The symptoms of anxiety are many and individual, but they are easy to recognize as we have all experienced periods of anxiety during our lifetimes. Normal anxiety can be experienced as short term, or mid-term.
Short term anxiety lasts less than 24 hours, while mid-term anxiety may last several days, or even weeks, while undergoing a particularly stressful time in your life. A certain amount of anxiety is normal, as it is a natural part of our bodies “fight or flight” response to stressful situations. Given a stressful situation, we will automatically feel anxious. This level of anxiety produces simple symptoms such as body tension, sweating, feelings of weakness or being full of nervous energy.
Longer term anxiety, or anxiety that isn’t triggered by a stressful situation, may indicate an anxiety disorder. If you are constantly anxious, it will have a detrimental effect on your health and life. Often those suffering chronic anxiety will try to avoid any potentially stressful situation, and isolate themselves in the process.
While the experience of normal levels of anxiety may involve feelings of worry or fear, excess levels of anxiety may bring about a panic attack with its accompanying physical symptoms.
The symptoms of a panic or anxiety attack include:
1. Shortness of breath
2. Chest pain or feelings of tightness
3. Trembling, shaking, tremors
4. Heart palpitations, racing heart
7. Feeling hot and flushed, or cold chills
If you suffer these physical symptoms you may think you are having a heart attack as they share similar symptoms. While this may add to your levels of anxiousness, no-one has ever died of an anxiety attack.
If you think you may be suffering from an anxiety disorder treatment should be sought as early as possible, before suffering physical anxiety attacks.
The treatment for anxiety should be two-pronged, addressing both the physical and mental states. Simple relaxation methods, and breathing techniques aimed at calming both the body and mind are a great place to start in relieving the symptoms of anxiety.