Everyone gets nervous or anxious from time to time—when speaking in public, for instance, or while heading for an interview, a tough exam, or when going through professional or personal difficulty. But for some people, however, anxiety becomes so frequent, or so forceful, that it begins to take over their lives. But how one can know whether his/her anxiety is a part of life or a serious mental health condition? How can one tell if his/her everyday anxiety has crossed the line into a disorder? It’s definitely not that easy. Although common physical conditions might be easy to diagnose. Here’s a start – if you experience any of the following symptoms on a regular basis, you may research, rethink about the situation, try out self-help ways and can seek counseling or professional advice.
Signs of Anxiety Disorders
Inability to relax and constantly carrying around stress could be a sign of anxiety disorder. If stress-reducing techniques or relaxation isn’t working for you then certainly a stronger treatment might be required to treat a possible anxiety disorder.
Jumping out of your chair at a horror movie showing happens to plenty of people, and is not necessarily a sign of anxiety disorders. But an exaggerated startle response may be initial signs of anxiety. Frequently feeling on edge and startled by even the slightest, unexpected event could mean you have an exaggerated startle response.
Trouble Falling or Staying Asleep
Sleeping problems and anxiety often go hand in hand. And, of course, it’s not unusual to toss and turn with anticipation on the night before a big speech or job interview. But if you chronically find yourself lying awake, worried or agitated—about specific problems (like money), or nothing in particular—it might be a sign of an anxiety disorder.
Near-constant muscle tension whether it consists of clenching your jaw, balling your fists, or flexing muscles throughout your body—often accompanies anxiety disorders. This symptom can be so persistent and pervasive that people who have lived with it for a long time may stop noticing it after a while.
Picture a sudden, gripping feeling of fear and helplessness that can last for several minutes, accompanied by scary physical symptoms such as breathing problems, a pounding or racing heart, numb hands, sweating, weakness or dizziness, chest pain, stomach pain, and feeling hot or cold, all that counts for Panic Attacks. Although not everyone who has a panic attack has an anxiety disorder, but people who experience them repeatedly may be diagnosed with it.
Anxiety Self-Help Tips
Connect with friends and likeminded people
Loneliness can always set the stage for anxiety. Decrease your vulnerability by connecting face-to-face with people who are supportive and caring. Make it a point to regularly meet up with friends or share your worries and concerns with a trusted loved one over a cup of coffee.
Practice relaxation Techniques
When practiced regularly, relaxation techniques such as meditation, progressive muscle relaxation, and deep breathing can reduce anxiety symptoms and increase feelings of relaxation and emotional well-being.
This is a natural stress buster and anxiety reliever. To achieve the maximum benefit, aim for at least 30 minutes of exercise daily. It can be in the form of walking, running, swimming, or aerobics.
Get enough sleep
Lack of sleep can aggravate anxious thoughts and feelings, so try to get seven to eight hours of quality sleep at night. If you struggle with sleep, follow simple things such as taking a light dinner, reading a book at bed, listening to soothing music etc. to calm your body and mind.
Check your intake
If you struggle with anxiety, you may want to consider reducing your caffeine intake, or cutting it out completely. Same with alcohol, which can make the situation worse. And while it may seem like cigarettes are calming, nicotine is actually a powerful stimulant that leads to higher the levels of anxiety.
Seek counseling for further help – While self-help coping strategies for anxiety can be very effective, if your worries, fears, or anxiety attacks have become so great that they’re causing extreme distress or disrupting your daily routine, it is important to seek professional help. If you are very anxious in life, then Café Counsel’s online counseling will help you overcome the fear. The counseling approach and sessions (through call, chat or video) will all depend on the type of anxiety disorder and its severity. To know more about Cafe Counsel online counseling, click here.