How to Erase Anxiety Naturally with Herbs

Five Methods:Getting a DiagnosisUsing Herbal RemediesGetting Enough RestPracticing Relaxation TechniquesSeeking Medical Help

Everyone experiences some form of mild anxiety in their everyday life.[1] However, people with anxiety disorders frequently experience intense, excessive, and persistent fears and worries in regards to everyday situations. These feelings of anxiety, which can start early in life and can continue into adulthood, interfere with daily activities. Using herbal remedies along with making lifestyles changes, finding support, and practicing relaxation techniques can help make your anxiety more manageable.

Method 1
Getting a Diagnosis

  1. Image titled Erase Anxiety Naturally with Herbs Step 1
    Recognize the symptoms of anxiety. Recognizing the symptoms of anxiety is the first step to managing your anxiety and help your doctor determine if you may have some form of an anxiety disorder. There are groups of people that are specifically more prone to issues with anxiety, such as women, individuals who experience traumatic events, individuals who experience extreme stress or mental health disorders, or individuals with a history of alcohol and drug abuse. Common symptoms of anxiety include:
    • Feeling nervous
    • Feeling as if you are in danger or that something is always going to happen to you
    • Experiencing an elevated heart rate
    • Hyperventilation, sweating, and shaking
    • Having feelings of weakness or tiredness without cause
    • Inability or issues paying attention or thinking about anything other than current anxieties[2]
  2. Image titled Erase Anxiety Naturally with Herbs Step 2
    Understand types of anxiety. There are multiple kinds of disorders that deal with anxiety. Although most can manifest in similar ways, these disorders generally occur due to different events in your life. Generalized anxiety disorder includes persistent and unnecessary worries about everyday, common events or activities, which can disrupt concentration and lead to other issues, such as depression.
    • You may also suffer from agoraphobia, which is an intense and irrational fear of places or events, which cause you anxiety, embarrassment, or despair.
    • Another common disorder is social anxiety disorder, which involves extreme levels of anxiety. These individuals also avoid social situations because to embarrassment, self-consciousness, and concern about being seen badly by others.
    • Selective mutism is another anxiety disorder, which is a constant and long-lasting failure to talk in certain situations, such as school, work, or social events, even when you speak normally in other situations. This disorder can disrupt school, work, and social functioning.
    • Panic disorder is also a common anxiety disorder, which involves multiple episodes of extreme fear, anxiety, or dread. These events are called panic attacks. Feelings of impending doom, trouble breathing, heart palpitations, or pains in the chest are all symptoms of panic attacks.
    • Separation anxiety disorder is another disorder, which is a common childhood disorder that occurs when a child is separated from their parents or guardians, characterized by unnecessary anxiety.
    • If you are a drug user, you may be suffering from substance-induced anxiety disorder, which causes panic attacks and anxiety due to the drug use. This disorder can also be caused by medications, toxic substances, or drug and alcohol withdrawal.
    • Certain phobias can cause major anxiety when exposed to a specific object or situation, and may provoke panic attacks in some people.[3]
  3. Image titled Erase Anxiety Naturally with Herbs Step 3
    Diagnose the cause. Traumatic events, extreme change, heredity factors, or intense stress can cause anxiety disorders. Sometimes, anxiety can occur as a warning sign or side effect of an underlying medical issue. This is more likely if no one in your family have anxiety, if you never experienced anxiety as a child, or if have a sudden onset of anxiety that seems to not be connected to your daily life.
    • Anxiety can also be a side effect of certain medications.
    • If your doctor suspects your anxiety has a medical cause, they may suggest tests to look for signs of a problem.
    • Common conditions linked with anxiety are heart disease, diabetes, thyroid problems, asthma, drug and alcohol abuse or withdrawal, irritable bowel syndrome, premenstrual syndrome, and, in rare cases, tumors.[4]
  4. Image titled Erase Anxiety Naturally with Herbs Step 4
    Visit your doctor. Anxiety may not fade or disappear on its own. It can also get worse over time if you don’t seek medical help. Anxiety is easier to treat if you get help when you first notice the signs. Get a medical examination to help you determine if your anxiety is temporary or if you have some sort of anxiety disorder.
    • Never take herbs, supplements, or medications for anxiety without your doctor’s approval, as some can cause side effects. You should see your healthcare provider or seek medical care immediately if you experience anxiety that is interfering with your work, relationships and daily activities. Also talk to you doctor if you experience panic attacks a lot, your anxiety is causing stress and fatigue, you feel depressed, have trouble with alcohol or drug use, or have other mental health concerns, or you think your anxiety may be the result of a physical health problem.
    • Seek medical care immediately or call 911 if have suicidal thoughts or behaviours.[5][6]

