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Tips to Ease Anxiety

January 31, 2018

Related to multiple sclerosis and often overlooked as a symptom of the disease, anxiety is something many struggle with on a daily and life-long basis. Stress and anxiety is especially harmful for those with autoimmune diseases, as it can result in relapses and exacerbated symptoms. Although it is an overlooked symptom, is also affects an estimated 43 percent of MS patients.

“Anxiety disorders are frequently overlooked and often undetected,” the Multiple Sclerosis Association of America wrote. “As a result, they can worsen one’s quality of life and greatly reduce treatment adherence.”

Anxiety levels have been found to be higher when a patient is first diagnosed, as well as when it co-exists with moderate to severe depression. At the onset of disease, one is at their most overwhelmed state, as they must adjust to a new lifestyle as well as other new disrupting symptoms and changes with their body. The unpredictability, and difficulty in planning and preparing for the MS you will have to face is a major drive of anxiety.

While you may not exactly cure your anxiety for good, there are definitely things you can do in order to ease your anxious symptoms.

Opt for an anti-inflammatory diet

A simple change that can benefit your MS begins with your diet. Adopt an anti-inflammatory diet as it will help you avoid sugars and processed foods. This will not only keep you healthier and provide the anti-inflammatory benefits your body needs, but it will allow you to sleep better and make it easier to relax and be zen.

Practice yoga and breathing

Exercise is a natural mood booster which can sometimes have long-lasting effects. It will also allow you to focus your mind and body on something other than your personal life. Practicing different forms of yoga is a perfect example of something you can partake in. Whether you prefer taking an easier, slow-moving meditation based class or a faster class to boost your heartbeat and give you a big workout, yoga can be customized to fit your needs. If you do not feel comfortable taking on a full class, you can practice gentle stretches and breathing techniques on your own time.

Use essential oils

Essential oils can also be helpful in calming you down. Lavender, rose, vetiver, chamomile, bergamot, ylang ylang and frankincense oils are those recommended for mood and anxiety. You can either apply these directly to your skin or use products like oil diffusers.

Don’t be afraid of therapy

Speaking with someone can help you sort your mind out and ease your anxiety tremendously. It can also be easier to speak with someone that isn’t your family or friend, as you may experience even more anxiety by fearing you might worry them with your concerns. Don’t be afraid or shy when asking for help when it comes to your mental health.