Many anxiety sufferers turn to medication in an attempt to control stress and alleviate anxiety and panic attacks, but unfortunately, anxiety medications are not always a panacea to restore emotional balance and calm. In fact, anxiety medications do not “cure” anxiety at all — they merely attempt to lessen the symptoms by suppressing the emotional range of the sufferer.
It is also well-known that many anti-anxiety medications have a wide variety of side effects, ranging from weight gain to sexual dysfunction; and in some circumstances, the medications can even make the patient’s anxiety worse. Fortunately there are alternative methods of restoring balance and eliminating anxiety, without the use of prescription medications. Let’s take a look at a few of the most common methods of controlling and even eliminating anxiety without resorting to potentially dangerous drugs.
Anxiety is not a disease; it is an imbalance of the emotions. In other words, anxiety is a problem that is most commonly caused by our habitual way of thinking and reacting to the world–it’s a type of “thinking problem.” Therefore, the ideal way to alleviate anxiety and panic attacks is by addressing the root cause, not just the symptoms, and this can best be done by using exercises and techniques to reduce stress and improve feelings of well-being on a daily basis.
Relaxation exercises have been clinically proven to significantly reduce anxiety symptoms. Techniques such as tai chi and yoga benefit many anxiety sufferers, and can be practiced by virtually anyone of any age (assuming they are physically healthy and capable of mild to moderate exertion). Both tai chi and yoga are exercises which help to calm the mind, and can improve our mental focus and clarity by “slowing down” our thought processes, and concentrating on breath and movement.
In fact, focused breathing exercises are themselves a useful tool to reduce stress. Meditation is a similar practice that has also been proven to have a positive effect on restoring balance to the emotions, and even improve the functioning of the immune system and our overall physical health. All of these techniques are great alternatives to using anxiety medications, and best of all they are all natural, and have no known side effects or withdrawal symptoms.
But along with all of these stress reduction techniques, it is also important to eat a balanced diet, and limit our intake of stimulants such as caffeine and nicotine, both of which have been shown to aggravate anxiety symptoms. Cutting out (or at least cutting down on) coffee and soft drinks is important for anxiety sufferers. Reducing sugar intake is also helpful to avoid the “wired” feelings that can sometimes bring on anxiety or panic attacks.
Another aspect of your diet that can affect anxiety is food allergies. While there are many different types of food allergies that can cause emotional imbalances like anxiety, one commonly undiagnosed food allergy is dairy products. Some anxiety sufferers report immediate reduction in their overall feelings of stress and anxiety by simply eliminating dairy from their diet.
And last but certainly not least, anxiety sufferers should consider their overall attitude and state of mind. Because anxiety is a thinking problem, and not a disease, our habitual thoughts play a great role in its development. Positive thinking is not just for motivational speakers or the blissfully ignorant among us — is also an extremely useful tool in restoring balance to our lives, and eliminating chronic anxiety. In fact, there is no anti-anxiety medication on the market that is as powerful as your mind!
Refusing to be a victim and assuming responsibility for your state of mind is empowering, and can have very real, measurable results in improving anxiety situations. After all, anxiety and panic attacks begin with thoughts, which just prove how powerful our thoughts can be.
This is great news for anxiety sufferers, because if our thoughts are powerful enough to generate an anxiety attack in the first place, they are also powerful enough to eliminate anxiety problems, and bring us back into a balanced emotional state. When anxiety medications do not provide relief from the problem, using a combination of the all-natural methods listed in this article is a great alternative to overcoming anxiety and panic attacks once and for all.
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