About one in every four Canadians will experience an anxiety disorder at some point in their lifetime. And contrary to popular belief, anxiety is more than just being overly worried.
Anxiety can drastically impact your day-to-day life. It may prevent a person from participating in activities they enjoy or from socializing. It can even stop a person from leaving their own home. Undeniably, it can be very debilitating.
The American Psychological Association (APA) categorizes anxiety as “an emotion characterized by feelings of tension, worried thoughts and physical changes like increased blood pressure.” When a person has an anxiety disorder, they may experience recurring intrusive thoughts, sweating, dizziness, a rapid heartbeat, and trembling. Anxiety can further fall under various disorders including phobias, panic disorders, social anxiety disorder, PTSD, obsessive-compulsive disorder and separation anxiety disorder.
Luckily, there are many treatments available for anxiety disorders — including naturopathic treatments. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the symptoms of anxiety and how naturopathic medicine can help.
Common Symptoms of Anxiety
Anxiety can manifest in various ways, often depending on the specific individual. You might feel constantly worried and scared. You may experience panic attacks. Or you may associate certain settings or places with fear.
Generally, the common symptoms of anxiety include:
- Trouble sleeping and/or falling asleep
- Rapid or increased heart rate
- Rapid or increased breathing
- Feelings of restlessness
What is Naturopathy?
Naturopathy is a medicinal approach that uses natural methods and treatments. A naturopath focuses on the body as a whole, including the mind, body, and spirit — which addresses the root cause, not just the symptoms.
However, they don’t only treat diseases or illness. They can also help with anxiety disorders, finding ways to help you cope or resolve your anxiety naturally.
Naturopathic Treatments for Anxiety
Many experts suggest that natural remedies may be the best way to treat anxiety. In fact, embracing a healthy lifestyle doesn’t only help your anxiety; it can improve other aspects of your life as well. So, what can you expect for anxiety treatment when visiting a naturopath?
1. Diet Changes
Interestingly, some research has shown that the gut microbiome may play a role in anxiety disorders. A naturopath can address any of these issues and help you find a healthy balance for your gut. They do this by looking into your diet and finding areas where improvements can be made.
2. Addressing Nutritional Deficiencies
Supplements and herbs may be used to help with nutritional deficiencies including GABA, L-theanine, lavender, ashwagandha and more. Such supplements may reduce the frequency, intensity and length of an anxiety or panic attack.
3. Stress Management Techniques
In addition to looking at your diet and nutritional intake, a naturopath can help you with coping mechanisms. They may introduce you to specific stress management techniques that they believe will help you and your situation. For instance, they may suggest meditation, yoga, breathwork or progressive muscle relaxation.
Acupuncture is a treatment method where small and thin needles are inserted at specific points in the body. It can help relax the body and relieve anxiety. If your naturopath deems it suitable, they may use this as part of your treatment plan.
5. Improving Other Lifestyle Factors
Other lifestyle factors, such as staying active, sleeping on a set schedule, and reducing stimulants, such as alcohol and caffeine, may also help your anxiety. Ultimately, your naturopath will choose the most appropriate treatment plan suited to you and your needs.
If you live in Calgary, Alberta and have been on the hunt for the right naturopath for you, look no further! At Active Back To Health, our team includes an experienced naturopath, Dr. Lindsay Kellington, who is ready to help you. Contact our clinic today to book your next appointment.