The Ultimate Guide to Managing Anxiety in 2024

by Dr. Nick Zyrowski June 23, 2024

Let’s be honest; most of us have some form of anxiety. How can we not, with immediate access to news, social media, and stressful careers that seem to take more of our time than ever before? Some days it may seem hard to take a deep breath. If this strikes a nerve with you, you are not alone. Mental health is a crucial aspect of your overall well-being, so today’s article will focus on methods you can use to manage and reduce your anxiety symptoms.

Why medicine doesn’t work

Many people go to their doctors and express the symptoms of anxiety only to get about ten minutes of a conversation where they don’t truly feel heard. Your physician may note a few keywords, write a script for anti-anxiety medications or antidepressants, and send you on your way. The problem with that is many of these drugs can harm your brain and put you at risk for other health conditions. (1)

Multiple side effects come with these medications, like nausea, insomnia, headaches, digestion issues, and weight gain.This is not an exhaustive list, and other, more serious, issues may occur, like heart rhythm disorders and Serotonin syndrome. (2)

Causes of anxiety

Causes of anxiety can be very specific to the individual. Since everyone is unique, we want you to know there are many methods to deal with your anxiety.

Stress

Most of us deal with a certain level of stress, but it can reach an overwhelming point. Sometimes things can culminate when you have job stress, family stress, and health issues, at the same time. If you’ve had more stress than usual, this could be the root cause of your sudden anxiety.

Gut health issues

We’ve talked a lot about having good gut health. Your gut affects the neurotransmitters in your brain, so having an unhealthy gut is the reason many people begin to feel anxious when they can’t pinpoint another cause. (3)

Thyroid problems

If you have thyroid issues, these can affect your mood. Many doctors use a range when doing lab testing, and if you’re at the low end of the normal range, you probably won’t get any medication to help.

Autoimmune issues

Some people who experience autoimmune disorders can have anxiety and depression. If it doesn’t get addressed, it can affect the entire body, both mentally and physically.

Caffeine

So many of us drink copious amounts of coffee and other drinks that contain tons of caffeine. Some people especially cannot handle caffeine well, and it can cause worsening anxiety for them. Pay special attention to how much caffeine you consume. (4)

Brain inflammation

Most people don’t hear about this, but if you have any inflammation in the brain, it can cause all sorts of issues, especially depression and anxiety.

There are more causes, but these are some of the ones that can affect your mood. If you have had any of these issues, they may be the root causes of your anxiety symptoms.

Anxiety symptoms

Some individuals don’t realize they are experiencing anxiety. Remember, the body is connected, so what may appear as one issue can be masking another. For instance, if you’re having trouble sleeping, it can be a result of anxiety or having anxious thoughts that appear more frequenlty when everything is quiet. (5)

Sometimes people get irritable and aren’t sure why they feel more moody than usual. You may also feel less focused and have some physical manifestations, like digestive discomfort and cardiovascular symptoms. Many people experience all these symptoms, which can make their lives miserable.

Fixing the problem

There are many positive changes you can take that are all-natural and will make an incredible difference in your anxiety levels. Some of these are so simple that they may surprise you.

Anti-inflammatory diet and supplements

One of the first things you can do to improve your anxiety issues is to change your diet. Cut out the sugar and processed foods. (6) Often, the foods you eat are making you sick in various ways. Think of what you consume in a short timeframe. Do you hit the local drive-through a few times each week? What about sugary sodas and foods with numerous ingredients and artificial flavors that make you overeat? These can not only be addictive, but they can also be detrimental to your health.

Start eating whole foods that contain plenty of nutrients your body needs. You want foods loaded with B vitamins and healthy omega-3 fatty acids. You can also supplement with a quality B complex and omega-3s.

Don’t forget the importance of magnesium. Many of our patients are deficient in this vital mineral. Magnesium is involved in over 300 processes in your body, and relaxation of the brain is included. When you have anxiety, you need a specific magnesium that calms the brain. In our practice, we have found that Neurocalm has been highly successful in helping people decrease anxiety but also to get a good night’s sleep.

Get quality sleep

Sleep is the foundation of youth and health. If you aren’t getting good quality sleep, you simply cannot function well no matter what else you do. If you have trouble sleeping, try to implement a bedtime routine, like dimming the lights a couple of hours before bed, lowering the temperature to make it colder in your bedroom, and even taking a warm bath to help you unwind.

Reduce stress

Often when we mention this, we get the typical eye roll from those who are under tremendous daily stress. We know sometimes stress can be unavoidable, but there are methods you can begin using today that can make stress much more bearable. Meditation is a fantastic way to take just a few minutes a day to calm your brain. You don’t have to be a professional to practice this, and there are tons of YouTube videos on easy ways to meditate.

Journaling is an excellent way to reduce stress. Often, just writing down your stream of consciousness and getting your thoughts on paper can be enough to help you relax.

Put your phone down. Many of us spend hours on our phones each day, looking at social media or news apps. After a while, these can cause frustration and anxiety. Spend some time away from your television and your electronic devices. Too much input coming into your brain can cause negative impacts on your mental state and will affect your health.

You can ease anxiety today

Our hearts go out to anyone suffering from anxious thoughts. Most of us have experienced this at some time or other in our lives. We want you to know that you can get better, and you can begin today. These methods are natural, and they can start helping you right away. Take some time to focus on your routines and make some changes to put yourself first, so that you can get better and release those anxious thought patterns. We are always here to help every step of the way in your health journey, so contact us with any questions or for more information on how you can reduce anxiety and live a healthier, more peaceful life.

References

https://bbrfoundation.org/research/anxiety?gad_source=1&gclid=Cj0KCQjwvb-zBhCmARIsAAfUI2sn7ZRYhWXEFm1Pue-fqFAflGgd7OrqLGwKTdeKSd_yotL-RJWm8xMaAqKSEALw_wcB

https://www.amenclinics.com/brain-health/anxiety-3/?utm_source=google&utm_campaign=G_HighPriority_Anxiety_BOF_SRCH_NB_CONV_Evergreen_Standard&utm_medium=cpc&utm_content=16443463621-162610267113-696858025900&gad_source=1&gclid=Cj0KCQjwvb-zBhCmARIsAAfUI2t2n282ZOZe1Ah1uIIzIKmjlEQyexdMvr26ADBYbiAUXA6T8Xv7ee8aAvQ0EALw_wcB

https://www.nhs.uk/mental-health/talking-therapies-medicine-treatments/medicines-and-psychiatry/antidepressants/side-effects/

https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/wellness-and-prevention/the-brain-gut-connection

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC10867825/

https://www.sleepfoundation.org/mental-health/anxiety-and-sleep

https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/eating-well-to-help-manage-anxiety-your-questions-answered-2018031413460#:~:text=Avoiding%20processed%20foods%20and%20foods,can%20mimic%20a%20panic%20attack.

Dr. Nick Zyrowski
Dr. Nick Zyrowski