While anxiety is a mental illness, it can also cause physical symptoms which can have an impact on your day-to-day life. Your brain and body are interconnected, so any sort of panic or fear can have resulting effects on your physical body as well. On their own, the physical effects often won’t go away until the anxiety itself has been managed or lessened and in most cases, even after you are feeling better, you will still be quite weak and tired. So finding ways to help manage your anxiety and understanding how it affects your body is essential.
Here are some ways anxiety affects your body and how medical strength CBD for anxiety may help.
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Most Common Physical Symptoms of Anxiety
- stomach pain, nausea, or digestive trouble
- weakness or fatigue
- rapid breathing or shortness of breath
- pounding heart or increased heart rate
- trembling or shaking
- muscle tension or pain
There are also more severe symptoms that may be associated with a panic attack. These ones are far more noticeable and likely to be a major disruption if they are experienced in your day-to-day life:
- feel lightheaded and dizzy
- feel overheated or have chills
- fear that you’re going to die
- have trouble breathing or feel as if you’re choking
- have numb or tingling sensations in parts of your body
- have chest pain
Why Do These Symptoms Occur?
At its core, feelings of Anxiety are your body activating its fight-or-flight response. When your body reacts to stress, it treats it as an external threat and prepares you to survive. The body is doing its best to help you but simply doesn’t understand that stress is a mental threat only and cannot physically harm you.
This is why your body’s danger response includes rapid breathing, preparing for possible escape and shakiness in limbs as it anticipates a need to fight or run. Unfortunately, because these symptoms are highly uncomfortable, they often cause even further stress, thus making the symptoms worse. This is why it is important to identify that anxiety is causing these feelings, and then work to find ways to return yourself to a more relaxed state before things get worse.
Identifying And Easing Anxiety
While in the midst of feeling the physical effects, it can be easy to fixate on them and not be able to realize that the cause of them is anxiety. Whatever may have caused the initial anxious feelings is forgotten, replaced instead with stress about the breathing issues or shaking. Here are some tips to break the cycle.
Stop and assess. Take a moment to observe exactly what you are feeling, try and think back on when the feelings started and if they are related to a feeling of emotional upset or a reaction to something alarming or stressful. If your symptoms followed a stressful event or period of time, it’s possible these emotions triggered your symptoms. Try to remember what causes the anxiety trigger and then work back from there.
Distract yourself. One of the best ways to lessen symptoms of anxiety is to distract yourself from them. Something that uses both your hands and your mind is important, the harder you have to think to do the task, the less you will be able to dwell on what is making you anxious. Something like a jigsaw puzzle, or playing a game on your phone can be a great method of distraction. If you don’t have anything on hand that can help, doing multiplication out loud can also be helpful, even more so if another person can do it with you. If you suffer from anxiety often, working out a list of things that help can prepare you for future episodes.
Reassure yourself. If you believe your symptoms are being caused by anxiety, reassure yourself that what you are experiencing is not harmful or fatal. Even if the symptoms may be frightening, remember what is causing them and remind yourself that there is no immediate danger. The symptoms will pass when the anxiety eases.
Remember to relax even as symptoms begin to ease. It might be tempting to return to your usual schedule when the panic stops, but your body and mind will still be sensitive for some time, give yourself enough time to calm back down and return to normal. For some people, CBD for anxiety may be able to provide some relief at this time and help you get back to a state of calm.
Overcoming the physical symptoms of anxiety can seem a daunting task, especially in the midst of an attack, but it is important to remember that your body is trying its best to protect you and that the symptoms will pass. If you are a frequent sufferer of anxiety it may be beneficial to look into medical cannabis and anxiety to see how it may be able to help, while also learning more about what specifically helps you. Everyone is different, so learn about yourself first.