Image Source: Very Well Mind
What is Anxiety?
According to Very Well Mind “Anxiety is described by the diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders as anticipation of a future threat”. Whilst some can be nervous from school, work, or life events it is not an anxiety disorder merely just stress at some point in everyone’s lives. Anxiety goes deeper than just general stress. When it starts to impact your life, it is a problem and could be considered an anxiety disorder. There are diverse types of anxiety such as generalised anxiety, social anxiety, and more. According to the source, this type of anxiety should not be mixed up with general stress or daily worrying as anxiety is a genuine mental health issue. However, general day-to-day stress can become an anxiety disorder. Anxiety disorders are diagnosed through behaviour and physical change that will your anxiety worse, this will then impact on your body and mind as will later be mentioned.
Several anxiety disorder symptoms are depending on the individual’s personality, and behaviour and some may be triggered by different things. Common symptoms include excessive fear and worry, dry mouth, muscle tension, nausea, irregular heartbeat, difficulty sleeping, cautious and avoidant behaviour, and panic attacks. Some symptoms of a generalised anxiety disorder include restlessness, irritability, fatigue and concentration difficulties, muscle tension, and difficulty sleeping. It is said that adults need to have at least three of the symptoms adding anxiety and worry to be diagnosed with generalised anxiety disorder. Children only need one of the above symptoms adding anxiety and worry to be diagnosed with the same disorder. There are many physical symptoms of anxiety that includes stomach pain, rapid breathing, sweating, increased heart rate, or muscle pain that could be damaging to your health and could develop into another illness. According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, you might have an increased risk for physical health problems if you have anxiety. The research was done 2015 where 989 adults with anxiety symptoms were associated with ulcers. Also, with depression and anxiety symptoms, it is more likely that you can develop asthma, heart problems, migraines, vision problems and, back problems.
The Benefits of Anxiety?
According to Very Well Mind, good stress is referred to as “eustress”. This is what keeps us going and ambitious in life. This shows that to a certain degree stress is good and healthy to have in your life. It is natural and normal to be stressed as life can be very stressful at times, regarding school, work, or any other important event to you. It is estimated that anxiety can act as a warning sign to manage your life better, and that constant worry is a sign that something is not right in your life. It can be difficult to handle, however, it can help you to discover yourself more and appreciate yourself as you are. Research has shown that “students and athletes who experienced some anxiety actually displayed improved performance on tests or while participating in competitive sports”. Anxiety in a way helps you understand your weakness and strengths in life and better yourself in the future, so you do not repeat your mistakes. The fight-or-flight response is a common response to anxiety or stress that “allows us to react faster to emergencies”. According to a source, it was found that “in the UK adolescents who suffered from anxiety had fewer accidents and accidental deaths in early adulthood than those who did not have anxiety”. This almost shows that it has at times helped someone’s life or kept you safe. It is also known to be a good friendship trait as those who have experienced anxiety may be more sympathetic and sensitive towards your anxiety and mental health issues as they have experienced it themselves.
There are several treatments for anxiety, it depends on what symptoms you experience and how badly it impacts your life. According to Very Well Mind therapy and medication are the two main treatments for anxiety. Cognitive-behavioural therapy is an effective type of therapy if you experience anxiety. Self-care is also an important factor in improving your anxiety. Being physically active and going outside in nature may calm you down and look at things from a different perspective and positively affect your mood. Avoiding any alcohol, caffeine cigarettes, or other substances may make your anxiety worse. Another tip is to try meditation or yoga where you focus on your breathing and your inner self, where you discover relaxation and peace within yourself. A good sleeping schedule will make a big difference it will give you a certain routine that you need to keep motivation and ambition in your life. Stop being on your phone too much and pay more attention to your surroundings, meet new people, and read a new book that will expand your knowledge of life.
Whether you or your friends and family experience anxiety, it is a sensitive matter to discuss. You feel very vulnerable and exposed when stating your reasons for your anxiety, however, everyone is becoming more open about their mental health nowadays. Social media has spread awareness of mental health and has reduced the stigma around it. Social media pages with motivational quotes and messages can help to increase your happiness and joy in life with anxiety. It is a topic that is not taken lightly, which is why sharing your experience can help so many others that experience the same mental health problem.
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