Published April 24, 2023
SUN Behavioral Delaware recently published an article that aims to help people stop a notable symptom of anxiety: shaking. Nearly 150,000 people in Delaware manage mental health issues, and anxiety is among those which can cause physical symptoms.
According to the center, anxiety is a built-in survival mechanism from the “caveman” days. Dangerous animals and weather used to trigger anxiety to activate a person’s fight-or-flight response. It kept people alive. Though human beings no longer need to hunt or fight to survive, anxiety remains within normal instincts.
Healthy anxiety levels vs. high anxiety levels are often tied to vulnerability to fight-or-flight response. This response readies the body for running when sensing danger, activating the sympathetic nervous system, and causing physical stress. A person should consider what symptoms are triggered by a fight-or-flight response.
Tremors, or shaking, are among the physical symptoms that people living with anxiety may experience. Fortunately, they can be managed.
Panic attacks can also cause vision problems due to dry mouth. Stress redirects energy to muscles and halts digestion, causing dry mouth in anxious moments. A racing heart happens when the brain perceives a threat, pumping blood to muscles for a flight-or-fight response, and this causes fear, anxiety, and panic to set in. Regular anxiety often causes muscle tension as well, given that the muscles are being prepared to run due to the activation of the stress response.
Adrenaline is released during fight-or-flight, causing alertness and physical effects like tremors. Sweating keeps a person cool and alert during danger, but sweaty palms may accompany anxiety due to altered breath rate. Fear makes a person breathe fast/shallow, which can make it feel like they cannot get enough air.
Anxiety tremors disrupt sleep and comfort. Untreated, fatigue and lack of focus may occur due to expended energy. Severe tremors can limit enjoyable activities and worsen anxiety.
There are ways to reduce anxiety tremors, and of course, getting treatment and medication may help. Propranolol reduces anxiety shakes, and deep breathing can also help to slow heart rate. Deep breathing calms the nervous system, slows heart rate, and increases blood flow to the brain. A simple exercise, such as inhaling for 4 seconds, holding for 4, and exhaling for 8 can provide relief. A longer outbreath (than inbreath) will relax the body and heart rate.
Similarly, sensory meditation can help regulate the nervous system. For anxiety relief, sensory meditation can ground someone and signal safety to the brain. Examples of sensory meditation include noticing space in the mouth, feeling breeze on the face, heaviness in legs, stomach rising/falling with breath, and so on.
Regular exercise also prevents anxiety tremors. Exercise releases latent energy and promotes healthy dopamine production, which can be as effective as antidepressants. In a related subject, the SUN advises that people drink enough water, as dehydration can cause tremors. Good rest can promote mental clarity and reduce racing thoughts, which are a common symptom of anxiety. It is always wise to prioritize sleep.
SUN recommends that everyone sleep for 7-8 hours per night, especially if they have anxiety. It allows the body and mind to heal and gain strength for the day ahead. Lack of sleep increases cortisol, triggering fight-or-flight.
At SUN Behavioral Health Delaware, we help patients manage stress, find and create healthy coping mechanisms, and live a life that isn’t hindered by their anxiety. To learn more about treatment for anxiety (and the tremors it can cause), contact us today at 614-706-2786.
For more information about SUN Behavioral Delaware, contact the company here:
SUN Behavioral Delaware
21655 Biden Ave
Georgetown, DE 19947
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