Each of us is probably familiar with disturbing sensations. They usually include emotions, thoughts, and physical body reactions. There are more than a hundred specific manifestations of anxiety, and some of them, at first glance, have nothing to do with it at all . This is because anxiety as such is much broader and deeper than feeling alone. Anxiety causes a lot of changes throughout the body and in the psyche, some of which cascade each other, all this interferes with timely recovery , etc. You can imagine how much more difficult life is if anxiety goes beyond normal and becomes constant, excessive, all-consuming ?
Too many thoughts, jumping from one thought to another, mental gum, looping, inability to control the flow of thought, obsessive thoughts, thoughts of something bad, irrational thoughts, frightening and strange thoughts, recurring thoughts, unwanted thoughts. This is just a short list. All this floods your poor head, interferes with concentration, creates a feeling of “empty head” when you need to do something, drains you, wastes your energy and causes many, many other reactions – both emotional and bodily. This leads to avoidant behavior because you are willing to literally do anything to stop it. In many people with anxiety have only this group of symptoms, and nothing else.
Anxiety itself is of an emotional nature. Therefore, all signs of anxiety can be considered a manifestation of this emotion. But there are other emotions that can arise in connection with anxiety, or even be caused by it: anger, irritation, sadness and a special state that is described as “on the verge of tears.” Also, anxiety can lead to the opposite effect – a feeling of insensibility, emotional anesthesia.
Physical, bodily symptoms
There are quite a few of them, there are typical, that is, associated with anxiety in most people, and there are specific ones. Typical physical symptoms include hand tremors (tremors), sweating, palpitations, indigestion such as diarrhea or nausea, and vomiting. It also includes a variety of pains: in the chest, abdomen, joints and muscles, in the back, in the limbs. Often added are: a feeling of pressure in the head, a feeling of a lump in the throat and difficulty swallowing, a feeling of suffocation, a feeling of physical fatigue, muscle spasms and tension , etc. In the same way as in the case of the first group of manifestations, many people have only physical symptoms, and nothing else. No thoughts, no emotional feelings. Some researchers believe that the body begins to respond when anxiety cannot be processed emotionally, but this hypothesis is difficult to scientifically confirm.
For a typical physical symptoms of anxiety and related increased risk of developing various diseases. The relationship between increased anxiety and cardiovascular problems, diabetes, and disorders of fat metabolism has been proven. For example, high levels of cholesterol , triglycerides, and glucose are associated with high levels of anxiety . It is not yet completely clear what exactly lies at the basis of this relationship, “who stands on whom .” The researchers suggest that chronic anxiety, and when these diseases occur similar biological changes in the brain and body as a whole, because there, and there are involved stress hormones, automatic answer “hit – Freeze – run” neyroimmunitet and overall reactivity …
Anxiety is associated with chronic stress. It is stressful in itself, because it is unpredictable, unresolved, uncontrollable. Each anxiety attack literally throws you up through the activation of stress systems, hormones and the heart, which leads to a constant state of readiness. As I already mentioned, our body is able to cope with periodic hazards, but it is not designed purely biologically for constant stress . Because of this, excessive anxiety causes many cascading reactions, which at first glance lie far from the anxiety itself: impaired absorption of food and deficiency of vitamins and trace elements (being in a state of stress impairs intestinal absorption); tension headaches (due to involuntary muscle spasms of the face, neck , etc.); extreme sensitivity of all senses and their increased sensitivity to discomfort (you literally turn into a princess and a pea); chronic fatigue , etc.
The last important point in this topic: anxiety has a level that can be considered optimal for the current situation, and there is a level that is already excessive. It is important to distinguish between them . In a crisis situation, it is normal to have an increased level of anxiety . I do not know to what extent it is normal, but in a crisis you can definitely be more anxious than usual, because there is a lot of uncertainty around you, a lot of unknown and stressful . There is such a term “optimal level of anxiety” – which means that it is not so low that we are too relaxed , but also not so high that anxiety turns into trauma, frustration and chronic stress. It is normal for us to be more anxious than usual in a crisis . It will be like this for a while, and there is no need to try to knock all your anxiety down to zero. In the same way as the high temperature during infection must be knocked down from a certain mark on the thermometer (usually 38.5). The task of fever in illness is to provide an adequate immune response to infection. The psychic system works in the same way during anxiety. Therefore, your main task here is to determine your optimal level of anxiety for this particular crisis and specific situations. Having determined this optimal level, you will immediately understand from what level of anxiety you need to do something with it, since it has become excessive and harmful to you.