MANAGING ANXIETY WITH BIOFEEDBACK
Worrying is natural. Anxiety is a normal and health emotion. In some situations, anxiety can be beneficial. Such as a big dance recital, sports event, going to a job interview or giving a speech may cause most people to feel fearful and nervous, resulting in a good result as we practice more and more in anxiety. But however some of us are very overwhelmed by worrying on a daily basis.
Those who have experience of stress and anxiety is gripping them. The feeling of anxiety creates stress and worried, and this process of thoughts does not have an immediate “off” switch. The good news is there is simple, non-drug treatment for the management of anxiety and its BIOFEEDBACK.
Biofeedback is a technique or a therapy helps to learn control on some of your body functions such as heart rate, muscle tension, blood flow, pain perception, high blood pressure, tension headache, migraine headache, chronic pain and urinary incontinence.
During biofeedback, you’re connected to electrical sensors that help you to receive the information about your body. This feedback helps in making subtle changes in your body such as relaxing certain muscles to achieve the results you want such as reducing pain. In general, biofeedback increases the ability to practice new ways to control your body mostly to improve health condition and physical performance.
The most common types of anxiety disorders are:
- Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD).
- Panic disorder.
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PSTD).
- Chronic pain.
- Society anxiety disorder (SAD).
- Specific phobias.
- Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD).
- Chemotherapy side effects.
- Attention-deficits or hyperactivity disorders (ADHD).
- Fecal or urinary incontinence.
- High blood pressure.
There is a common thread which makes anxiety disorder unique. The loop of anxiety follows:
- Worried thoughts.
- Physiological response.
- More worried thoughts.
- Heightened response.
Anxiety is also due to environmental causes, personal experiences and genetics. A common trait among those who have anxiety disorder is the person’s need for control. Anxiety triggers when a desire to control a situation out of its reach. The individual is always aware of this threat which he perceived and it’s irrational. Person with anxiety feels like he is upset, stressed, suffocated, scared, not in control and “out of his mind”.
Highly sensitive people can also experience anxiety in presence of overload of stimuli. For example, a person might become very overwhelmed and experience panic if they are at a crowd of people, strobe lights, or at a club with loud music. Even something as harmless as a grocery store can be triggering an anxiety due to the amount of choices available.
Symptoms may vary from person to person; they can range from wanting to escape, wanting to throw up, to have migraines, to feeling tensed and scared, to feeling exhausted, and to feel like your head is way up in the clouds.
Treating anxiety with biofeedback:
Managing the symptoms of anxiety is on the path of treating it. For many who suffer from an anxiety or panic disorder, they will usually tell you that it never goes away, but they have learned to control it so that the symptoms are less overwhelming.
Biofeedback gives anxious persons the opportunity to view his or her physiological responses to stress and anxiety. When the person or an individual becomes anxious, some of the changes that will be displayed visually and audibly with the use of non-invasive instruments, and they are:
- Increase in heart rate.
- Hands becoming cold and clammy.
- Rapid or shallow breathing.
- Muscle tension.
- EEG shows higher activity for hi-beta waves in the brain which increases when the person is stressed.
- Loss of metabolic activity in frontal lobe (showing higher activity in the emotional centers of the brain)
For anxiety disorders, Biofeedback is a highly effective research based treatment. The person or individual is taught how to properly respond to their anxiety and it is one of the ways he or she can learn how to manage and control it without the use of medications.
Biofeedback therapy teaches awareness, ways to manage an anxiety attack, the profound relaxation skills and also to control the stress responses. It also teaches the person suffering from anxiety how to control the brain’s activity and maintain the proper brainwave levels to achieve a focused state and calm mind. By returning the individual’s body to a healthier physiological state, the “foggy head” that anxiety cause, as well as the feeling of panic and fear throughout the body are removed.
Biofeedback attracts individuals for a variety of reasons, and they are:
- It’s non-invasive.
- It helps people to feel more in control of their health.
- It might enhance the benefits of medication.
- It helps woman who can’t take medicine at the time of pregnancy.
- It might eliminate or reduce the need of medication.