How Can Ayurveda Reduce Anxiety?

Nowadays, anxiety is a burning problem due to a changed lifestyle. This changed lifestyle affects the body as well as the mind. Due to this changed lifestyle pattern, competition in the outer world, jealousy, greed etc. are the negativities Increasing which are affecting people all over the world.

Anxiety Disorder,Reduce Anxiety,
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Anxiety disorders are spreading worldwide and it is the most common mental disorder. It affects people of all age groups and is often accompanied by the stress, which is the body’s physiologic response to mental or physical stress as the long-term stress results in the decline of overall health.

The most common types of anxiety include:

  1. Generalized anxiety disorder is commonly known as GAD.
  2. Panic Disorder
  3. Social Anxiety Disorder or Social Phobia
  4. Agoraphobia
  5. Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
  6. Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

1. Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD):

Generalized Anxiety Disorder involves excessive or persistent anxiety about routine activities in daily life.

  • This type of anxiety occurs along with other anxiety disorders or depression.

2. Panic Disorder:

Panic disorder involves sudden feelings of fear or terror that reach a peak within minutes.

  • Some of the symptoms of panic disorder are shortness of breath, impending doom, chest pain, heart palpitations etc.
  • These panic attacks lead individuals to worry about them if happening again and again or avoiding certain conditions in which panic attacks occurred.

3. Social Anxiety Disorder:

This condition involves high levels of anxiety and fear and avoidance of social situations due to lack of confidence, feelings of embarrassment, and self-consciousness about being judged or viewed negatively by others.

4. Agoraphobia:

It is a type of anxiety disorder that involves fear and avoiding certain places or situations that may lead to panic which makes the person to feel helpless or embarrassed. The body normally reacts differently depending on the intensity of the anxiety.

5. Post-traumatic Stress Disorder:

This type of anxiety disorder occurs in those individuals who have experienced a shocking, scary or a dangerous event in their life.

  • The fight or flight response is a normal reaction by the body which is intended to protect the body from harm.
  • People suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder may feel stressed or frightened even when they are not in any danger.

6. Obsessive Compulsive Disorder:

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder is a type of anxiety that is chronic and long lasting disorder in which an individual has reoccurring and uncontrollable thoughts and behaviors that he or she feels to repeat over and over.

Different types of anxiety disorder exhibits different symptoms but there are some general symptoms of anxiety. These are:

  • Feeling of fear, panic, and uneasiness
  • Heart palpitations
  • Shortness of breath
  • Dry mouth
  • Nausea
  • Dizziness
  • Weakness
  • Difficulty in sleeping

Acute Anxiety

Acute Anxiety is considered as short-term anxiety which is commonly experienced during a stressful event and once the stress factor has been removed, person falls back to the normal state.

Chronic Anxiety

Chronic Anxiety is a more dangerous reaction to stress as it has long term effects. This requires time, attention and focus to help to treat this type of anxiety.

What are the hormones that play a role in anxiety?

  • Hormones such as dopamine play a role in developing anxiety.
  • Another hormone responsible for anxiety is serotonin.

How Anxiety Disorders are diagnosed?

Anxiety is diagnosed by taking medical history and by performing physical examination. The symptoms of anxiety mimic the symptoms of heart disorders such as heart attack.

What is the Ayurvedic perspective on Anxiety?

Ayurveda also emphasizes on the food habits that play a significant role in the origin of anxiety.According to Ayurveda, Vata aggravation is marked by anxiety, Pitta aggravation is marked by anger and Kapha aggravation is marked by depression. So, Ayurveda focuses on balancing Vata dosha for the treatment of anxiety.

Some of the remedies for Anxiety are:

1. Oiling:

The nature of Vata dosha is dry. Therefore, oiling helps in providing relief to the patients suffering from anxiety.

  • Oil forms a protective sheath around the body that forms a protective sheath around the body that helps in buffering the nervous system and the mind against undue anxiety and stress.

How to use: Take sesame oil and apply on the feet and put pressure on the center under the ball of the toes.

  • Massaging on the top of the head or the forehead and temples also relaxes the mind.

2. Pranayama:

Pranayama helps in rejuvenating the nervous system by supplying enough oxygen to the brain and by enhancing the blood circulation.

  • According to Ayurveda, disturbances in prana vayu are usually related to the emergence of fear and anxiety. Therefore, the practice of specific pranayama can be quite potent in calming anxiety.

3. Yoga:

Yoga impacts the mind in a positive way as it improves prana in the body, helps in reducing tension and encourages fluidity throughout the tissues in the body as well as in the subtle mind.

  • Vata pacifying yoga such as Shavasana is recommended as it helps in clearing the accumulated Vata from mano vaha srotas.
  • Other yoga exercises such as forward bending, child pose are very helpful in anxiety as these yoga poses help in pacifying Vata dosha.

4. Meditation:

Meditation helps a lot in treating anxiety as the root cause of anxiety or panic attacks is stressful mind, negativity, unknown fear, depression etc.

  • Meditation for half to one hour regularly helps in keeping all the negativities of mind at bay and is considered best for anxiety disorders.

5. Nasya:

Nasya is a therapy which soothes the delicate tissues of the nose, unobstructed breathing, relieves stress and promotes mental clarity.

  • This therapy also helps in pacifying Vata dosha in the manovaha srotas and has a calming effect on the mind and nervous system.

How herbs are useful in treating anxiety?

The Ayurveda practice includes the administration of herbs for all types of anxiety. Herbs such as Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera), Brahmi (Bacopa monnieri), Mandukparni (Centella asiatica), Jatamansi (Nardostachys jatamansi), Bala (Sida cordifolia), Yashtimadhu (Glycrrhiza glabra), Draksha (raisins), Chandana (Sandalwood) etc. are very beneficial in the treatment of anxiety.