Method 2
Using Herbal Remedies

  1. Image titled Erase Anxiety Naturally with Herbs Step 5
    Use ginger. Ginger is a root that can help reduce symptoms of anxiety as well as nausea. Ginger extract is available in dietary capsules or as oil, which can be purchased at many nutrition retailers. Ginger can be strong, so the daily recommended ingestion for ginger is, at most, 4 g. This includes any ginger you get from food or drinks as well as any dietary supplements or oils you use.
    • Pregnant women should not have more than 1 g of ginger daily. Don't ingest ginger if you have a bleeding disorder or are taking blood-thinning medications, including aspirin.[7]
    • You can also add ginger root to recipes, such as stir fries, marinades, or other recipes to get more of it in your diet. Follow the same guidelines for ingestion as with supplements.
  2. Image titled Erase Anxiety Naturally with Herbs Step 6
    Drink chamomile tea. Chamomile can help relieve anxiety, stress, and insomnia. It may be especially effective for people with mild to moderate general anxiety disorder. To make chamomile tea, pour 1 cup of boiling water over 2 to 3 teaspoon of dried flowers, and steep for 10 to 15 minutes. Drink at least 2 to 3 times daily, especially before bedtime.
    • Don’t give chamomile to a child without consulting a doctor or pediatrician first.
    • Avoid using chamomile if you are taking sedatives, blood-thinning medications, birth control pills, statins, or medicine for blood pressure or diabetes.[8]
  3. Image titled Erase Anxiety Naturally with Herbs Step 7
    Use lemon balm. Lemon balm is a herb often used to reduce stress and anxiety, promote sleep, and improve appetite. It is also often combined with other calming, soothing herbs, such as valerian and chamomile to help increase relaxation. Lemon balm contains phytochemicals such as tannins, which contribute to lemon balm’s antifungal and antiviral effects, and eugenol, which stops muscle spasms and kills bacteria that hurts you. Essential oils made from lemon balm leaves contain a substance called terpene, which helps relaxation and fight viruses.
    • Lemon balm is available as a dietary capsule supplement with a recommendation of 300 to 500 mg, up to three times daily.
    • Pregnant or breastfeeding women should consult with a doctor before using lemon balm.[9]
  4. Image titled Erase Anxiety Naturally with Herbs Step 8
    Try Saint John’s wort. St. John’s wort is a herb used to treat mild to moderate anxiety and depression. It is available as a liquid extract, capsules, tablets, and commercial tea. Ask your doctor which will be right for you. Supplements are standardized to 0.3% hypericin concentration, one of the active compounds in the herb, and should be taken three times daily in 300 mg doses. It may take three to four weeks to show significant improvements. Don’t stop taking St. John’s wort all at once, because that may cause side effects. Gradually lower the dose over a period of time.
    • If you get headaches from the herb, stop using it.
    • Individuals with attention deficit disorder (ADD) and bipolar disorder should not use St. John’s wort.
    • If you are taking medications such as antidepressants, sedatives, birth control pills, or allergy drugs, don't use St. John's Wart.
    • Pregnant and breastfeeding women should not use St. John’s wort.[10]
  5. Image titled Erase Anxiety Naturally with Herbs Step 9
