Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Causes of Anxiety Attacks by Michael Logan

Experiencing anxiety attacks causes even more anxiety. Did you know that? It's because there's so much misunderstanding in society and even among some doctors about what exactly anxiety is and isn't.

Feeling anxiety doesn't mean you're not normal. When you reach a point where anxiety impacts your life so much that you can't do everyday things, that still doesn't mean you're not normal. What it means is that your anxiety has reached a level where you need to do something about it. It means that to get back into the routine of life, you're going to need a little help.

Many people don't seek help when they feel overwhelmed by this emotion because of the stigma that is wrongly associated with it. Sometimes what people don't understand, they fear. Back in the 1800s epilepsy was given a label that wasn't accurate and the same thing happens today when you have people and doctors who aren't aware how to handle anxiety.

There's a simple definition for anxiety. Boiled down to the basic meaning, anxiety stands for worry. People with anxiety worry just like others. The problem is they worry more than they should and can't seem to stop, so help is needed. Some people with anxiety do have mental issues, but that doesn't mean everyone who struggles with anxiety does.

Getting to the root of anxiety attacks causes can be found in how people react. It's an overreaction - an emotional overload that triggers the anxiety. Anxiety triggers can be from physical danger such as having been in an accident, financial pressure, marriage struggles or the loss of someone close to you - whether through death or separation.

Usually when people experience such happenings in life, they're able to deal with them, put them in the proper perspective and move on. Those who suffer from a deep anxiety that won't leave them alone can't seem to move past some events.

Wanting to and not being able to control life can bring an attack. Living with the fear of 'what if' or 'what could happen' can cause anxiety to build. Part of anxiety can be found with fear at the foundation. Fear is the worry over something that hasn't happened. We fear job loss, death, how to pay bills, we fear health problems and the list goes on. But whether the fear is real or not, to those who battle anxiety, the fear is very real.

Experiencing anxiety attacks causes people's lives to be disrupted sometimes to the point where they can't make it through an hour, let alone an entire day. For those people, learning how to control what they can control and let of what they can't is vital for gaining perspective. You don't have to put up with anxiety. There are ways to successfully treat it.

And Those Ways Are...?

The tool which I recommend most highly for managing feelings like anxiety is the heart rate variability biofeedback tool.

I had a client this past Friday struggling with anxiety about multiple psychological and medical issues, who sat down at the computer, and I hooked her up to her ear clip, and she followed the directions of the Coach included in the program, who instructed her on breathing and the Quick Coherence technique, and she was visibly relieved at the end of her 20 minutes session, reporting feeling very relaxed.

I was doing the biofeedback right along with her, as I was a bit worried about whether the technology would impact her anxiety.

Not a problem, she is now anxious to continue, which is eustress anxiety rather than a distress anxiety.

A most excellent aspect of heart rate variability biofeedback is that it is learned. I have had only a handful of clients in the ten years I have used heart rate variability biofeedback take more than five hours or ten sessions to learn how to induce the heart rate variability coherence by cue thought and breathing pattern.

Actually, there is a very sophisticated nervous system in your heart which is learning to respond to the breathing and thinking cues, and believe me, your heart will thank you for helping it beat more coherently. In fact, you will feel great while using the tool, so you will want to remind yourself of it frequently.

Another aspect of the heart rate variability biofeedback solution is that I can make one heart beat an anxious heart beat and the next a relaxed heart beat. My clients begin to realize that they can schedule anxiety and relaxation, alternating them, and within a usually brief period of time, anxiety is minimized in order to feel relaxed, which does not mean that problems in the external world go away.

It does mean that we "worry them" when we want to work on a creative solution, and the heart rate variability biofeedback process opens the higher perceptual centers in the brain for that creative problem solving.

So it looks like heart rate variability biofeedback is a winner all the way around, good for the brain and body.

It definitely combines the best in available psychophysiological tools.