From the Blog
Natural Remedies for Anxiety
Anxiety, overwhelm, stress and worry seem to be common concerns these days. Big life events, trauma, hormone and gut issues and even nutritional deficiencies can all contribute to us experiencing feelings of anxiousness. There are many natural remedies to try that may help ease the symptoms of anxiety.
What is anxiety?
Anxiety is a multi-system response to a perceived threat or danger. Everyone feels anxious from time to time, especially when we feel under pressure or something happens to disrupt our calm. When the anxious feelings don't go away or make it hard to cope with daily life it may be the sign of a more serious anxiety condition.
“Anxiety is the most common mental health condition in Australia. On average, one in four people – one in three women and one in ﬁve men – will experience anxiety at some stage in their life. In a 12-month period, over two million Australians experience anxiety.” Beyond Blue
What are the symptoms of anxiety?
According to naturopath, Jessica Donovan, the symptoms can vary, but some of the most common include:
- * Racing heartbeat
- * Palpitations
- * Sweating
- * Breathlessness
- * Dizziness
- * Excess worrying
- * Feelings of apprehension
- * Feeling fatigued or weak
- * Dry mouth
- * Digestive disturbances like diarrhoea
- * Disturbed sleep
- * Difficulty relaxing
Natural remedies can play their part in alleviating mild anxiety symptoms. However, you should always consult your medical practitioner. This advice is general in nature and should not be taken as medical advice.
Flower Essences for Anxiety
Flower essences work on supporting the emotions and may be useful for easing anxious symptoms. These three blends may help.
Calm your Farm can be used when you feel overwhelmed or there is a feeling of disharmony and upset in chaotic environments.
Shake It Off may help with anticipatory anxiety and when worried, nervous and fearing new situations.
Confidence Charge can help with low level worry, nervousness and needing a little push to give things a go and to back oneself.
Homeopathy for Anxiety
Owens Homeopathics have several remedies that may help with anxiety, depending on the presentation.
Anticipatory Anxiety Complex is a combination that can assist the body in times of stress.
Argent Nit has traditionally been used for the symptomatic relief of anxiety, apprehension, fear or fright. The presentation may be nervous, excitable, talkative, impulsive and craving sweets.
Gelsemium may be helpful for symptoms related to anticipatory anxiety, fear, stage fright and exam nerves.
Aconite. This remedy has traditionally been used for symptoms associated with sudden anxiety, agitation and restlessness and intense fear or dread of things like aeroplanes, earthquakes, crowds and bad news.
Kali Phos. This tissue salt is a nerve tonic. It’s good for nervous types or those who burn up a lot of nervous energy and overwork themselves.
You can read some more about homeopathy for anxiety here.
Other natural remedies for anxiety
- * Check in with your medical practitioner to rule out nutritional deficiencies. Magnesium, vitamin B12, and zinc deficiency may present as anxiety.
- * Magnesium is an essential mineral that gets used up quickly when we are stressed. As well as adding more magnesium rich foods to your diet and perhaps a supplement, regular magnesium baths can soothe and relax.
- * Use epsom salts (magnesium sulphate) or magnesium chloride flakes. You may like to add some essential oils known for their relaxing properties, like bergamot, lavender, clary sage, grapefruit and ylang ylang.
- * Two aromatherapy blends you might find helpful are Eco Essentials’ Anxiety Oil Blend and Aromatics for Wellbeing’s Fearless Blend.
- * Herbal teas like chamomile can be helpful for worry and stress. Botany Culture has some recipes for blending herbal teas to help with anxiety.
* A visit to the naturopath or herbalist could help with liquid herbs like lemon balm, oat straw, valerian and passionflower. Naturopaths can also help you get to the root cause of your anxiety and check for nutrient, hormone and gut issues.
- * Mindful activities like meditation, qi gong, tai chi, walking, breathwork and gentle exercise can all help ground and soothe your nervous system.
* When it comes to what to avoid, caffeine, alcohol, smoking, additives and sugar may all worsen anxiety. Make sure you are prioritising sleep, getting rest and eating a nutrient dense diet as well.
Zen Meditation for Anxiety
This is a great technique I learnt as part of my meditation qualifications. It can be useful for when you are overthinking and anxious. A dose of Calm Your Farm before you start can be helpful as well. It is basically all about focusing on your five senses, one at a time.
- Close your eyes, take a few deep breaths.
- Focus on your hearing - what can you hear - notice every little sound and if it changes, etc.
- After a few breaths, move to the next sense - smell.
- What can you smell? Do you like it? Is it a strong smell?
- After a few breaths, move to the next sense - vision.
- With eyes closed, look into the darkness. Look high, look low.
- Then taste, and then touch - focus on the blankets, sheets, skin touching skin, breeze on your skin, etc.
This technique can be done in the shower, while walking, while waiting in the car for the kids to finish school/sport. It’s so versatile and it really helps to calm and ground the nervous system.
I hope these natural remedies for anxiety have given you some ideas to try for when you are feeling stressed and overwhelmed. Don’t forget to seek expert help if your anxiety worsens or you are at all concerned.
Please get in touch if you would like some further assistance in deciding on remedies. I am always happy to make you up a personalised essence to directly address your symptoms and presentation.
What has helped you with anxiety? I would love to know what has worked for you and your family.
Australian Bushflower Essences
Naturopath, Jessica Donovan