Are you finding it difficult to accomplish tasks like you used to?
Are you more irritable than usual?
Do you have trouble sleeping, concentrating, or relaxing?
If so, you may have an anxiety problem.
Anxiety is becoming increasingly prevalent in the modern world. And while anti-anxiety medication is available, it often treats the symptoms rather than the cause.
At the Mindful Healing Clinic, Dr. Maria offers naturopathic solutions for anxiety which may help you.
What Is Anxiety?
Anxiety is a natural human response to a stressful event in life, and it’s not always a bad thing.
If you have a big presentation to give in the morning, or a date with your crush, you may feel anxious before. It’s a form of nervousness that evolved to help make sure we’re paying attention to a potentially dangerous situation – like a sabre tooth tiger around the corner – and keep us safe.
Mild anxiety can be a vague, unsettled feeling, a quiet fear or an underlying sense of dread. Severe anxiety, though, can interfere with your ability to live a normal life.
How Do I Know If I Have Anxiety?
According to Statistics Canada’s 2014 study on Canadian mental health (the most recent data at the time of writing), up to 3 million Canadians will face an anxiety disorder at any given time.
The problem, though, is that many people don’t even realize what they’re feeling is anxiety. For some facing anxiety, it’s been a lifelong condition, and just seems normal.
However, if you’re dealing with any of the following symptoms, you may have an anxiety disorder:
- Non-athletic sweating
- Chronic fatigue or weakness
- Increased heart rate or blood pressure
- Digestive issues
- Difficulty controlling worry
- A sense of impending danger or panic
- Restless limbs
- Tension in the spine or jaw
These symptoms on their own may not be life-threatening. However, anxiety disorders can significantly impact the quality of your life, from your relationships to your mental health to your career.
What Does Anxiety Look Like?
Anxiety can show up in many different ways.
One is agoraphobia, where you generally avoid situations that leave you feeling helpless or anxious. It’s named for the Greek word “agora”, or house, because this disorder can sometimes manifest itself in a fear of leaving one’s house.
If you have a panic disorder, you may experience a sudden bout of intense anxiety. They can come on suddenly and reach their zenith within minutes of striking, making it difficult to predict. These panic attacks can manifest themselves many different ways, but often you’ll experience shortness of breath, heart palpitations, and a feeling of doom. The presence of these panic attacks can increase your general level of anxiety due to the uncertainty in their arrival.
You may also have a generalized anxiety disorder, which is a general case of persistent worry about life. What makes this a disorder is the fact that it’s difficult to control, is out of proportion to how one ought to feel based on the circumstances, and persists for longer than any specific event.
Other anxiety disorders include phobias, separation anxiety, social anxiety, and substance-based anxiety.
A Naturopathic Approach To Anxiety
Naturopathic medicine addresses your health concerns from a full-body perspective. As a result, while you may feel your anxiety in your mind, there’s likely more going on.
In fact, diet and digestion have a lot to do with anxiety.
Modern science is finding a deep connection between the health of our gut microbiome and our mental health. For a long time, it was thought that digestive disorders like Crohn’s, colitis, and celiac caused anxiety because of how difficult they can be to live with. However, we’re finding that the reverse may also be true.
If you’re experiencing an anxiety disorder, dietary and lifestyle changes, especially to take care of your gut microbiome, can make a difference.
Contact Dr. Maria at the Mindful Healing Clinic to find out more about the solutions naturopathic medicine has for your anxiety.