Anxiety is an emotion that can give rise to worrying thoughts, making you feel tense.
It is a part of life that occurs when you face stressful situations and can also cause physical health changes – such as blood pressure fluctuations.
Getting occasionally anxious is normal. It can motivate you to tackle situations that are unfavourable or threatening.
However, it is a matter of concern if the episodes of anxiety become recurrent.
Here are a few triggers that can cause chronic anxiety:
- Panic disorder
- Stress at work or school
- Financial stress
- A personal relationship that causes stress – such as marital discord
- Stress due to the loss of a loved one or a pandemic
- Medical side effects
- Unhealthy lifestyle choices such as taking drugs, smoking, & drinking alcohol
Everyone gets anxious from time to time. But if the condition aggravates, it can have a severe impact on your:
- Central nervous system
- Cardiovascular health
- Digestive & immune system
- Respiratory system
Given below are some signs and symptoms that you should be aware of to take timely preventive measures for controlling anxiety:
- Trouble sleeping
- Rapid breathing
- Increased heart rate
- Weakness & tiredness
- Feeling nervous, tense & restless
- Sweating & trembling
- Worrying & trouble concentrating
- Gastrointestinal (GI) problems
Now that you are familiar with some crucial anxiety triggers and symptoms, continue reading to learn about the top five lifestyle changes that can help control anxiety and improve overall health.
Stay physically active
Along with improving your physical health, exercising regularly also aids in maintaining mental health.
According to research, a regular workout regimen enhances serotonin secretion and helps in minimizing anxiety symptoms by improving concentration and willpower.
If sparing an hour or two for working out does not suit your routine, aim for at least 15 to 30 minutes of regular physical activity.
It can include yoga, brisk walking, jogging, cycling, or any other physical activity that you are comfortable doing.
Stay clear of alcohol and smoking
Several studies suggest a direct connection between consuming alcohol, smoking and the onset of chronic anxiety symptoms.
Alcohol contains sedatives, and it may help minimize the feeling of fear.
However, research indicates that alcohol and anxiety are directly connected, as alcohol use disorder (AUD) can trigger anxiety disorders.
Some people smoke because they think this habit can help them deal with stressful situations. But studies show that smoking worsens the condition and increases tension.
Get sufficient sleep
Sleep plays a crucial role in boosting mental health and controlling anxiety symptoms.
Experts recommend that a person should aim for at least seven to eight hours of sound sleep every night.
Here are a few tips that can help improve the sleep cycle:
- Avoiding caffeine at least six hours before bedtime
- Stay away from the mobile phone, tablet, or laptop around the time of sleep
- Do not watch television or read a book in bed
- Writing down your worries
- Sleeping at the same time every day
Eat a healthy diet
There is an old saying – you become what you eat. Unhealthy dietary choices can wreak havoc on overall health, causing mood changes that trigger anxiety.
Drinking approximately two to three litres of water every day, avoiding processed foods, and eating healthy meals can help control the symptoms of chronic anxiety.
The following are a few food options you can include in your diet:
- Pumpkin seeds
- Chamomile & green tea
- Fruits & nuts
- Green leafy vegetables
Time management is one of the best ways to help you stay motivated throughout the day and control anxiety symptoms.
Given below are some tips to help plan your day and efficiently accomplish necessary tasks:
- Start the day with a clear focus
- Write down your to-do targets for the day (urgent ones first)
- Minimize interruptions
- Break big targets into smaller tasks
- Limit multitasking
- Avoid procrastination
- Review the day
Avoiding the onset of anxiety may be unavoidable, but taking measures to control its aggravation is in your control.
That said, the above-mentioned are the five best lifestyle changes that can help manage chronic anxiety and improve your overall well-being.
Furthermore, you should also frequently opt for stress screenings. These health checks provide you with a comprehensive insight into your health, allowing you to take necessary precautions to stay at the top of your health.
Disclaimer: This blog is purely informational. We strongly recommend you consult your doctor before you begin managing any condition based on the information given above.