We all experience anxiety or worry at some time in our lives. Although these two words are often used interchangeably, we might think of worry as allowing our thoughts to dwell on past, present, or future negative situations or possibilities. Anxiety, on the other hand, may include:
- Mental symptoms such as worry, impaired concentration, difficulty with memory and recall, cognitive distortions and catastrophizing
- Emotional symptoms such as edginess, irritability, panic
- Physical symptoms such as fatigue, difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep, hyperarousal
Four Common Anxiety Triggers You Can Control:
Switch to decaf or better yet herbal tea. Caffeine is a stimulant that can trigger an anxiety attack. It is also extremely acidic, which leads to inflammation (bad for overall health) and a diuretic (contributes to dehydration).
As with caffeine, alcohol is acidic and dehydrating. Drinking can also overwork your liver and may interfere with your body’s ability to properly use oxygen, which can make you more sensitive to stress. Also, alcohol masks the symptoms of anxiety and is a form of self-medication that ultimately exacerbates the problem.
As mentioned above, alcohol and caffeine lead to dehydration, as do processed and sugary foods and a general lack of sufficient hydration. Dehydration interferes with proper brain and body functioning, which can be a trigger for anxiety and depression. Aim to consume half of your body weight in ounces of water per day.
Lack of sleep can make you more vulnerable to anxiety by making you edgy, unfocused, and hormonally imbalanced. Seven to eight hours of sleep a night is recommended for your body to renew, restore, and replenish. Try some of my tips for a better night’s rest.