Remedies For Anxiety
What Causes Anxiety?
There is no single cause for anxiety conditions but rather a number of risk factors that may contribute to developing an anxiety condition.
Family History Of Mental Health Conditions
Some people who experience anxiety conditions may have a genetic predisposition towards anxiety and these conditions can sometimes run in a family. However, having a parent or close relative experience anxiety or other mental health condition doesn’t mean you’ll automatically develop anxiety. A number of other factors play a role, including personality factors, adverse life experiences and current life circumstances.
Research suggests that people with certain personality traits are more likely to have anxiety. For example, children who are perfectionists, easily flustered, timid, and inhibited, lack self-esteem or want to control everything, sometimes develop anxiety during childhood, adolescence or as adults.
Ongoing stressful events
Anxiety conditions may develop because of one or more stressful life events. Common triggers include:
- work stress or job change
- change in living arrangements
- pregnancy and giving birth
- family and relationship problems
- major emotional shock following a stressful or traumatic event
- verbal, sexual, physical or emotional abuse or trauma
- Death or loss of a loved one.
Physical health problems
Chronic physical illness can also contribute to anxiety conditions or impact on the treatment of either the anxiety or the physical illness itself. Common chronic conditions associated with anxiety conditions include:
- hypertension and heart disease
Some physical conditions can mimic anxiety conditions, like an overactive thyroid. It can be useful to see a doctor and be assessed to determine whether there may be a medical cause for your feelings of anxiety.
Other mental health conditions
While some people may experience an anxiety condition on its own, others may experience multiple anxiety conditions, or other mental health conditions. Depression and anxiety conditions often occur together. It’s important to check for and get assistance for all these conditions at the same time.
Herbal Remedies for Anxiety
If you have a jittery moment, a cuppa chamomile tea might help calm you down. Some compounds in chamomile (Matricaria recutita) bind to the same brain receptors as drugs like Valium.
You can also take it as a supplement, typically standardized to contain 1.2% apigenin (an active ingredient), along with dried chamomile flowers. In one study at the University of Pennsylvania Medical Center, in Philadelphia, patients with generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) who took chamomile supplements for eight weeks had a significant decrease in anxiety symptoms compared to patients taking placebo.
They say Japanese Buddhist monks could meditate for hours, both alert and relaxed. One reason may have been an amino acid in their green tea called L-theanine, says Mark Blumenthal, of the American Botanical Council.
Research shows that L-theanine helps curb a rising heart rate and blood pressure, and a few small human studies have found that it reduces anxiety. In one study, anxiety-prone subjects were calmer and more focused during a test if they took 200 milligrams of L-theanine beforehand.
You can get that much L-theanine from green tea, but you’ll have to drink many cups—as few as five, as many as 20.
Yes, it’s in beer, but you won’t get the tranquilizing benefits of the bitter herb hops (Humulus lupulus) from a brew. The sedative compound in hops is a volatile oil, so you get it in extracts and tinctures—and as aromatherapy in hops pillows.
“It’s very bitter, so you don’t see it in tea much, unless combined with chamomile or mint,” says Blumenthal. Hops is often used as a sedative, to promote sleep, often with another herb, valerian. Note: Don’t take sedative herbs if you are taking a prescription tranquilizer or sedative, and let your doctor know any supplements you are taking.
One study found that people who received a massage with lavender oil were more upbeat and had less anxiety than people who had a lavender-free massage. Another found lavender massage can even lower systolic pressure the top blood pressure number that’s associated with stress. Try putting a few drops of lavender essential oil on your pillow or in your bath, or add a few drops to a cup of boiling water and inhale for a quick calm-me-down. You can even dab a few drops right on your skin—it’s one of the few essential oils that can be applied directly. The scent of vanilla has also been shown to alleviate symptoms of anxiety. In a study done at the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, patients undergoing MRIs who breathed vanilla-scented air had 63% less anxiety than those who breathed unscented air.
5.Cannabis and CBD Oil
The use of cannabis home grown from seeds from places like cbd oil king in the treatment of anxiety disorders was first described by ancient Indian medical literature, which said that cannabis helped its user to be “delivered from all worries and care” (Da Orta 1563).
But as modern-day researchers have discovered, the relationship between marijuana use and anxiety is a lot more complex. For example, while it is true that reduced anxiety is a commonly given reason for using cannabis, reports also show that frequent marijuana users tend to have higher levels of anxiety.
Using cannabis to self-medicate one’s anxiety may help to explain these conflicting findings. However, research suggests that marijuana — at different doses — can have opposite effects on anxiety as well.
Studies show that the endocannabinoid system – the body’s natural cannabinoid system – plays a major role in regulating anxiety. Cannabinoid receptors – the binding sites of cannabinoids – are highly concentrated in certain parts of the brain that are responsible for anxiety, including the amygdala and hypothalamus. This can also explain the rise of CBD oil sales that are perfectly legal in most countries, CBD oil eliquids are heavily used for pain management and anxiety relief, and is mainly used for medicated purposes.
Interestingly, studies show that patients experience higher levels of anxiety when cannabinoid receptors are blocked by drugs such as rimonabant. Likewise, regular cannabis users report that marijuana helps to reduce their anxiety levels.
Research has also linked the endocannabinoid system to the extinction of bad memories – supporting its potential role in treating post-traumatic stress disorder – as well as the growth of new brain cells (neurogenesis), which is believed to improve anxiety levels.
On the other hand, paranoia and anxiety attacks are some of most commonly reported side-effects of marijuana use, especially in new and infrequent users. Indeed, studies have revealed a complex link between cannabinoids and anxiety, suggesting that marijuana’s effect on anxiety depends on both the dosage taken as well as the type of cannabinoids that are present.
THC’s Effect on Anxiety:
Studies conducted on both animals and humans have revealed a surprising effect of THC on anxiety. That is, THC seems to have opposite effects on anxiety levels depending on the dosage, with THC acting to decrease anxiety at lower doses yet increasing anxiety at higher doses.
On the other hand, experts believe that studies involving pure THC fail to accurately portray the effects of marijuana on anxiety, since cannabis contains over 60 different cannabinoid compounds.
Most notably, marijuana contains a compound called cannabidiol (CBD), which has also drawn significant interest as a potential treatment for anxiety disorders.
CBD’s Effect on Anxiety:
While THC acts primarily on the CB1 receptors that are found in high concentrations throughout the brain, CBD seems to have little to no effect on CB1 receptors. Still, studies have found CBD to play a major role in regulating anxiety and have even suggested that it may be a more effective treatment than THC for anxiety disorders.
The first study to document CBD’s effect on anxiety was published in 1982. The study found that CBD could block the anxiety provoked by THC among 8 healthy test subjects, implying that CBD-rich marijuana strains may be a better option for relieving anxiety.
Research on CBD’s anti-anxiety effects has picked up again in recent years, with studies confirming its ability to reduce anxiety levels in both healthy and sick individuals.
The first study to investigate its therapeutic role in patients with anxiety disorders was published in 2011 by researchers at the University of Sao Paulo in Brazil. The study involved giving a 400mg dose of CBD to 10 patients diagnosed with social anxiety disorder, who then underwent a brain scan. The results showed that CBD – compared to placebo – was able to significantly decrease subjective anxiety measures as well as activity in certain parts of the brain normally associated with anxiety.
Another study published by the same group of researchers later in 2011 involved 24 patients with social anxiety disorder, who were given a 600 mg dose of CBD before undergoing a simulated public speaking test (meant to induce anxiety). The results showed that a single dose of CBD taken 90 minutes before the public speaking simulation could reduce anxiety as well as cognitive impairment and discomfort during speech performance.