Each and every one of us faces certain levels of stress and anxiety in their day to day life. Now there are countless treatments, groups, medication, techniques developed in order to guide us on how to overcome nervousness and anxiety. Yet, in this article. I want to touch on less known adjuvants that are available today.
Mother Nature’s Calming Garden
The Kava plants contains kavalactones which have been intensely studied and have shown to have anxiolytic properties. Depending on the administrating method, kava can act as a anticonvulsant, analgesic, sedative and even local anesthetic.
Studies have shown kava regimens to be very effective in treating various types of anxiety, from mild to severe and anxiety associated with end of life (terminal cancer). The plant is safe to administer, as long as it is taken as prescribed.
The recommended dose is of 50 to 70 mg kavalactones preparation, to be taken 3 times a day. The treatment should not exceed 24 weeks, as long-term usage has not shown to bring any added benefits.
As with all active plant ingredients, side effects can occur, but have been observed in less than 5% of people that have been treated with kavalactone preparations.
Possible side effects include :
- morning fatigue
- skin rash
- slowed reflexes
- problems focusing
- mild upset stomach
Kava should not be used in combination with other drugs such as : hypnotics, sedatives, anxiolytics, MAO inhibitors. Before considering starting a treatment with this plant, ask your doctor about all the details and see if it is right for you.
Another plant that has been used for its calming effects since the dark ages is Passion Flower. The herb is well known for its anti-anxiety effects, studies have identified maltol and ethymaltol to be the culprits responsible for the herb’s properties. At normal doses, these compounds show a
At normal doses, these compounds show a sedation effect at the central nervous system level, and in very high doses exhibit anticonvulsant activity.
A study looked to research the Passion Flower’s potential for treating Generalized Anxiety Disorder, by comparing its success rate to that of Oxazepam – a prescription medication for treating anxiety.
The herb took longer to manifest its effects, yet aside from aside from being just as effective as the prescription drug , it had none of the side-effects associated with Oxazepam.
When taken as recommended, there have been little-reported side-effects associated with Passion Flower consumption. The recommended dose is 200 to 300 mg of extract, to be administered twice a day.
Possible side-effects include:
- increased heart rate
- upset stomach (mild)
It is also important to note that Passion Flower can interfere with other drugs and should not be taken with sedatives, anxiolytics or MAO inhibitors. Mother nature’s beautiful flowers show us how to overcome nervousness and anxiety.
Another plant that can guide us to how to overcome nervousness and anxiety is Valerian. This herb contains valerenal and valerenic acid. These compounds have been shown to possess sedative effects, anticonvulsant and muscle relaxing properties.
Possible side-effects include :
- fast heart rate
- antagonistical effects.
A small number of people experience antagonistical effects when taking Valerian. Instead of feeling calm and relaxed, the feel agitated and awake.
It is also important to note that Valerian can interfere with other drugs and should not be taken with pentobarbitone, barbiturates, benzodiazepines and alcohol.
Calming Herbal Tea
To aid in controlling anxiety symptoms, nature comes to our aid through a number of different plants that have traditionally been used for their mild sedative and calming effects. These include: Skullcap, Hops, Chamomile, Motherwort, and Oat straw.
These plants can be taken in large amounts, and can be administered in a pill form as supplements, or as a tea. To obtain enhanced effects, it is advised to combine 2 or 3 plants in making one tea.
More information on alternative medication on how to overcome nervousness and anxiety can be accessed here.
Brain Stimulation Therapy
From the wonders of nature, we move on to the genius of human mind. Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (short term rTMS) has been enlisted to offer us another option how to overcome nervousness and anxiety, let me add, it has been showing promising results.
Now, rTMS is a type of brain stimulation therapy, it utilizes magnetic pulses to active specific areas of the brain. The technique was developed back in 1985 and has been used for treating patients suffering of depression that did not respond to any other for of treatment.
Recently, researchers have been studying its possible usage for treating anxiety. One study recruited 24 participants suffering from Generalized Anxiety Disorder; 12 were assigned to receive rTMS treatment on the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, while the other 12 were treated with a face procedure.
The participants underwent 5 treatments per week, each lasting 15 minutes. They received a total of 900 magnetic pulses and 1Hz per session. The treatment lasted 6 weeks.
The results showed that rTMS treatment was immensely superior to the sham technique. 70% of the patients who completed the treatment had a significant improvement in their condition compared to the “placebo group”.
Even more impressive, those in the rTMS group continued to improve their condition over the next 3 months following the treatment.
Side effects of the treatment are transient and generally disappear over the course of the treatment. These include headaches, nausea, vision problems, seizures and a sense of discomfort at the administration site.
As with all brain stimulation techniques, children, pregnant women, those with epilepsy and the elderly might not be eligible candidates for this treatment. If you would like more information on the study you can access it here.
Improv teaches us How to overcome Nervousness and Anxiety
Now I know improv classes are associated with being outgoing and theatrical, but one man saw its potential for helping individuals that suffer from anxiety. Mark Pfeffer is a CBT therapist and the director of the Panic/Anxiety Recovery Center in Chicago.
Mark Pffefer teamed up with Second City instructors and founded a 8-week program designed to help their participants overcome fear of social situations and avoidance.
During these classes, the goal is to slowly build up confidence while allowing the individual’s personality to take hold and manifest.
The improv classes work by starting with the premise that you are in a safe environment, one of acceptance and equality. It is an area where every action is the right action. From this point on, the therapists work towards exposing participants to outgoing activities that would make most people uncomfortable.
Activities include games such as throwing an imaginary red ball to each other while yelling “red ball”, holding a eulogy at an imaginary funeral etc.
An interesting game was for one volunteer to stay still, like a statue, in the middle of the group. The person cannot leave until another participant joins in to become “the statue”. After each game, the participants talk about how the felt during the exercise.
Now while there is little to no scientific research that demonstrates the effectiveness of improvisations in treating social anxiety; Pffefer and his program boast to have helped over 200 people to date. Many mental health professionals attend his improv classes in order to observe the effects and learn more about the technique involved.
It is a revolutionary approach to social anxiety that allows people to find the strength within themselves and pave their own path on how to overcome nervousness and anxiety. If you would like to know more about Improv classes for Anxiety, more information is available here.
Pivotal Tips on How to overcome Nervousness and Anxiety
Let us touch on how to overcome nervousness and anxiety by taking matters into your own hands. Within each and everyone one of us lies the power and will to overcome every obstacle.
I enlisted the help of a prominent Youtuber, Clark Danger, to bring you the tips that work for him in combating anxiety. The advice is sound and even my science obsessed brain had to agree that it is information worth taking note of.
Clark creates youtube videos designed to aid people in a plethora of fields, all revolving around having a healthy and active lifestyle.
Focus on self development, motivation, inspiration,
authenticity, traveling, journaling. Stop settling, start living!
If you would like to see more of Clark’s thought-provoking videos, you can access them here.
The methods may vary, but there will always be an answer available for everyone on how to overcome nervousness and anxiety. The first step is starting with something, and although it is the hardest – it is also the most satisfying step.
If you would like more details on the subject or if you have any questions, objections, hateful comments or highly deserved praises to offer please do not hesitate to leave a comment.
Also, if you have a product that you would like me to review and research, I gladly welcome the challenge.
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