Written by Jacob I. Mirman, MD.
Anxious about Anxiety?
Anxiety comes in many forms—panic attacks, phobia, and social anxiety—and the distinction between a disorder and “normal” anxiety isn’t always clear. The telling distinction between an anxiety disorder and just having normal anxiety is whether your emotions are causing you a lot of suffering and dysfunction.
Ryan Riviera wrote a nice introductory article on anxiety for this site. It is reproduced in its entirety below. Visit Ryan’s site by clicking on the links to find some good ideas.
Treatment for Anxiety
In my experience, in addition to the necessary life style modifications discussed by Ryan, the most effective approaches to treating anxiety are amino acid supplementation according to the protocol developed by Dr. Hinz (NeuroResearch) and homeopathy. Bach Flower Essences are also useful in some cases. The choice of therapy depends on the patient’s preference and their specific situation. Both are very effective and can be used in conjunction in some cases, but should be started one at a time to be clear of the effect of each approach. Before starting a particular therapy, I like to make sure the patient understands the pros and cons of both and can make an intelligent decision.
I have treated numerous people with anxiety using NeuroResearch method and have seen very good results. Let’s discuss the pros and cons for using the NeuroResearch method and homeopathy.
NeuroResearch amino acid supplementation
- Fast: good improvement is usually seen within 4-6 weeks of starting the therapy.
- Very simple to use: the same protocol is used for everybody and the only adjustment is in the dose of the supplements.
- Predictable: most people respond well.
- Non-curative: you are better only as long as you continue to take the supplements.
- Many pills to take.
- Supplements are more expensive in the long run than successful homeopathic treatment.
- Curative: you take the remedy only as long as necessary, with the goal of permanent alleviation of symptoms and eventually stopping the remedy.
- Treats all symptoms at the same time, not just those related to the neurotransmitter imbalance.
- No large numbers of pills to take.
- Less expensive in the long run: the remedy is included at no charge, you pay only for the doctor’s time.
- Much more difficult in practice. The visits take a lot more time and effort on the part of the doctor, because the treatment is highly individualized. That is why the first visit for homeopathic treatment is much more expensive than the one for NeuroResearch treatment. Also, insurance coverage for the homeopathic visits is usually not as good as for the NeuroResearch visits.
- The effect is often quite slow. Sometimes it takes more than one try for the doctor to find the effective remedy. Until one is found, there is no effect. Once the correct remedy is found, the effect is usually slow.
Make sure to read this to gain a better understanding of the expectations for homeopathic treatment.
Some patients choose to start with the NeuroResearch approach in order get better fast, then proceed with homeopathic treatment leisurely and reduce the supplement doses if and when possible. Here’s our page to learn more about NeuroResearch amino acid supplementation.
Now for Ryan’s article:
Introduction to Anxiety and Anxiety Disorders.
by Ryan Riviera
What we now call anxiety was once an important part of the evolutionary process. Called the “fight or flight” system, anxiety was meant to warn you of potential danger. When you felt anxious you would know that there was something to fear, and you’d either run away or “fight” if needed.
Now, however, we live in a fairly safe world. There are still times when the “fight or flight” system makes sense, especially if you’re in a dangerous situation, but otherwise anxiety is less beneficial, because on any given day it’s very unlikely you’ll experience any predators or hazardous events.
The problem is that our bodies don’t know what to do with the fight or flight system any more. Instead of shutting it off, it’s become what we now know as anxiety – anxiousness or nervousness in situations that don’t warrant the emotions.
Types of Anxiety
There is more than one type of anxiety disorder. Many people suffer from “Generalized Anxiety Disorder.” This is the type of anxiety that feels present all the time, and it’s the most likely anxiety disorder to be caused by an unused fight-or-flight system. Symptoms include:
- Nervous Ticks
Anxiety shows itself in many different ways, and not everyone experiences the same symptoms. But generalized anxiety has both physical and mental symptoms, and can be either triggered by small life events or persistent throughout the day even when nothing has occurred.
There are other types of anxiety disorders as well. Some of these include:
- Panic Disorder
- Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
Unlike generalized anxiety disorder, these types of issues are more likely to have a cause or trigger. Yet all of them are mental health issues and all of them have symptoms that allow them to fall under the heading of “anxiety.”
Living with Anxiety
Severe anxiety needs to be treated, and most people that live with severe anxiety recognize that there is a problem (even if they refuse to get treatment). But many people with mild to moderate anxiety ignore it, and some don’t even realize they have it.
The problem is that anxiety is a serious issue – one that can’t simply be ignored just because you’ve established a life for yourself. The biggest problem is that anxiety creates stress, and scientists are starting to believe that stress may be the single greatest health problem facing the world. Stress damages your DNA and your organs, it hurts your ability to digest food, it weakens your immune system – stress is a very serious issue, and anxiety causes stress regularly.
In addition, anxiety affects your quality of life in ways you may not even realize. If you avoid important discussions or you refuse to socialize at parties because your anxiety is too overwhelming, it may feel as though there is no great loss, but you may be missing out on very important opportunities because your anxiety is taking control of your behaviors. If you have an anxiety problem, it is something you should address.
Anxiety Treatments and the Future of Anxiety
Treating anxiety isn’t as easy as popping a pill or seeing a therapist, although therapy is always a worthwhile consideration. Treating anxiety is about making the necessary, healthy life changes you need to improve your quality of life.
This starts by making behavioral life changes. If you surround yourself with negative people or engage in reckless activities, these need to stop. You also need to exercise and eat healthy, and perform behaviors that are better for your body’s ability to control its energy (something that will help you prevent anxiety from occurring).
You should also consider safe and natural options for dealing with anxiousness and anxiety. There are anxiety medicines if you choose to go that route, but these routinely have their own side-effects and can create personality changes that otherwise reduce the benefit of the medicine. Safer, more natural options should always be considered first, in order to support your health while you treat your anxiety.
But regardless of what methods you choose, it’s clear that relieving anxiety should be an important part of your lifestyle. If you have anxiety – including mild anxiety – you need to find healthy and effective ways to get rid of it, because the stress it causes your daily life may affect you in ways you have yet to realize.
About the Author: Ryan Rivera experienced a host of anxiety problems before finding healthier and more effective treatment options. He writes about anxiety and related health issues at calmclinic.com.