If you have ever experienced anxiety, then you know that it can be a very unpleasant feeling. It is a response to stressors in your life and triggers fear or nervousness about those stressors. Anxiety has its place in the human experience, but when it becomes problematic, it is known as an anxiety disorder.
According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA), almost one in five adults experiences some form of anxiety. Fortunately, there are many natural remedies that can help reduce anxiety and manage it effectively if you are one of these people.
Know the warning signs of anxiety
If you are concerned that you may have an anxiety disorder, it is a good idea to understand the signs and symptoms of anxiety so that you can seek treatment if needed. If you have persistent anxiety, it is important to understand the signs and symptoms so that you can seek treatment.
- Restlessness or feeling keyed up or on edge
- Difficulty focusing or paying attention – Irritability
- Being easily irritated
- Worrying excessively about health, money, job security, or relationships
- Having trouble getting organized
- Having trouble concentrating
- Having feelings of being overwhelmed Having trouble sleeping or sleeping too much
- Having an increased startle response
- Experiencing muscle tension
- Experiencing muscle tension
- Feeling muscle stiffness
- Experiencing difficulty swallowing
- Having a lump in the throat
- Feeling lightheaded
- Shortness of breath
- Feeling like your heart is racing or that it is pounding in your chest
- Having chest pain or palpitations
- Having feelings of hyperventilating
- Having thoughts of death or of losing control
Breathing exercises can be very useful in reducing anxiety. When you are feeling anxious, your breathing can become rapid and shallow. This can make you feel even more anxious. Deep breathing exercises can help you calm down by slowing your breathing and getting it back to a normal rate.
Try to breathe from your diaphragm, not your upper chest, by letting your stomach expand as you inhale and contract as you exhale. This will help you calm down much more quickly.
When you are feeling anxious, try taking a few minutes to visualize yourself at your calmest. This can be at the beach, in a garden, in a field, or wherever else you find peace.
Progressive muscle relaxation
This exercise involves tensing and releasing various groups of muscles throughout your body to help reduce tension and stress.
Meditation is a great way to help reduce anxiety by lowering your heart rate and helping you focus on the present moment.
Regular exercise can help reduce the symptoms of anxiety by lowering cortisol levels and relieving stress. There is a wide range of exercises that can be useful for reducing anxiety, such as swimming, running, going to the gym, and participating in yoga.
Just about any type of exercise can be helpful for managing anxiety, as long as it is at a moderate intensity and you are not overdoing it. Exercising regularly can also reduce anxiety by improving self-esteem, improving problem-solving skills, boosting serotonin levels (the feel-good neurotransmitter), and providing a distraction from feelings of anxiety.
Mindfulness is a form of meditation that can be very helpful for managing anxiety. It can be practiced anywhere and is designed to focus on the present moment.
Try taking five minutes out of your day to sit quietly and focus on your breath and the world around you, or try meditating to help reduce anxiety.
Develop a self-care routine
Anxiety can make you feel like you do not have control over your life or like your life is out of control. Taking time out of each day to practice self-care can help you regain some control and reduce your anxiety.
Try setting aside time daily to practice self-care such as journaling, taking a bath, coloring, getting a massage, or going for a walk.
Eat an anti-anxiety diet
Certain foods can help reduce anxiety and others can make it worse. If you are experiencing anxiety, it is a good idea to avoid foods that can make it worse and try to eat foods that can help.
Foods to avoid include; caffeine, sugar, and refined grains.
These can make anxiety worse. – Eating plenty of protein can help reduce anxiety, as can eating foods rich in magnesium and calcium.
Fruits and vegetables are good for you and can help reduce anxiety. – Try using herbs and spices to add flavor and brightness to your food, many of which can help reduce anxiety.
Use aromatherapy/essential oils
Certain essential oils have been shown to have anti-anxiety properties, so they can be used as part of an aromatherapy treatment to help reduce anxiety. You can use aromatherapy by putting a few drops of an essential oil in a diffuser, adding it to a bath, or applying it to your skin.
Lavender – Lavender has been shown to reduce anxiety and improve sleep.
Lemon – Lemon has been shown to reduce anxiety and improve mood.
Cedarwood – Cedarwood has been shown to reduce anxiety and improve focus.
Chamomile – Chamomile has been shown to reduce anxiety and improve sleep.
Orange – Orange has been shown to reduce anxiety and improve mood.
Frankincense – Frankincense has been shown to reduce anxiety and improve focus.
Talk to a therapist
If you have tried some of the natural remedies listed above and are still struggling with an anxiety disorder, it may be a good idea to talk to a therapist. A therapist can help you better understand the root causes of your anxiety and come up with a treatment plan that works for you.
Anxiety is a very common mental health issue, and it can be managed with natural remedies. If you feel like you are experiencing anxiety, try making some lifestyle changes to see if they can help.
Remember that everyone experiences anxiety from time to time, and it does not always mean that you have an anxiety disorder. If your anxiety is bad enough that it is impacting your life, then consider talking to a therapist or doctor.