In yesterday’s post, we talked a bit about the dangers of anxiety and its effect on body and mind. That, in turn, can have quite a negative impact on the quality of life. If you’re anxious frequently, or even worse, suffer from anxiety attacks, it can quickly spiral out of control to the point where your quality of life is severely impacted.
Anxiety puts your body on high alert. You feel like you’re facing danger, and as a result, your heart rate goes up, your palms get sweaty, and you start to get stressed out. While this can be a good thing from time to time, for example, when it motivates you to prep for a test or an interview, it can also be unpleasant. Most importantly, for most of us suffering from anxiety, it will be completely useless. People tend to get anxious about things entirely out of their control. In those cases, there’s no benefit to the anxiety, stress, and putting your body on high alert.
All it does is make you feel terrible and cause you to lose sleep. Speaking of which, loss of sleep or insomnia is one of the adverse effects of anxiety. Lack of sleep doesn’t make for a good day, and it will negatively impact your performance for the day. Long term bouts of insomnia will also take their toll on your body.
Anxiety is a state of stress and duress. During times of stress, our body releases a hormone called Cortisol, which has been linked to weight gain. Add to it that many people grab for comfort foods, chocolate, or salty snacks when they feel stressed, and anxiety can lead to quite a bit of weight gain. Combined with the added stress and lack of sleep, it adds to a risk of heart disease. Therefore, anxiety can be physically debilitating.
While it takes some time for the physical debilitation to manifest itself, the mental effects of anxiety are immediate. With severe anxiety, it can be hard to function in everyday life. You continuously seem stressed out and fearful. As anxiety starts to spiral out of control, you may develop coping mechanisms like avoiding stressful situations and people. You may no longer be able to go grocery shopping except during off-hours, for example. Some people are no longer able to leave the house at all because of severe anxiety issues. I’m sure you’ll agree that this is quite debilitating.
For many, high anxiety morphs into depression. It gets hard to find the energy to get out of bed in the morning and face life. Being on high alert and pumped full of adrenalin is exhausting. Staying in bed seems like a much better alternative. If you find your anxiety, starting to impact your life negatively, please seek professional help. While anxiety can be debilitating, there is help out there and various tools that help you return to a healthy life.