ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.– Are you overwhelmed with all the negative news you’ve been watching lately? Who wouldn’t feel anxious as COVID-19 continues to be a looming threat? And have you ever thought about what your future holds amidst the crisis?
Mental illnesses have risen since the start of the pandemic in 2020. Statistics show that 31.9% of New Mexico (NM) adults reported symptoms of anxiety or depression in 2021. That’s higher than the national average of 31.6%.
Anxiety can be momentary for some because of a current situation. But it’s a lifetime chronic condition for others who have it even before the pandemic. There are interventions to ease your anxiety and boost your energy levels. Let’s learn more about anxiety first.
- Symptoms of anxiety
- Causes of anxiety
- Ways of easing anxiety
- Alternative therapies for anxiety
Symptoms of Anxiety
It’s normal to feel anxious. But, anxiety becomes a problem when it’s intense towards ordinary things or situations. Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) elicits this excessive and uncontrolled feeling. It affects your life, as well as the lives of 6.8 million other adults in the U.S.
GAD starts during the teenage years and persists throughout one’s life. The difference between usual anxiety and GAD is its severity. Some of the symptoms include the following:
- Worrying a lot about mundane things
- Inability to control anxious feelings
- Restlessness and irritability
- Difficulty remaining calm or trouble with relaxing
- Trouble falling or staying asleep
- Difficulty in concentrating and staying focused
These symptoms get worse during crises or difficult times. For instance, you have always had a hard time sleeping. Now you can’t sleep at all because you’re worried about being exposed to COVID at work.
It’s best to consult a medical practitioner to determine your type of anxiety disorder. It can be GAD, panic disorder, separation anxiety, or phobia. Also, it can also occur with other conditions like depression and drug or alcohol dependence.
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Causes of Anxiety
The exact causes of anxiety are yet to be discovered. Yet, current studies suggest probable causes. It includes personal, genetic, and environmental or social factors.
1. Personal Factor
Your brain structure and function may show an anxiety disorder. For example, it happens when there are disruptions in the transmission of brain signals. Or it occurs when there is an imbalance in the activity of the emotional centers of the brain.
If you’re a female, you are twice as likely to experience anxiety than men. A study further suggests that bisexuals may be prone to anxiety more than people that identify as lesbians or gays.
2. Genetic Factor
Researchers identified the gene expression linked to anxiety. The gene RBFOX1, including non-genetic factors, may contribute to anxiety disorders.
Also, the PDE4B gene is hereditary; thus, anxiety may run in the family. You may have it because a biological relative has a history of anxiety or mental illness.
3. Environmental Factor
Stress is a major contributing factor to anxiety. You experience stress throughout your lifetime. It can be resolved, but some stressors remain unsettled. These chronic stressors can increase your risk of developing anxiety.
According to the American Institute of Stress, life events pose a risk of anxiety and stress. For instance, if you went through a divorce or lost your significant other. Other cases involve financial difficulties or unemployment.
Your stress plus your past experiences can affect your present and future. A study shows environmental factors like childhood trauma and current stressors can also cause anxiety. A study coined it as The Unholy Trinity. It’s the triad of childhood trauma, adult anxiety, and long-term pain.
Do you feel anxiety and depression or have suicidal thoughts? See how you can achieve better mental health.
Ways of Easing Anxiety
A medical practitioner performs a physical examination to rule out medical conditions causing your symptoms. At the same time, the practitioner evaluates your family medical history. Additionally, they also do a thorough psychological exam and blood tests.
The medical practitioner recommends the appropriate intervention after confirming your anxiety disorder. There are therapies and various medications to ease your anxiety.
1. Lifestyle Modification
Before anything else, you have the power to help yourself. You can change some habits and routines in your everyday life. Some practical activities include:
- Avoiding alcohol and caffeine
- Eating a healthy diet
- Exercising regularly
- Getting enough at least 7-9 hours of sleep
- Minimizing exposure to stressors
- Breathing and meditating or practicing mindfulness or yoga
- Not smoking
If you feel you need more support, some organizations can help you with what you’re experiencing. Examples are the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, Mental Health America, and Support Groups Central.
Psychotherapy involves a “talk therapy” between you and a medical practitioner. It has different approaches which involve cognitive behavior, interpersonal, and psychodynamic therapy.
Researchers found that Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) is an effective intervention for mental and mood disorders. Also, a study shows CBT appears to be an effective therapy specifically for anxiety.
Another study reveals CBT leads to reduced worry. At the same time, it’s comparative to medication, and it was more effective six months after the study.
There are several types of medications for anxiety. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, the three prescribed meds include anti-anxiety, antidepressants, and beta-blockers.
- An example of anti-anxiety is benzodiazepines, known as the first-line anti-anxiety medication. Like any drug, it can have potential side effects, tolerance, and dependency issues. Thus, it’s usually prescribed for short-term use.
- Antidepressants or selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors can also be used to relieve anxiety. But, a medical practitioner may prescribe you different kinds to know what works best for you. The effect of antidepressants takes time. At the same time, an abrupt stop to taking antidepressants may cause withdrawal symptoms.
- Beta-blockers treat high blood pressure, irregular heartbeat, and congestive heart failure. In addition, a 2020 study reveals that beta-blocker atenolol works for several mental conditions. For example, it positively affected 81% of people with anxiety disorders.
There are various remedies for anxiety and low energy levels. They can come in many forms like oral, injection, and infusions. You can utilize IV therapy in Albuquerque. It’s best to consult us to know what suits you.
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Alternative Therapies for Anxiety
1. Herbal Medicines
Herbal medicines and supplements can complement psychotherapy and traditional drugs. Studies show they are promising remedies for anxiety.
A systematic review reveals passionflower, lavender, and saffron are comparable to anti-anxiety and antidepressant meds. About 45% of the 100 studies reported positive outcomes with minimal side effects than conventional meds.
Supplements, like herbal meds, can play a role in easing your anxiety. For example, a study shows multivitamins containing vitamins B and C, calcium, magnesium, and zinc decreased anxiety in young adults.
Likewise, another study finds supplements benefit people with mood and anxiety disorders. For example, B vitamins alleviate mood according to a systematic review of healthy people.
Vitamin B also boosts your energy levels, which makes a difference since anxiety can be debilitating. A study found that Vitamin B12 deficiency can lead to diminished energy and intolerance to exercise. It also includes fatigue and shortness of breath. For one, the Injection and Infusion clinic offers Vitamin B12 injections, an IV therapy in Albuquerque.
3. Ddihydro Honokiol-B (DHH-B)
There are other dietary supplements with anti-anxiety effects. For one, DHH-B is a natural non-peptide supplement. It promotes calm and relaxation as a potent anxiolytic.
It has other positive attributes, unlike conventional drugs with potential side effects. Researchers found it didn’t cause the slowing down of the central nervous system functions. Neither did it result in amnesia, motor dysfunction, nor physical dependence.
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Chronic anxiety negatively impacts all aspects of your life. Don’t let anxiety cripple you. You can benefit from a lifestyle change, psychotherapy, medication, and alternative therapies.
These interventions relieve you of your symptoms, so you can continue to function normally. Two of the many supplements include DHH-B and B vitamins. These supplements lead to remarkable results based on scientific studies.
Chronic anxiety won’t vanish on its own, so it’s best not to ignore it if you’re experiencing any signs or symptoms. It’s best to seek help today to achieve peace of mind. You can check our website for the list of services, including IV therapy in Albuquerque.