As one of the most prominent medical conditions in the world, anxiety can be detrimental to your mental health if not treated properly. Anxiety can also affect your physical health – from high blood pressure and its many cascading side effects to sleeplessness and its effects therein. Whether you struggle with it consistently in the form of Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) or experience flare-ups activated by major life events or more specific “triggers,” practicing healthy habits to manage anxiety can make all the difference in how you feel every day.
From forming coping mechanisms on your own to reaching out for help when it becomes too much, follow along below for five healthy habits to practice when you’re struggling with anxiety.
- Talking to a Someone you Trust
While talking to a therapist can help you overcome your anxiety altogether, sharing your issues with people you trust goes a long way in helping manage your anxiety on a day-to-day basis. Your friends and family might not have expert advice to give, but sometimes having someone there just to listen to you is enough to take the majority of the stress off your shoulders—and leave you feeling much better. Affirmation and support from trusted others in your life is essential!
- Exercising Regularly
In addition to the many physical benefits that come with exercising on a consistent and regular basis, it can tremendously improve your mental health too. Exercise helps to reduce stress and to alleviate feelings of anxiety by relieving built-up tension in your body.
According to Harvard Health Publishing, “Exercise reduces levels of the body’s stress hormones, such as adrenaline and cortisol. It also stimulates the production and release of endorphins – chemicals in the brain that are the body’s natural painkillers and mood elevators.”
- Practicing Mindfulness
Mindfulness is, ironically, the most forgotten healthy habit you can practice when attempting to reduce anxiety. Practicing mindfulness is simple and can be done in any setting. All you have to do is take a few deep breaths, be aware of your surroundings, and ground yourself in the present moment. “Be here now” is a popular mantra to help with mindfulness. Still yourself, relax, take in your environment as an observer. Become aware of your present existence. It becomes easy with practice and truly helps towards a more relaxed mindset!
- Forming Healthy Sleep Habits
Practicing good “sleep hygiene” is essential to reducing stress – which often can trigger anxiety. People who experience more deep sleep at night have the least anxiety the following day. Sleep deprivation creates an imbalance in hormone levels that drives anxiety levels higher. Too little sleep boosts adrenaline, which in-turn aggravates pre-existing anxiety, taking your day from bad to worse. From weight control to boosted immunity, science is still learning about the natural wonders of a healthy sleep schedule.
- Getting Outside at Least Once a Day
Reminding yourself to step outside at least once a day can do wonders for your mental health and helps to alleviate anxiety. Sunlight signals specific areas of the retina and triggers the release of serotonin. Higher levels of serotonin give your body a boost of energy and happiness, while lower levels of serotonin can pose a higher risk of anxiety. Fresh air, the aromas of flowers, the feel of breezes against your skin, the sounds of birds and even city noises in the background all provide positive stimulation that help to “anchor” you to your life and to remind you that there is more going on than whatever is causing you anxiety. Doses of nature and the outdoors are potent “reality checks” in the best sense of the phrase!
Treating Anxiety with New Pathways Clinic
Mild cases of anxiety are expected from time to time in everyone’s life as challenges present themselves, but for some individuals, anxiety controls their life and makes it difficult or even impossible to perform everyday tasks. Long-term use of anxiety medication poses addiction risks and can leave the individual feeling “dull” or chronically tired. Another option for treating anxiety comes in the form of ketamine infusion treatments for anxiety, available at New Pathways Clinic as one of our core offerings.
In recent years, ketamine infusions have been clinically proven to reduce or eliminate most anxiety symptoms and to outperform traditional anxiety medication for many patients. Contact us today to minimize your symptoms with ketamine treatments for anxiety from New Pathways Clinic – scheduling is easy and can accommodate your lifestyle.