February 7, 2019

How to Manage Anxiety

Stress Relief

According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA), 18% of the population is affected by an anxiety disorder. Anxiety is a real, sometimes debilitating set of disorders that can present themselves in numerous ways. From the ADAA website, symptoms of anxiety can include:

  • Feeling nervous, irritable or on edge
  • Having a sense of impending danger, panic or doom
  • Having an increased heart rate
  • Breathing rapidly (hyperventilation), sweating, and/or trembling
  • Feeling weak or tired
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Having trouble sleeping
  • Experiencing gastrointestinal (GI) problems

Of course, anxiety doesn’t always show in typical ways. Some people experiencing anxiety may show it by trying to control a situation, suddenly bursting into anger, or by withdrawing completely. People with social anxiety may avoid public settings, while people with panic disorder experience sudden panic attacks. Many people with anxiety have not been formerly diagnosed and may not even realise that anxiety is the cause of their discomfort.

If you experience any of these symptoms, the first step is to consult with your medical professional. If you are at risk of harming yourself or others, call 9-1-1.

Strategies for Anxiety Management

Work with your doctor to come up with a treatment plan that is right for you. Aside from medication (that can be an integral part of managing anxiety), there are many strategies that may be useful in helping you find relief.

Therapy

Talking through your anxiety with a professional can be extremely helpful. Counsellors are well-versed in the complexities of anxiety, and can help you develop a comprehensive strategy for managing symptoms.

Grounding Exercises

A common technique for helping with in-the-moment anxiety is using a grounding exercise. Grounding exercises focus on the physical properties of your environment, helping you to refocus your brain. You might sit in a chair and consciously focus on how your feet feel on the floor and how your back feels against the chair. You might look around you for three things you can see, three things you can smell, three things you can touch, and three things you can hear. By paying attention to the tangible senses, you can help you brain move away from the anxious feelings it was focused on.

Having a Snack

Anxiety can be made worse if you’re hungry or thirsty. Further, the act of chewing starts the digestive process, which can help your body feel calmer. Scheduling regular snacks and choosing a small healthy treat when symptoms appear can be helpful.

Meditation

Meditation’s core purpose is to relax and calm both the body and mind, and can therefore be extremely beneficial for those with anxiety. Meditation uses grounding exercises along with breath work, body scans, and more to help place your brain in a trance-like state. Science has shown that meditation can be helpful for neuroplasticity, too—creating new neural pathways in your brain.

Binaural Beats

Theta waves are associated with deep relaxation and meditation, while Alpha waves help relieve stress and help you focus. Since a calm mind has a harder time being anxious, and since binaural beats help influence your brain into the desired wave frequency, it makes sense that binaural beats can be very beneficial to anxiety management. By choosing a Theta (4-8 Hz) or Alpha (8-14 Hz) wave frequency on our Zenfully app, you can kick start the calming process with the tap of a few buttons. Combine your binaural beats with one or more of the above techniques to maximize your relief.

As mentioned, anxiety is real and can be very serious. Always consult with medical professionals if anxiety is a problem for you. If you think binaural beats could be a good addition to your anxiety fighting arsenal, give Zenfully a try.

Use of Zenfully is not intended as a substitute for professional medical device, nor does Zenfully diagnose or treat any medical condition. Always consult a doctor before starting any new program.