Coping With Anxiety in Addiction Recovery

It is extremely common for those who abuse alcohol and other mind and mood-altering substances to suffer from some underlying psychological disorder, and begin use initially as a way to cope with undiagnosed and untreated symptoms of said disorder. The most common co-occurring disorders amongst addicts and alcoholics are depression and anxiety. Those who suffer from anxiety will typically use alcohol and other depressants in order to calm their nerves, and sobering up can be difficult seeing as the intense discomfort of severe nervousness will come back in full and then some. Early recovery in itself is anxiety producing – couple this reality with a natural inclination towards anxiety and continuous panic attacks are more than likely. Fortunately, there are many ways to tame anxiousness and attain total relaxation without the use of drugs or alcohol. Here are several ways to overcome your anxiety naturally.

Overcome Your Anxiety Naturally

Listed below are 7 wonderful ways to kick anxiety naturally.

  1. Herbal remedies.

Chamomile, St. John’s Wort, and Valerian Root have all been proven to help relax the mind and body, reducing stress and helping to alleviate anxiety. Try taking each in supplement form, or look for a specialty tea store that offers a calming brew you can whip up before bedtime – or any time you are feeling a little panicky and overwhelmed.

  1. Eliminate caffeine and other dietary triggers.

Seeing as caffeine is a stimulant, it is not wise to down 5 cups if you are already feeling slightly nervous. Avoid coffee, energy drinks, and large amounts of refined sugars if you are attempting to avoid panic attacks. If you need a little boost of caffeine to help you make it through the day, try green tea or yerba mate. Or mix some yerba mate with chamomile tea for a calming boost of energy!

  1. Practice relaxation techniques.

Practicing yoga, meditation or simple stretches on a daily basis will help to train your body to relax and stay more in-tune with your mind, allowing for a comprehensive and thorough respite from the hustle and bustle of day-to-day life.

  1. Exercise!

Tiring yourself out physically will help you to relax mentally. Be sure to get in an average of half an hour of moderate to intense exercise daily to greatly reduce anxiety levels in the long-term.

Those who struggle with sudden bouts of anxiousness have long since employed breathing exercises. Simply breathing deeply in through the nose and out through the mouth can do wonders to calm unsettled nerves.

  1. Try to Grasp CBT Techniques.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy techniques can be extremely beneficial. One of the most valuable CBT techniques is the understanding that emotions are like waves – they are temporary, and they cannot get a firm and lasting grip on you. Emotions come and go regularly, and keeping this impermanence in mind will greatly aid in acknowledging feelings and moving on.

  1. Create a Mantra.

Coming up with your own calming and self-soothing mantra may help you to relax when you begin feeling anxious. Try saying something like “I am okay” over and over to yourself while breathing deeply in and out. If you say something enough times you will begin to believe it!

Use these techniques to help calm yourself down naturally without an unhealthy reliance on drugs or alcohol. Keep in mind that ‘this too shall pass’, and that no matter how crazy and stressful things may seem at a given moment, in as little as a week from that point, everything seemingly worrisome will be completely behind you. You are (and will continue to be) okay!

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