Although anxiety affects us all at various times, for some people these feelings are constant and can affect every single aspect of their life.  You may experience anxiety as a result of another condition, such as panic disorder, phobias, PTSD (insert link) and social anxiety disorders. 

A long-term anxiety issue will cause you to feel anxious about a range of situations and issues, rather than about one specific thing. If you suffer with anxiety, you are likely to feel anxious most days and cannot remember the last time they felt relaxed.  One anxious thought may replace another and this can be very draining on someone.  Common feelings and emotions include feeling restless or worried, having trouble concentrating or sleeping and physical side effects such as dizziness or heart palpitations. 

Whilst it’s normal to feel anxious about everyday things, you may find that there are some key triggers that raise anxiety levels, such as work pressure, exam pressures or relationship difficulties. Extreme anxiety needs to be resolved because of the impact it has on our bodies – it heightens our natural survival responses and we may spend prolonged time in ‘flight or fight’ mode.

When we feel anxious, we may experience: 

Psychologically, anxiety can have an impact on sleeping, concentration and self-confidence.  People with anxiety may also feel more irritable and depressed.

What are the causes of anxiety?

People may feel anxious about a variety of things and may respond in different ways.  Genetic make-up, your upbringing and the way you learn to cope can all impact how and when you feel anxious.  Understanding your anxiety is a really big step forward to helping you to manage and reduce it.


How can anxiety be treated?


If you feel anxious on a regular, ongoing basis, then you may want to try some of these techniques to help you manage and reduce your anxious feelings:

  • Talking about your anxiety with friends and family
  • Facing your fears by exposing yourself to situations that typically make you feel anxious.  This will help you to manage and reduce your anxiety when the situation isn’t as bad as you fear
  • Understand what and when you feel anxious, so that you can prepare yourself for any anxiety-provoking events
  • Learn to relax and practice yoga, meditation and mindfulness. Breathing deeply and slowly will help you immediately if you experience any anxious feelings
  • Improve your overall health by increasing your exercise levels and eating well.  Excess sugar can lead to a dip in blood sugar levels which can increase the feelings of anxiety, so try to reduce this.  The chemicals released when you exercise  can improve your mood, wellbeing and stress levels
  • Avoid alcohol or drink in moderation – excess drinking can make you feel worse and impair your brain’s ability to deal with anxiety naturally
  • Talking therapies, such as counselling or Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT – insert link) can help you to understand the link between negative mood and thoughts, giving you control over your feelings and reducing anxiety.
  • Practicing mindfulness which can help to break the unhelpful thoughts people have and reduce negative thinking.
  • Medication may also be used to help people with anxiety.

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