Anxiety is real, serious, and treatable. Discover all treatments, remedies and tricks to reduce anxiety. Learn how to relieve symptoms of anxiety.
How to Reduce Anxiety: 10 Best Tips
Patients should use their bed for sleep only. Move the television out of the bedroom. Develop a regular and relaxing routine for bedtime. Set a regular time to get up and get dressed each day. Drink caffeinated beverages (if at all) in the morning only.
Exercise is an excellent anxiolytic (something that decreases anxiety). It doesn’t need to be strenuous. Daily brisk walking for 30 minutes is enough. Do some exercise outside the house every day, if possible. The evidence is strongest for aerobic exercise (walking, swimming, running, biking) but strength building (weight-lifting and using exercise machines) also helps.
People with anxiety may isolate themselves and constantly think about their worries. It is important that they stay connected with family and friends, even if they do not feel like it. They should schedule meetings and activities that they used to enjoy. This is adopting the “fake it until you make it approach.”
Quit drugs. Limit alcohol
Many illicit drugs, like cocaine and methamphetamines, may elevate mood in the short-term, but can also make anxiety worse in the short-term and long-term. Alcohol may decrease anxiety in the short-term, but can worsen anxiety in the long-term. Alcohol makes falling asleep easier, but staying asleep harder. Alcohol use also increases risk of suicide. Support your patients to quit.
Limit tobacco and caffeine
Both tobacco and caffeine are stimulants which can worsen anxiety. Decreasing the amount of (or not using) caffeine and tobacco can make anxiety much better.
Practice mindfulness techniques or do CBT homework
Mindfulness techniques may include sitting or walking meditation, yoga, and the body scan. CBT homework may include writing down automatic thought and behavior patterns and thinking about underlying belief systems
How to Reduce Anxiety with Medication
Patients with anxiety may be prescribed:
• Anxiolytic medication (some of the same medicines commonly used to treat depression)
• Possibly another medicine to increase the effect of the anxiolytic.
Many patients also take dietary supplements, alternative medications (such as SAMe) or herbal medications. Ask about these so that you can see if there are toxic side effects or interactions with prescribed medicines.
Anxiety: The ABCs of Anxiety Disorders
“Anxiety disorders” is a broad term; it encompasses six psychiatric (a sin real
, or medical) disorders. Although the symptoms of each anxiety disorder vary in different people, they all provoke extreme fear or worry that interferes with a normal lifestyle.Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD):
Excessive uncontrollable worry about everyday issues, including school, work, money, friends, and health.Social Anxiety Disorder:
Avoidance of everyday social situations due to extreme anxiety about being judged by others or behaving in a way that might cause embarrassment or ridicule.Panic Disorder:
Severe attacks of terror, which may feel like you’re having a heart attack or going crazy, for no apparent reason.Specific Phobias:
Intense fear reaction that leads to avoiding an object, place, or situation such as riding in elevators or driving on bridges; those with specific phobias typically recognize that the fear is irrational and inappropriate for the circumstance.Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD):
Persistent, recurring thoughts(obsessions) that reflect exaggerated anxiety or fears and manifest as repetitive behaviors or rituals (compulsions); for example, the uncontrollable need to scrub hands repeatedly or the insistence on absolute neatness and order.Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD):
Avoidance, detachment, difficulty sleeping and concentrating, and reliving a traumatic event or experience several months or years after it has occurred.