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What Are the Symptoms of Anxiety?

Posted by Shannon Serpette on

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Anyone who has ever experienced anxiety disorder symptoms can tell you -- it’s no joke. You can feel like you’re in need of serious help. You may even wonder if you’re going to die and can be tempted to call for an ambulance when you’re struggling to get through a panic attack.


But can anxiety kill you? Although it can certainly feel like it, your episodes won’t do you in. But they can make your life extremely unpleasant. You can feel fear and anxiety thinking about when the next attack will hit you and how you’ll be able to handle it. 


By teaching yourself about the physical symptoms of anxiety, you can learn what’s normal. That way, the next time you notice an attack that results in several signs off of this anxiety symptoms list, you won’t feel quite so freaked out. 


At the very least, knowing about anxiety physical symptoms will help you cope with what’s going on. Education can give you enough power to make informed decisions about your life and health.


What Are the General Signs of Anxiety Disorder?


An anxiety attack won’t sneak up on you unnoticed. That’s especially true if you have severe anxiety symptoms. They can be crippling and dramatically change the lifestyle of the person suffering from them. 


The signs of a generalized anxiety disorder can include:


  • Feelings of nervousness.
  • Increased heart rate.
  • Feeling restless or tense.
  • Having a sense of impending danger, panic, or doom.
  • Rapid breathing.
  • Difficulties sleeping.
  • Sweating.
  • Feeling tired and weak.
  • Trembling.
  • Inability to take your mind off of present worry.
  • Trouble concentrating. 
  • Wanting to avoid things that cause anxiety, a desire that can be heightened if the person has a specific phobia. 
  • Difficulty controlling worry.
  • Gastrointestinal problems. 

Not everyone who has anxiety will have all of these physical symptoms. You might only find that you have a few common symptoms of anxiety. That doesn’t mean you don’t have the condition or that you shouldn’t seek help for it though. You may still benefit from searching for your own ways to lessen your symptoms or by seeking help from a professional.  


When Should You See a Doctor?


Deciding when to consult a doctor for your signs of anxiety disorder is never an easy determination to make. You might be able to deal with mild issues on your own by avoiding triggers and paying attention to habits that make anxiety worse. By figuring out how to reduce anxiety, you might be able to skip a costly doctor’s visit. 

 

You can also learn about what causes anxiety, the different types of anxiety, and see what can be done for the kind you have.


The first step to determining whether you should see a doctor is figuring out this: What does anxiety mean? It can be tricky because everyone gets worried sometimes and it can be difficult to know what’s normal and what isn’t.


If you have more than mild, occasional worries, you may have some sort of panic disorder. There’s no shame in it -- it’s quite common.


When you have milder symptoms, you can try handling it on your own. Or if you have someone in your life who suffers from anxiety, you can try to help them find ways to deal with it. But one of the things to remember if you love a person with anxiety is that you can do your best to help, but it may not be enough. 


One of the simplest things you can do to help is by finding comforting, small gestures that can have a real impact on anxiety levels, such as buying a weighted blanket. This is a good thing to try when you’re looking for ways of dealing with anxiety without medication


Weighted blankets can help you manage the symptoms of your panic disorder. If you’re having trouble sleeping, they can help you nod off faster. The weight is soothing for those who are stressed out, and they’re good for many medical conditions too, such as Restless Leg Syndrome. 


Anxiety Symptoms in Women


Women are more likely than men to have anxiety disorders. Some estimates say women are twice as likely as men to have them. Part of the reason for that may be because of the hormones women have, such as progesterone and estrogen.


But women seem to feel more comfortable admitting they have an issue and perhaps seeking medical help for it than men do. Women often have many of the traditional anxiety symptoms, such as trouble sleeping, difficulty concentrating, and extreme nervousness.


If you’re a woman, that doesn’t mean you’re doomed to have anxiety -- just that you are likelier to have it. But there is good news as well. Women generally feel more comfortable talking about their issues and confiding in their friends. And a strong social network can be a powerful tool when dealing with this problem. Sometimes the best way to deal with anxiety is to take your mind off of it, and what better way is there to do that than penciling in time with your favorite friends?


Anxiety Symptoms in Men


Many men are conditioned to be tough guys right from the start. They are taught to shrug off pain and to be mentally, emotionally, and physically tough. So it can be hard for guys to admit they’re struggling with something like anxiety. They may worry that others will think they are weak, which can make them seem irrationally angry at times.


Sometimes that can lead to them choosing unhealthy ways to cover up their emotions. Anxious men are likelier than women to resort to substance abuse, including alcohol and drugs, than women are. 


That can lead to bigger problems down the road for them, so it would be better if they accepted their anxiety issues and tried to deal with them rather than numbing the pain with substances. 


Anxiety Symptoms in Children


Even children aren’t immune to this condition. They can experience social phobias, generalized anxiety disorder, and they also have the added burden of separation anxiety in which they fear something will happen to rip their family apart.


When children have anxiety, it can lead to headaches, diarrhea, trouble sleeping, emotional outbursts, and recurring stomach aches. Many worried parents have taken their children to doctors for recurring stomach aches only to be told that the problem is in the child’s head rather than in their tummy.


That doesn’t mean the child is lying about their physical symptoms though -- they really are happening. Parents can feel frustrated by that but can help by trying to get to the root cause of their child’s anxiety.


Don’t Ignore The Symptoms


If you or someone you love is suffering from panic symptoms, it’s best to do something about it. You don’t have to live this way. 


Whether you try remedies on your own, such as deep breathing and weighted blankets, or you seek the help of a professional, you can live a better life without all these troubling symptoms. 


The first step is admitting there’s an issue and doing your best to resolve it. You’ll figure out solutions that work best for you, but there may be some trial and error at first. Just don’t give up. Keep looking for solutions and you’ll find some that help you live your best life!

Anxiety Blog Post Mental Health

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