Uncertainty. Fear. Misunderstanding. These are the three sensations that most anxiety sufferers experience but have not yet received a definitive diagnosis. Unlike physical disorders, it is not always easy to explain how anxiety is perceived, a disorder in which physical, emotional and cognitive symptoms converge that can turn into an ordeal. Indeed, once the symptoms of anxiety are identified, for many people the diagnosis becomes even liberating, because they finally find an explanation for what happens to them and, of course, they can look for a solution.
Anxiety is not a monolithic entity, which means that it can present itself in a number of ways. There will be those who suffer most from its psychological effects and those who somatize it. In any case, knowing the first symptoms of anxiety will help you recognize it quickly and stop its advance.
Symptoms of anxiety that often go unnoticed
1. Cold feet. Yes, cold feet aren't just annoying, they can also be one of the first symptoms of anxiety. When you are anxious, your brain assumes that you are in danger and redirects blood flow to the main organs of the body which are located in the torso. As a result, less blood will flow to the extremities. This ancestral fight or flight response is meant to ensure your survival. Unfortunately, this mechanism is activated indiscriminately, whether in the face of real danger, such as the attack of a grizzly bear, or if you are anxious because you are late for the meeting.
2. Frequent yawning. Yawning is not only an indicator of sleep or boredom, it can also be a sign of anxiety. In fact, in recent years the theory has taken shape that yawning serves to expand and compress the walls of the maxillary sinus to pump air to the brain and decrease its temperature. It has also been seen that nervous people and those suffering from panic attacks or generalized anxiety yawn more often. In fact, a study conducted at Bournemouth University found a connection between the frequency of yawning and the increase in the stress hormone cortisol in the blood. The curious fact is that cortisol also increases the temperature of the body and brain. And that's exactly why you yawn more when you're feeling anxious.
3. Recurring nightmares. If you frequently have recurring nightmares, it's likely a symptom of anxiety, frustration, and / or worry. This was the conclusion reached by a group of psychologists from Cardiff University, who explain that occasional nightmares are an attempt to make sense of the day's experiences, while recurring nightmares are the result of negative emotions derived from a profound feeling of lack of control over our lives and the idea that we are unable to cope with problems.
4. Mental fog. If you're having trouble concentrating lately, it could be due to anxiety. It is not simply that worries prevent you from focusing attention because your mind is trapped in a whirlwind of ideas, but you can experience a kind of "mental fog", also known as fibro-fog. You can perceive it as the inability to understand reality and think clearly. As a result, you will likely start having memory problems. It will be difficult for you to remember even what you have just read.
5. Metallic taste in the mouth. Anxiety often causes a metallic taste in the mouth, which can become very unpleasant. There are several explanations. The most likely is that the stress is causing a bacterial reaction in the mouth that causes the gums to bleed. The blood has a metallic taste, and this is what you are noticing, even if the amount is so small that you cannot see it. Added to this is that during times of anxiety one becomes more sensitive to certain flavors. In fact, an experiment conducted at the University of Bristol confirmed that anxiety increases the perception of bitter and salty flavors.
Deal with anxiety before it defeats you
Is it important to ask for help as soon as possible if you have anxiety? Surely. Several studies have shown that the sooner help is sought, the faster the anxiety can be overcome and, above all, the results will be more lasting over time.
The sooner the vicious circle that generates anxiety breaks, the better it will be. Over time, your brain is memorizing the anxiety response, so it will be harder to break the pattern.
Can Anxiety Become Resistant? No doubt! A study conducted at UCLA revealed that about 60% of patients do not respond well to conventional anxiety treatment and continue to have bothersome symptoms that affect their quality of life, thus developing what is known as resistant anxiety, the which is caused, among other factors, by waiting too long before seeking help.
Do you want to eliminate anxiety at its root? This book about how to cure anxiety will not only allow you to understand its mechanisms, but also to learn practical techniques that will help you relax and defeat anxiety once and for all.