Many events or factors can lead to symptoms of anxiety, including stress and major life change, genetics, hormonal shifts and anything in between. It’s been estimated that approximately 18% of Americans suffer from some type of disorder related to anxiety, yet most do not seek help or treatment. However, anxiety is a mental condition that is very treatable, and making simple changes can make a big difference in combating its side effects.

1. See a Professional for Diagnosis, Guidance and Support

Even if your symptoms seem relatively mild, it’s important to see a professional, such as Jack Wu MD, to receive a proper diagnosis and treatment plan. Many doctors will recommend some type of therapy to help patients handle their symptoms and identify underlying causes. Medication is also an option for those who may need it and can make life much more manageable for those with more severe symptoms.

2. Make Restful Sleep a Top Priority

Anxiety is often much worse when sleep deprivation occurs. Do everything possible to get a good night’s sleep. Establish a schedule and stick to it, bake your bed comfortable and inviting and utilize natural sleep aids like melatonin if you have trouble falling asleep at night.

3. Eat Nourishing Foods

Vitamin and nutrient deficiencies can make anxiety worse. Eat hearty and balanced meals to give yourself the best chance to stay energized and nourished. Certain vitamin supplements, like D and B-12 have been shown to help improve symptoms.

4. Choose a Positive and Calming Activity

When you feel the effects of anxiety coming over you, it’s best to have a practice or activity that helps calm or distract you. Watch a funny show or movie, go for a walk with a friend or read your favorite types of books to settle your mind.

If you experience anxiety in your life, there are helpful ways to set yourself up for success in coping with and overcoming this often-frustrating syndrome. It is always better to prepare than react, so put a plan in place today.