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What You Can Do to Manage Your Anxiety

All of us experience anxiety at some point in our lives. We might feel a little frightened or worried about an upcoming exam, a new job or something we’ve seen or heard of that is going to happen to someone we care about. However, when anxiety starts to interfere with everyday activities and cause you to miss work or school, it could be time to talk to your doctor about getting help.

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When anxiety isn’t treated, it can be hard to cope with and it can affect the way you think and behave. It can also have negative effects on your health and make it harder to enjoy life.

There are many things you can do to manage your anxiety and feel better, including:

Exercise – Physical activity can reduce your stress levels and help you sleep. It can also improve your mood and self-esteem.

Talk – Therapy can help you learn coping skills to better handle your anxiety and stress. It can also help you understand how your thinking and behavior are contributing to your symptoms and give you tools to change them.

Family – Therapy can help you and your family understand the ways your anxiety is impacting your family and how to support each other. It can also help you deal with other people who may be making your symptoms worse.

Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) is an effective treatment for anxiety disorders and can be used alone or in combination with medication. CBT teaches you how to change your thoughts and behaviours that are making you anxious, so you can stop feeling afraid or overwhelmed.

Medications – Drugs can be effective in treating certain types of anxiety disorders, but they must be carefully chosen and a health care provider must ensure that they’re safe for you. Some drugs can aggravate the symptoms of anxiety, so you’ll need to work closely with your health care provider to choose which medications are best for you.

Avoiding substances – Some substances can make your symptoms of anxiety worse or make your medication work less effectively. They include caffeine, some over-the-counter cold medicines, herbal supplements and illegal drugs.

Try relaxation techniques – Yoga, meditation and other forms of meditation are effective in relieving stress and helping you sleep. Relaxation techniques can also help you manage your emotions and boost your energy level so you can get more done.

Social connections – Being with friends and family can boost your confidence and help you feel happier and more relaxed. You can also get involved in a support group, which lets you share your experiences and concerns with others who have been there too.

Your doctor – The doctor will take your medical history and perform a physical examination to find out more about your symptoms and any other signs that might suggest an underlying medical condition, like a heart disease or diabetes. They will then refer you to a mental health professional who can help you with a diagnosis and treatment options.

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