Many people struggle with chronic stress and anxiety each and every day. Most of the time, they face symptoms like nervousness, agitation, irritability, tension, and even chest pain or tightness.
In fact, did you know that in the United States, more than 18 percent of adults are affected by some type of stress or anxiety disorder each year? When considering such a large number of people, there are likely many for whom drug-based treatments are ineffective, or perhaps even some who simply aren’t comfortable with taking drugs.
If you are one of those people, the TMS Center of Lehigh Valley is here to help you. Check out these five ways that you can treat anxiety without the use of drugs or medication.
Get Plenty of Exercise
Working out is probably one of the last things you feel like doing when running on overdrive, but years of research have suggested that good old fashioned exercise is a great way to burn off anxious energy.
The fact is, physical activity has been shown to raise endorphins and serotonin levels. This has the benefit of making you feel better emotionally. Also, exercise may help to take your mind off of racing or obsessive thoughts,
Try aiming for at least 30 minutes of exercise for three to five days a week. Your workouts don’t need to be physically intense either, any type of movement is good movement!
Meditation and Relaxation Exercises
The ages-old practice of meditation may seem crazy, but the reality is, it can help slow things down, making it easier to manage stress and anxiety. Meditation can encompass a wide range of styles too, including mindfulness and yoga.
Some people have a tendency to unconsciously tense their muscles as a result of stress of anxiety, and when this happens, progressive relaxation techniques can help.
Try lying in a comfortable position on a soft, carpeted floor or on your bed, then slowly constrict and relax each muscle group of your body, beginning with your toes and finally working up to your shoulders and jaw. You may be surprised to learn just how effective this was!
Take a Break from Caffeine
Certain substances like caffeine may make you feel better in the moment, but if this is your go-to when you’re feeling stressed, it may cause your anxiety to worsen over time.
Caffeine consumption gives your nervous system a jolt. While this can have the benefit of raising energy levels, it can also lead to an increase in nervous energy, which can induce an anxiety attack.
We’re not saying you have to quit cold turkey, but it’s all about moderation. Rather than four cups of coffee a day, try scaling it back to one or two normal-sized cups a day. As you attempt to wean yourself, you can slowly introduce new beverages into your diet as well, like decaffeinated herbal tea for example, which actually can calm your nerves.
Aromatherapy and Essential Oils
Here’s a fun one. If you find yourself struggling to relax at home and take your mind off things, consider looking into aromatherapy or an essential oils diffuser. We know this may seem like a hoax, but the ever-increasing popularity of this concept in addition to some recent scientific research seems to suggest that there is something to it.
According to one 2012 study, which tested the effects of lavender aromatherapy on middle aged women with insomnia, suggested that the soothing scent of lavender oil reduced short-term heart rate and eased long-term sleep issues.
Consider TMS Therapy
TMS therapy is an FDA-approved, non-drug, non-invasive treat for mental health. It is designed for those who are not satisfied with the results of usual drug-based medications and psychotherapy.
At TMS Center of Lehigh Valley, our dedicated staff is made up of tireless advocates who, with our expertise and compassion, aim to help those who struggle with mental health.
To learn more about TMS therapy and its many benefits, please contact us as soon as possible. We look forward to hearing from you!