Los Angeles Christian Counseling
Anxiety and panic attacks are scary. Chronic anxiety can cause physical ailments such as high blood pressure, heart disease, Type II diabetes, digestive conditions like Irritable Bowel Syndrome, and even change the characteristics of arrhythmias that can lead to death.
However, there are ways to overcome anxiety and panic attacks with simple practices and lifestyle tweaks.
Ways to overcome anxiety and panic attacks.
Our lifestyles and habits contribute to and exacerbate anxiety symptoms. Changing habits and introducing healthier options can reduce anxiety symptoms and decrease the likelihood of panic attacks. The following is a list of changes you can make alongside counseling to take control of your anxiety.
Cut back on alcohol, caffeine, and sugar.
Substances affect blood pressure, heart rate, and endocrine responses. This can aggravate anxiety. For example, if you suffer from chronic anxiety and panic attacks, consuming espresso or energy drinks can increase your heart rate, make you jittery, and perhaps trigger a panic attack.
Alcohol, caffeine, sugar, and drugs (illicit or prescription) can make your anxiety worse. If stopping caffeine, alcohol, and sugar cold turkey worries you due to potential headaches and other temporary side effects, cut back on these substances slowly.
For example, if you drink four cups of strong coffee daily, consider cutting back to two cups daily or switching your afternoon and evening coffees to decaf. Eventually, you may want to stop drinking alcohol and caffeine and consuming sugar completely.
If you are addicted to drugs, seek help immediately. With counseling, you can beat the addiction.
Exercise helps to regulate emotions and calm nervousness. A good workout session in the morning will leave you feeling relaxed, more peaceful, and more confident. Consistent exercise lowers blood pressure, decreases heart rate, strengthens bones and muscles, and increases flexibility. Working out also boosts the immune system, helping you fight viruses more easily.
If you haven’t exercised in a while, start slowly after gaining clearance from your doctor. The best fitness regimen incorporates some form of cardio, resistance training, and flexibility training.
You can get ideas from a personal trainer or try a split training schedule. For example, if you are just starting exercise or getting back to it, consider lifting weights on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, stretching sessions on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and daily walks for 20-60 minutes.
Sometimes, the best way to lower your anxiety is to walk away, whether moving into another room away from a toxic person or taking a walk around the neighborhood to blow off steam.
It may be time to sever ties if you are dealing with a toxic relationship or friendship. You can still love and care for that person without jeopardizing your mental, physical, and emotional health. You may need to step back from the relationship to see it objectively.
If your anxiety grows throughout the day, consider adding an evening walk after work or dinner. Walking and other cardio pursuits can help take your mind off problems or allow you the time to formulate a solution.
Make sleep a priority.When up against a deadline or worried about the future, we tend to forgo sleep to put in as much time to figure out the problem or work overtime. This hustle mentality may serve you well in the short term, but it can be detrimental to your health in the long term.
Instead of staying up until midnight and dragging yourself out of bed at 4 AM, create a nightly routine. Spend fifteen minutes laying out your outfit for the next day, setting out things you will need, and packing breakfasts, lunch, and snacks.
Take a hot bath or shower and ease into bed with a book or your favorite music. However, avoid screens before bed as the blue light interferes with sleep. Once you create this nightly habit, you will wake up refreshed, energized, and ready to tackle your day.
Christian counseling can help.
Counseling can help those who struggle with anxiety and panic attacks. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), talk therapy, art and music therapy, and behavioral therapy are only a few effective methods to treat chronic anxiety.
Contact our office today at Los Angeles Christian Counseling to schedule an assessment with a counselor in Los Angeles. We look forward to working with you to better your mental health and break free from anxiety and panic attacks.
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DISCLAIMER: THIS ARTICLE DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE
The information, including but not limited to, text, graphics, images and other material contained on this article are for informational purposes only. No material on this site is intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please contact one of our counselors for further information.