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Combat Anxiety

AnxietyHow to Combat Your Anxiety, One Step at a Time

Earlier this year, I suffered my first major panic attack. For days afterward, my heart would race and my mind would fill with doomsday visions as I worried about everything around me, including whether I’d have more panic attacks and if I’d ever be able to stop them.

Knowing that it wasn’t just me, however, was strangely reassuring.

“Anxiety disorders are the most common condition in psychiatry,” said Dr. Naomi Simon, professor of psychiatry at N.Y.U. School of Medicine and director of the Anxiety and Complicated Grief Program at N.Y.U. Langone Health. Some 40 million people aged 18 or older in the United States, or 18 percent of the population, will suffer from an anxiety disorder each year, according to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America. In the course of a lifetime, that rate goes up to 28.8 percent of the American public.

Dr. David Rosmarin, the founder and director of the Center for Anxiety and an assistant professor in the department of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, added, “We’ve seen a massive increase in services in New York City in the last six months.”

“From North Korea to hurricanes, we live with a greater degree of uncertainty,” he said. “What it boils down to is: How much can people tolerate it when they don’t know what’s going to happen next?”

To make matters more anxiety-provoking, there’s an overwhelming number of methods you might turn to to help you manage life in these uncertain times. I talked to some experts to get a bit of guidance. (Of course, everyone’s situation is different; if you’re concerned about dealing with anxiety, don’t hesitate to contact your doctor.)

Being anxious vs. having a disorder

There’s an important distinction between anxiety and an anxiety disorder, Dr. Simon said.

“Anxiety is a natural reaction to stress — it’s not necessarily pathological or dangerous,” she said. “There’s the point where it becomes a condition, and the way we separate those has to do with the level of persistence, severity, distress, and if it’s impacting day-to-day function.” Read More


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Intolerable Stress

Stress7 Signs Your Body is Undergoing Intolerable Stress

Nowadays stress is unavoidable. All a person needs to do is watch the news, check his emails or even start with his daily chores. And at one point or another, he’ll encounter different types of stressors. These can affect one emotionally, mentally, and physically as well. And when the stress becomes intolerable, a person may notice some bothersome or even scary physical signs and symptoms.

Anyone who has ever experienced getting a headache at work knows exactly how too much stress feels like. When a person deals with too many things at one time, his body gets flooded with stress hormones. When this happens, it causes a chain reaction which leads to other physical symptoms. This is the body’s way of releasing the stress as it’s already unable to ignore it. When a person is experiencing too much stress, the body is unable to manage it any longer. And so, one will notice some physical manifestations.

Although even short-term stress may cause symptoms, the long-term effects of stress are far more harmful. If a person doesn’t get things under control, the symptoms may lead to breathing or heart problems and may aggravate existing health issues. Therefore it’s important to know the signs so one can start managing his world better to reduce stress.

What causes intolerable stress?
In the world today, a lot of things can cause a person to feel stressed. He may have to take an exam, go on an interview for a job or even run a race. These examples of short-term stress are all normal in one’s daily life. But it’s different when a person experiences long-term or chronic stress. This type of stress is caused by very stressful events or situations which last for a long time. Some examples are family conflicts or problems in the workplace. As time goes by, the stress may lead to severe physical symptoms. Here are some factors which may cause intolerable stress:

  • One may be experiencing personal problems and is unable to talk to anyone about it.
  • One may be experiencing problems with his health, which is causing him a lot of stress.
  • One may be experiencing emotional problems such as guilt, depression, low self-esteem, grief or even anger.
  • One may be experiencing problems with his relationships. He may be having frequent conflicts, or he may feel like there’s a lack of support.
  • One may be experiencing big changes in his life. These include the death of a loved one, losing his job, moving to a new town, and others.
  • One may be experiencing issues with his family. He may be supporting a family member who is also dealing with a lot of stress or one who has serious health problems.
  • One may be experiencing a conflict with his values and beliefs.
  • One may be experiencing poor and stressful living conditions or environments.
  • One may be experiencing problems with his social situation. He may always feel lonely, he may be discriminated against, or he may even be dealing with a lot of debt.
  • One may be experiencing problems with his job. He may feel unhappy about what he does, or he may feel like his job is too demanding. On the other hand, a person may also feel pressured because he is unemployed. He may have lost his job, or he may find it very difficult to find one.
  • One may also feel post-traumatic stress disorder. This may happen after a person experiences a traumatic or life-threatening event in his life.

These are some of the most common causes of intolerable stress. There are a lot more. Stress levels vary from one person to another. In fact, what is stressful to one person may not affect another person as much. It all depends on how a person perceives and deals with the situations he is faced with.
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Overcoming anxiety

AnxietyOvercoming Anxiety

The condition tends to strike many older adults, but there are ways to counter its paralyzing effects.

More and more, do you find yourself fighting feelings of worry? Do you feel increasingly anxious and tense? Do you obsess about things that may or may not happen? If so, you may be one of the millions who suffer from anxiety.

Anxiety can develop from many uncontrollable factors, such as genetics, personality, and life events, but the main issue for many older men is that they have too much time on their hands, according to Dr. Cornelia Cremens, a psychiatrist with Harvard-affiliated Massachusetts General Hospital.

“Men are used to working, being active, and having goals they want to accomplish. It keeps their body and mind engaged,” she says.

“But when they retire and life slows down, they are not prepared for that kind of dramatic shift. This idleness can trigger anxiety because they feel they have lost their purpose and focus.” Read More


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Relaxation Techniques for Health

RelaxationRelaxation Techniques for Health

What’s the Bottom Line?

How much do we know about relaxation techniques?

A substantial amount of research has been done on relaxation techniques. However, for many health conditions, the number or size of the studies has been small, and some studies have been of poor quality.

What do we know about the effectiveness of relaxation techniques?

Relaxation techniques may be helpful in managing a variety of health conditions, including anxiety associated with illnesses or medical procedures, insomnia, labor pain, chemotherapy-induced nausea, and temporomandibular joint dysfunction. Psychological therapies, which may include relaxation techniques, can help manage chronic headaches and other types of chronic pain in children and adolescents. Relaxation techniques have also been studied for other conditions, but either they haven’t been shown to be useful, research results have been inconsistent, or the evidence is limited.

What do we know about the safety of relaxation techniques?

Relaxation techniques are generally considered safe for healthy people, although there have been a few reports of negative experiences such as increased anxiety. People with serious physical or mental health problems should discuss relaxation techniques with their health care providers. Read More


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Why Are You Anxious?

Why Are You Anxious? – Hilary Coller

Ever wondered why you get so anxious? AsapSCIENCE breakdowns the science of anxiety in their NEW VIDEO


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