Whether you’re someone who often deals with anxiety or is new to the feeling of an anxiety attack, it’s important to recognize your triggers. By understanding your triggers, you can hopefully avoid a future anxiety attack or limit the chances of getting one as you attempt to live your normal life. Below are a few potential triggers you may experience in day-to-day life according to your lifestyle.
1. Improper Sleep Schedule
Sleep is everything. Whether you get a good or a bad night’s sleep can impact your morning, your day, and your entire life. Sleep affects our body’s ability to recover and repair, and it affects our memory-making skills and so much more.
Because of this, it’s understandable why to sleep, or the lack thereof can significantly affect our mental health and even trigger an anxiety attack. Whether it be paranoia, a heightened fight or flight response, or another manifestation of your improper sleep schedule, it’s crucial that you work to repair it to avoid future attacks.
The mind can be a person’s greatest downfall. While it can work in conjunction with our desire for our well-being, sometimes, it simply doesn’t. In fact, when we overthink, our mind is often working against us.
With a spiral of non-existent problems or catastrophizing, even the smallest parts of life can equate to an anxiety attack in the end – all caused by our own overthinking.
3. Poor Diet
There is a reason that diet and exercise are among the top medical advice across the board. Our well-being, starting as simple as the diet, can severely impact our ability to be happy and healthy. And the science backs that notion up.
With a poor diet that constantly drags a person down and promotes the opposite of well-being, a person may be more likely to experience anxiety attacks. To help encourage an overall better state of being and hopefully improve mental health – remember, it’s all connected – start on the base level with your diet.
4. Individual Stressors
When it comes to anxiety triggers, they can often be very individualistic. Whether it be speaking in front of a crowd or navigating a crowded space, an anxiety attack can occur at any of these times.
These specific scenarios are often rooted in specific, long-term fears and can be specifically targeted. You may try working with a mental health professional to desensitize your fears through talk therapy or exposure therapy.
While it may be helpful to avoid the specific trigger, avoidance is usually not a long-term solution. W0ork on improving public speech comfortability or addressing other specific stressors.
5. Obsessive, Negative Thinking
As mentioned above, overthinking is a big trigger for anxiety attacks. However, more specifically, obsessive and negative thinking can be even more impactful. If you are someone prone to obsessing over thoughts and spiraling from there, it’s important to avoid this behavior.
Take, for example, being out in a crowded room and thinking, “what if there is a fire?” If you have that thought and don’t dismiss it as irrational, it can multiply and compound until it is unbearable. Obsessive thoughts can be a sign of a greater issue and will usually require professional help to work through.
6. Memories Surfacing
Someone who has bad memories of the past or a more extreme disorder like PTSD may suffer from memory-induced anxiety attacks.
These can be brought on by something as simple as a car in the same shade someone once had or a song coming on in a clothing store that reminds you of something you’d rather forget.
If memories are triggering an anxiety attack, this can be a symptom of a greater problem. You may require professional help in order to work through your trauma.
7. Caffeine or Alcohol
While caffeine is a stimulant and alcohol is a depressant, both beverages have adverse effects on your mental well-being. Caffeine can cause increased heartbeats, rapid thoughts, and other individual effects that encourage an anxiety attack.
On the other hand, alcohol can depress your system so much that you begin to negatively react. Alcohol may let down your walls initially, but it can often invite in obsessive thoughts or promote another cause for anxiety attacks.
For help coping with alcohol dependency, visit here.
- Chaos and Messes
Your environment has a huge effect on your effect to maintain a neutral state. If you’re easily triggered by chaotic environments (think: a messy home, situation out of your control, crowded space, or similar), you may experience anxiety.
While we can often control our personal home environments, the same cannot be done when in a public space or even with friends. It’s important to enter any of these situations relaxed and as carefree as possible to avoid upsetting yourself into an attack.
Unfortunately, anxiety attacks are an all-too-common mental health ailment that people face in day-to-day life. Knowing and avoiding your triggers is important to maintaining a healthy state of being, but it’s not always possible. It’s important to work with professionals to help you cope with your triggers and find a healthy state of being.