    Consider lavender. Lavender is a powerful, pleasantly scented herb known for its calming properties and widely used in aromatherapy to induce relaxation. Studies show that the scent of lavender produces calming and soothing effects that can help reduce insomnia, anxiety, and depression. It is available as an essential oil, bath gels, extracts, infusions, lotions, soaps, teas, tinctures, and as whole dried flowers.
    • Add 2 to 4 drops of lavender essential oil to 2 to 3 cups of boiling water to make a steam inhalation to reduce headaches, insomnia, anxiety, and depression. See your doctor before using inhalations if you have a respiratory condition or experience any irritation in your eyes or lungs.
    • To make a tea, steep ½ a teaspoon of dried lavender flowers to 1 cup of boiling water. Strain and drink up to two times per day or as directed by your doctor. Do not add lavender oil to teas or foods, as lavender essential oil is toxic if taken orally.
    • Do not give lavender to boys who have not yet reached puberty, as it can cause hormonal changes to occur. If you have any concerns, speak to your doctor before using lavender products for your child.[11]
  6. Image titled Erase Anxiety Naturally with Herbs Step 10
    Try valerian. Research suggests that valerian can help ease anxiety, insomnia, and nervous restlessness. Valerian is also available as a tincture, fluid extract, dry powdered extract, or tea at pharmacies and nutrition food stores. Try making valerian tea one to two hours before bedtime, by steeping 1 tsp of dried root in 1 cup of boiling water to help you sleep better and reduce anxiety. It may take a few weeks to fully gain the benefits of valerian.
    • Don’t use valerian for longer than one month without your doctor approval.
    • As valerian root has a sharp odor, it may be mixed with other calming herbs such as passionflower, lemon balm, or hops to mask the scent.
    • Do not take valerian during the day, before driving, operating heavy machinery, or other things that require you to be alert. Do not give valerian to a child without consulting your doctor or pediatrician.
    • Avoid using valerian prior to surgery or if you are taking medications such as sedatives, antihistamines, or statins.[12][13]
  7. Image titled Erase Anxiety Naturally with Herbs Step 11
    Use passionflower. Passion flower is an herbal sedative that can give you a sense of calm and help you sleep better. It's often used to treat insomnia related to anxiety. Passion flower can also help control nausea and the feeling of having anxious stomach flutters. Passion flower is also used to treat anxiety disorder, a more serious form of anxiety.
    • If you are pregnant, do not take passion flower. It may be unsafe for women who are carrying a child, since it contains chemicals that may cause the uterus to contract.[14]
  8. Image titled Erase Anxiety Naturally with Herbs Step 12
    Consider using L-theanine. L-theanine is an amino acid commonly found in green tea and certain supplements. L-Theanine has been shown to reduce mental and physical stress and may produce feelings of relaxation without drowsiness.
    • Ask your doctor before using theanine or giving it to a child, especially if you are taking other medications, herbs or supplements for anxiety.[15]
  9. Image titled Erase Anxiety Naturally with Herbs Step 13
    Avoid kava kava. Kava kava was previously believed to be a good treatment for anxiety, but new research shows that kava kava can cause serious liver damage, even with short term use. While the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued warnings regarding kava, it may still be sold at some food stores.
    • Avoid kava kava especially if you have liver problems or take medications that affect your liver.[16]

