Many people experience anxiety in various capacities, whether it’s financial stress, a trauma, or panic attacks.
The best known ways of dealing with anxiety and/or stress are with medications, yet there are other methods that can be tried before medication or for less severe anxiety.
One of these methods is practicing relaxation techniques. Focusing on your breathing, meditation, guided imagery, and muscle relaxation are all types of relaxation techniques that can be performed at any time. These exercises have physiological benefits that work to decrease the physical symptoms of anxiety, which distracts attention from the mental symptoms.
Another way of overcoming anxiety and stress is having a support network and/or someone to confide in about the various factors in your life that may be causing the anxiety.
Seeking counseling from a trained therapist can also help individuals examine and work to changes the thought patterns that lead to and reinforce anxiety. Therapy can help a person address tendencies to become severely anxious or overwhelmed by situations that should not produce these extreme feelings, and decide what changes they are willing to make in order to help their condition.
Maintaining a healthy diet, practicing a regular exercise routine, getting the proper amount of sleep and learning to balance daily responsibilities also helps to significantly reduce stress and anxiety.
If you are experiencing symptoms of severe anxiety that are impairing your daily life, you should seek evaluation from a behavioral health specialist. Our area is fortunate, as Cone Health has an exceptional network of behavioral healthcare providers dedicated to treating individuals in the community suffering from anxiety disorders and other behavioral health conditions.
Barbara “B” Akins is a registered nurse and staff educator at Cone Health Behavioral Health Hospital. Barbara received a Bachelor of Science in nursing from North Carolina A & T University in 1975. She is also certified in the Congregational Nurse Program, through The Duke Endowment and the Moses Cone-Wesley Long Community Health Foundation.