Anxiety disorder has become a common problem among people in the modern world. However, realizing that you aren’t the only one experiencing anxiety is essential.
You may have been able to link specific situations or thoughts with your anxiety attacks. Did you know, however, that your body’s chemicals also play a part?
Understanding anxiety better will help you gain control of future stress. In addition, understanding how your body reacts to pressure is helpful.
What is anxiety?
It is normal to feel some anxiety. Life is generally filled with anxiety-provoking situations, such as taking exams or speaking in public.
Anxiety disorders can develop if anxiety is excessive. You are no longer in charge, which can affect your everyday life.
Common anxiety disorders include
- Generalized Anxiety Disorder
- Panic disorder
- Obsessive-compulsive disorder
- Social Anxiety
- Separation anxiety
An anxiety disorder is diagnosed when anxiety affects multiple aspects of a person’s life. This includes their relationships or their social interactions. In addition, a person can be analyzed with an anxiety disorder if their anxiety is caused by a situation or threat which is unlikely to harm them.
Anxiety is mild, moderate, or severe. Stress can have different causes and other ways to cope with it. Treatments will also vary from person to person.
Common symptoms of anxiety
These are common symptoms that indicate anxiety.
- Stress or excessive worry
- Feeling irritable, restless, or on edge
- Feeling emotional
- Tiredness, fatigue
- Inability to concentrate
- Trouble falling or staying asleep
- Avoiding certain situations
Other symptoms which may not be common include:
- Increased Heart Rate
- Muscle tension
- Digestive issues
- Faster breathing
- Weight gain or loss
Many people can link their anxiety with a stressful situation, phobia, or event. For example, someone might feel anxious about a work-related issue, a health concern, or an upcoming social event.
Anxiety disorder is not always a reaction to the current moment. Instead, some people experience anxiety because of something they participated in in the past or fear that it will happen shortly.
External factors of anxiety are those that are external to your body. They can affect your thinking and make you feel anxious.
Chemicals in your body can also be a factor. Epinephrine is one chemical that plays a role.
Chemicals in your body respond when an external circumstance or worrying thoughts cause anxiety. As a result, you may feel symptoms such as those listed above.
Epinephrine, a chemical in your body that responds to anxiety, is only one of many chemicals. Other chemicals could also be affected. For example, Serotonin imbalance can contribute to stress and high cortisol levels.
The primary chemical in anxiety is epinephrine. As soon as you feel anxious, epinephrine levels in your body increase.
When you feel anxious, epinephrine can have several effects on your body.
- Heart rate increases
- Blood pressure increases
- Faster breathing
- Blood flow increases to muscles
- Reduced blood flow in your digestive system
- The fight or flight response is initiated
Compare your anxiety symptoms to the effects of epinephrine. Some of your symptoms will be related to epinephrine.
Epinephrine levels increase when an external trigger causes anxiety. This increase will cause you to experience some effects that can contribute to your stress.
Epinephrine, stress and
Stress can cause more epinephrine to be released. It is important to remember that anxiety and stress are very similar. What starts as stress may also lead to anxiety.
Stress is when you feel under pressure, whether it’s to meet an expectation or to cope with a specific issue. Once the source of stress is removed, it will usually disappear.
Anxiety occurs when worrying thoughts persist even after the stressor is removed.
What starts as stress can become anxiety. For example, you may have experienced a stressful situation or event at first but continued to worry after it ended.
It can be challenging to differentiate between anxiety and stress. However, both can cause similar symptoms and increase the amount of epinephrine in your body.
How to deal with epinephrine
Can you counteract or overcome epinephrine’s effects if you are anxious? You can do some things to control your body’s reaction to anxiety. Here are a few of them.
Exercise can help you release excess epinephrine that circulates in your body.
Experts2 state that the exact relationship between exercise, anxiety, and stress is still unclear. Physical activity may help to reduce anxiety and stress.
Exercise can also help to relieve anxiety-induced muscle tension and blood pressure.
Aerobic exercises are the best. You can do sports, swimming, walking, running or cycling.
Yoga is another option if aerobic exercise does not suit you. It is a combination of relaxation exercises and meditation.
It is excellent because you can practice it at home if you don’t want to go out or join a group.
Yoga also reduces muscle tension and clears your mind from worrying thoughts. You can stop your body’s response to your thoughts if you can control them.
Meditation and mindfulness
Finding ways to manage your worrying thoughts can help you to stop your body’s reaction to them.
The main message of mindfulness and meditation is to use them to achieve a calm state through detached observation. This means you need to step back to feel grounded in the moment.
You can practice mindfulness and meditation anywhere. Many online resources provide guidance. While some groups offer classes on these practices, others offer them as part of their regular schedule.
The Guide to Meditation for Anxiety
Take some time off
It would help if you took care of yourself when you feel anxious. For example, you might find that taking a 3-minute break from the thing causing you anxiety helps.
You can make the most of your breaks if you prioritize them. Spending time outdoors, reading, or engaging in a hobby can be a great way to relax.
You may find that other methods are better for you. Your breaks should be filled with fun and relaxation.
Caffeine stimulates the release of epinephrine. So experts recommend limiting caffeine intake if you can’t live without it.
You can limit your caffeine consumption by drinking beverages with less caffeine. You could, for example, switch from coffee to tea.
When to consult a physician for anxiety
If you feel you have lost control of your anxiety, it is time to consult a physician. If you don’t seek help sooner, stress can cause severe problems.
As anxiety increases, it can affect your sleep, concentration, relationships, or work. You may also avoid certain situations due to it.
If you see anything similar or have other concerns about your anxiety, do not hesitate to consult a doctor. It is essential to address all problems, no matter how minor.
Your doctor may prescribe an anti anxiety medicine or refer you to one.