Method 3
Getting Enough Rest

  1. Image titled Erase Anxiety Naturally with Herbs Step 14
    Get enough sleep. Getting adequate sleep can help manage your anxiety. Studies show that sleep deprivation increases the creation of stress hormones, increases anxiety, and may also weaken the immune system. Avoid caffeine, nicotine, alcohol, and sugary drinks four to six hours before sleeping. These can act as a stimulant to keep you awake. Alcohol dependence has also been linked to increased risk of anxiety, and anxiety may provoke alcohol abuse, so limit your daily intake to one cup of alcohol during the day.
    • Avoid activities such as work or exercise three to four hours prior to sleeping. Physically and psychologically stressful activities can cause the body to secrete the stress hormone cortisol, which is associated with increasing alertness.[17][18][19]
  2. Image titled Erase Anxiety Naturally with Herbs Step 15
    Create a sleep schedule. A regular sleep schedule helps to ensure consistent, better quality sleep. Set a routine by going to bed early and waking up early to set your body’s internal clock. For example, plan to get up at 8:00 AM every morning, and go to bed at 11:00 PM every night.
    • Stick to those times every day of the week to help get your body acclimated to being awake at certain times and asleep at other times.[20]
  3. Image titled Erase Anxiety Naturally with Herbs Step 16
    Dim the lights. Before you go to bed, turn off the lights to make your room dark and primed for sleeping. Create a room that will help you fall asleep. Reduce the amount of light and noise that comes into your room as much as possible. Close your curtains or blinds to make your room dark. Also try to wear an eye mask to block out light if you can't limit all light. When you are in a dark environment, your body makes melatonin, which is the hormone that regulates sleep.
    • Also keep the temperature comfortably cool between 65 and 75 degrees F. Also try to keep air moving in and out to stop your room from being stuffy.[21]
  4. Image titled Erase Anxiety Naturally with Herbs Step 17
    Try relaxing. If you have trouble falling asleep, relaxation techniques can help relieve physical and psychological stress. Stressful activities can cause the body to secrete cortisol, the stress hormone associated with alertness and anxiety. Find the things that help you relax and make them into a bedtime ritual. Read a book, listen to calm music, or practice breathing exercises as forms of relaxation.
    • Struggling to fall asleep can lead to frustration. If you struggle to fall asleep for an extended period of time, change locations. Do something relaxing for a while, then come back to bed.[22][23][24]
  5. Image titled Erase Anxiety Naturally with Herbs Step 18
    Avoid using gadgets before bed. The light that comes from electronic devices can reduce the amount of melatonin that your brain secretes. This lack of melatonin can make it difficult for your to fall asleep.
    • Gadgets to avoid at least two hours before bed include cell phones, smart phones, televisions, and computers[25]

Method 4
Practicing Relaxation Techniques

  1. Image titled Erase Anxiety Naturally with Herbs Step 19
    Avoid stress. Extreme stress or the inability to handle stressful situations can often lead to anxiety, depression, and various other diseases. As people age, achieving a relaxation response after a stressful event becomes more difficult. To avoid stress, make time for recreation, perform low, deep breathing in a quiet environment, focus on positive outcomes, restructure priorities, and eliminate unnecessary tasks.
    • Try humor as a relaxation technique. Research has found humor to be an effective way to deal with acute stress.[26]
  2. Image titled Erase Anxiety Naturally with Herbs Step 20
    Do yoga. Yoga can help promote relaxation and reduces stress and anxiety. It also improves your fitness, health, and self-confidence. People who practice yoga tend to have good posture, range of motion, flexibility, concentration, sleep habits, and digestion. You can learn yoga from DVDs at home or by taking a group class with an experienced instructor. These generally last for 45 to 90 minutes.
    • Once you learn the moves from class, you can also practice at home on your own. Try to do yoga for at least 10 to 15 minutes a day to get the most benefit from yoga.
    • If you take a class, make sure the instructor is trained to teach yoga before signing up.[27]
  3. Image titled Erase Anxiety Naturally with Herbs Step 21
    Practice tai chi. Tai chi is an disciplined exercise that comes from martial arts. Most of the movements in Tai chi are slow and deliberate, which promotes meditation. The moves are generally done while breathing deeply to help produce a calm reaction. Tai chi also helps your health, fitness, and overall well being. Anyone can learn tai chi, whether from a class or home video. If you join a class, which will likely only be a couple of times a week, pay attention to the moves so you can do them at home. Try to do tai chi for 15 to 20 minutes each day to relax yourself and reduce anxiety.
    • The muscle exercises help give your body an overall feeling of calm. The breathing not only aids in this relaxation, it also helps give your body an increase in oxygen and helps blood circulation.[28]

