Anxiety is a common disorder and its symptoms can be mild or more important: here are all the natural remedies to combat it
- What's this
- Natural remedies
- Essential oils
- Other effective remedies
Anxiety is a very common disorder, affecting about 15% of the population of industrialized countries. In general, anxiety can be described as a behavioral response to new or perceived events as unpleasant or dangerous, but in people with anxiety disorders, this occurs in the absence of an actual threat.
The causes of anxiety can be various: at the basis of anxiety disorders there is a genetic predisposition and the involvement of psychosocial factors.
Anxiety disorders can appear at any age, depending on the type of disorder. Phobic anxiety normally manifests itself already in childhood and adolescence, while generalized anxiety disorders can also appear in adulthood and in the elderly.
From a physiological point of view, anxiety depends on an imbalance between the excitatory and inhibitory neuronal transmission pathways and, in particular, on a decrease in control over the inhibitory pathway mediated by GABA (γ-aminobutyric acid).
Predisposed people can suffer from anxiety before having to take an exam or a job interview, an important appointment or a major life change. In other cases, anxiety can manifest itself following an adverse event: after a car accident, you can suffer from anxiety at the thought of driving again.
In these cases, anxiety manifests itself with acute symptoms but of low or moderate entity, before an event perceived as dangerous. Symptoms include an increase in heartbeat and sweating, often accompanied by poor salivation, a sense of agitation and spasms in the stomach and intestines. Normally, these disorders go away when the situation is faced and overcome.
On the other hand, those suffering from generalized anxiety can manifest a series of symptoms without there being an actual and immediate threat. In fact, anxiety can lead to insomnia, a decrease in mood, digestive problems, a tendency to complain often and focus on negative thoughts.
People affected by anxiety can therefore present important symptoms, which can have significant repercussions in everyday life.
Nature provides several remedies to treat anxiety and symptoms related to this disorder, all easily available in herbal medicine. Among the most effective plants against anxiety we find passionflower, linden, hawthorn and lemon balm, remedies capable of calming the states of agitation and palpitations related to anxiety.
Often the anxiety that one feels before an important event is accompanied by gastrointestinal disorders, such as nausea and intestinal colic: in this case an important help comes from chamomile, thanks to its spasmolytic action.
When anxiety is accompanied by insomnia, in addition to these plants, it is also possible to resort to valerian and hops, two useful remedies to promote sleep.
To support the mood in generalized anxiety disorders, it is possible to use preparations based on eleutherococcus, rhodiola and saffron.
These remedies are available in the form of raw drug to be taken as an infusion, even by mixing multiple plants together. Liquid or dry extracts, such as mother tinctures, tablets and capsules, are also commercially available.
Essential oils are natural substances produced by plants for a variety of purposes, including defense against predators and parasites and communication. Natural essences are complex and volatile mixtures, extracted from leaves, fruits, bark and other parts of plants, through squeezing, a current of steam or thanks to the use of solvents. Essential oils have numerous effects on our health and act, among other things, as stimulants or relaxants of the central nervous system.
Among the most useful essential oils in case of anxiety, therefore with a relaxing effect, we find the essential oil of lavender, lemon balm and chamomile. These essences can be used alone or in synergy with each other to make baths and foot baths, massages or inhalations.
In the bath and for foot baths, it is sufficient to disperse about five drops of essential oil in a spoonful of bubble bath to then add to the water in the tub. As for massages, three to five drops of essence are used in a spoonful of vegetable oil, such as sweet almond, olive or sunflower oil. The massage oil can be applied to the wrists and behind the ears before an exam, an interview or other event that triggers anxiety and agitation. Alternatively, the massage can be performed on the whole body before going to sleep to promote rest in the event that anxiety causes insomnia.
Inhaling relaxing essential oils can be done by pouring three drops of essence onto a handkerchief or pillow before going to bed. The relaxing power of essential oils can also be exploited by diffusing the essences into the environment, pouring five to ten drops into the burner or electric diffuser.
Other effective remedies
Symptoms related to anxiety can be alleviated by numerous natural remedies but also thanks to proper nutrition and a healthy lifestyle.
In fact, a healthy and balanced diet promotes the functionality of the whole body and can contribute to physical and mental well-being by improving sleep, digestion and concentration, often compromised by anxiety and agitation.
In case of anxiety, it is also important to carry out regular physical exercise which increases the production of endorphins and neurotransmitters involved in the regulation of mood and behavior.
Finally, people suffering from anxiety can benefit from meditation and breathing exercises, which can improve the ability to control their thoughts and regulate the heartbeat.