Fitness Facts: How to quell anxiety

By Lyndee Johnson
Family Nurse Practitioner, Canyon Health and Wellness Clinic

Anxiety is a common complaint we see in the clinic. Usually it’s related to academics, family dynamics or the stress of living on one’s own for the first time.

Occasionally, this anxiety can lead to panic attacks with real physical symptoms. This may include increased heart rate, heart palpitations, dizziness, mind racing, increased sweating and heightened senses despite no external threat. 

These symptoms can last seconds or even minutes. If you’ve ever had a panic attack, it feels as if it lasts forever and that you must be on your way to meet your Maker.

I imagine in the midst of COVID-19, we all may be suffering from a low level of unexpected anxiety. If we watch too much of the news, a panic attack could surprise us.

One of my favorite techniques when symptoms arise is the use of mindfulness. We can involve our senses by actually engaging them in what is happening now.

For example:

  • Sight: I can see the clock on the wall.
  • Touch: I can feel my toes on the floor.
  • Smell: I can smell the orange blossoms outside my window.
  • Sound: I can hear my roommates talking in the hallway.
  • Taste: This lemonade is sweet on my tongue.

This can slow down the fight-and-flight response and remind the body that you are safe.

My favorite technique is actually the use of deep breathing and Scripture. I like to say this out loud:

  • Be still and know that I am God. (Deep breath in and out).
  • Be still and know. (Deep breath in and out).
  • Be still. (Deep breath in and out).
  • (Deep breath in and out).

This can be repeated as many times as needed or subbed with other Bible passages or encouraging words. 

Remember you are not alone and that we are available in the clinic if you need additional help and resources.

The Lord Himself goes before you and will be with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.Deuteronomy 31:8

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Bible Verse

May I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world. (Galatians 6:14)

To Read More: www.verseoftheday.com/