Method 5
Seeking Medical Help

  1. Image titled Erase Anxiety Naturally with Herbs Step 22
    Ask your doctor about medication. Your doctor may recommend medications to help you deal with your anxiety. Tell your doctor about any foods, supplements, herbs, and other medications you are currently taking. They can cause side effects when taken with medication for anxiety. If you think your symptoms are getting worse or you are experiencing symptoms that you believe may be related to use of anxiety medications, let your doctor know immediately. Medications for anxiety include:
    • Antidepressants such as fluoxetine, imipramine, paroxetine, sertraline, and venlafaxine, which influence the activity of brain chemicals, called neurotransmitters, to help control anxiety and depression. Some antidepressants such as citalopram or escitalopram should not be taken in doses of more than 20 mg a day.
    • Buspirone, which is an anti-anxiety medication that works similarly to antidepressants but can take up to several weeks to become fully effective.
    • In rare circumstances, you doctor may prescribe benzodiazepines, which are sedatives to help relieve anxiety on a short-term basis. People with a history of substance abuse should avoid benzodiazepines, as they can be addictive.[29]
  2. Image titled Erase Anxiety Naturally with Herbs Step 23
    See a therapist. Your doctor may refer you to a licensed psychological therapist for psychotherapy, also known as talk therapy or psychological counseling. It can be an effective treatment for anxiety. Cognitive behavioral therapy is one of the most effective forms of psychotherapy for anxiety disorders. Psychologist and psychiatrists often use cognitive behavioral therapy, which focuses on teaching you specific skills to gradually return to the activities you've avoided because of anxiety. Through this process, your symptoms improve as you build upon your initial success.
    • If you can't find a psychologist or psychiatrist, also look for psychiatric nurses, licensed clinical social workers, marriage and family therapists, and licensed professional counselors in your area.[30][31]
  3. Image titled Erase Anxiety Naturally with Herbs Step 24
    Get regular exercise. Your healthcare provider or fitness instructor can help you come up with a personalized fitness plan to help you manage your anxiety. According to research, regular exercise helps reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression over time, and people who exercise regularly are less likely to experience anxiety or depression. One vigorous exercise session can help alleviate symptoms for hours, and a regular schedule may significantly reduce them in your everyday life. Try to get at least two and a half hours of moderate intensity exercise a week, such as brisk walking or jogging, or one and a fourth hours of high intensity workout, such as strength training or sports.
    • Get at least 30 minutes moderate exercise at least five times a week. This can be brisk walking, jogging, swimming, or any other activity you like that gets your heart rate up. Split your exercises smaller workouts over the course of the day if its hard for you to do all at once.
    • Set daily goals and aim for daily consistency. Walking for a short time every day is better than trying to get your exercise in all in one or two days over the weekend, not matter how long you exercise.
    • Find a workout buddy. It is much easier to stick to a schedule if you have someone else to help motivate you. Plus it makes it more fun.
    • Listen to music, an audio book, or podcast while you work out. It will help motivate you and distract you from how hard you are working.[32][33]
  4. Image titled Erase Anxiety Naturally with Herbs Step 25
    Go outdoors. There is increasing evidence that closeness to the natural environment is healthy. One study found that living in a green environment helps you stay fit, reduce stress, and manage symptoms of anxiety. Pollution exposure in homes and offices has also been found to be greater than outdoors. Activities such as gardening, hiking, and playing tennis outdoors can help reduce stress and promote overall well being.
    • Try to make time for outdoor recreational activities at least one to two hours per week.
  5. Image titled Erase Anxiety Naturally with Herbs Step 26
    Try biofeedback. Biofeedback is a method of bodily control where you teach yourself to regulate your normal body processes. This includes the rate of your heart, any muscle stiffness, body temperature, and sometimes blood pressure. You keep track of it through the use of electrodes, which are attached to you body in order to monitor how well you are regulating your own body processes. If you want to learn this, you will likely be assigned a biofeedback therapist, who will help you learn how to regulate each of these areas of your body processes. This has been shown to help with anxiety and depression as well as headaches and chronic pain.
    • Psychiatrists, psychologists, and physicians can be qualified practitioners for biofeedback therapy.[34]
  6. Image titled Erase Anxiety Naturally with Herbs Step 27
    Try acupuncture. Acupuncture helps stimulate specific points on the body by inserting thin needles through the skin. Studies show that acupuncture may help reduce anxiety, relieve headaches, and alleviate stress. Acupuncture generally has no side effects when performed by an experienced practitioner, however improper use of needles may result in potentially dangerous side effects.
    • Make sure that your practitioner is licensed to perform acupuncture therapy.
    • It is best to avoid strenuous physical activity, heavy meals, alcohol intake, or sexual activity for up to 8 hours after a treatment.[35]

Sources and Citations

Show more... (32)

Article Info

Categories: Herbal Health | Stress Anxiety and Crisis Management