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How to Help Someone with Anxiety

a therapist shakes a person's hand while their loved one looks on after learning how to help someone with anxiety

Anxiety is a normal human emotion that nearly everyone will experience from time to time. However, for some individuals, anxiety can become persistent, overwhelming, and even debilitating. Learning how to help someone with anxiety can give you the tools needed to support friends or family when they need you most.

7 Summit Pathways offers anxiety treatment in Tampa, FL for people living with addiction and co-occurring anxiety. Our team of behavioral health and addiction professionals has decades of experience helping people reconnect with the seven dimensions of wellness as they make strides toward a healthier future. Learn more about how to help someone with anxiety by contacting our team today at 813.212.7149.

Understanding Anxiety

Anxiety is a natural response to stress and can manifest in various ways. People with anxiety may experience a range of physical, emotional, and mental symptoms. Some common signs of anxiety include:

  • Excessive worry or fear
  • Restlessness
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Irritability
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Muscle tension
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Shortness of breath

When anxiety co-occurs with addiction, it can further complicate an individual’s recovery process. It is essential to address both issues to promote overall well-being and long-term recovery.

Ways to Help Someone with Anxiety

Learn how to help someone with anxiety so you can provide comfort and safety when they are at their most vulnerable. Here are some ways you can help:

Listen and Offer Support

One of the most important things you can do to help someone with anxiety is to listen to them without judgment. Let them express their feelings and concerns openly. Offer your support and reassure them that they are not alone in their struggles.

Encourage Healthy Lifestyle Choices

Encouraging healthy lifestyle choices can help alleviate anxiety symptoms. Suggest engaging in regular exercise, eating a balanced diet, getting enough sleep, and reducing caffeine intake. Additionally, encourage them to avoid alcohol and drugs, as these substances can exacerbate anxiety.

Teach Relaxation Techniques

Relaxation techniques such as deep breathing exercises, progressive muscle relaxation, and mindfulness meditation can be helpful in managing anxiety. Teach your loved one these techniques and practice them together.

Help Them Identify and Challenge Negative Thoughts

People with anxiety often struggle with negative thoughts and beliefs. Help your loved one identify these thoughts and challenge them with more balanced and realistic perspectives. Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) techniques can be useful in this process.

Set Small, Achievable Goals

Breaking tasks into smaller, manageable steps can make them feel less overwhelming for someone with anxiety. Help your loved one set realistic goals and celebrate their achievements along the way.

At the end of the day, you may not be able to provide the level of help they need. A licensed behavioral health specialist will be able to help them manage their symptoms.

When to Seek Anxiety Treatment

It’s essential to recognize when professional help for anxiety is necessary. Here are some signs that it may be time to seek treatment:

  • Anxiety is interfering with daily activities and responsibilities
  • Symptoms are persistent and worsen over time
  • The individual is experiencing panic attacks or severe physical symptoms
  • Self-help strategies are not providing sufficient relief
  • The person is struggling with suicidal thoughts or self-harm behaviors

If you recognize these symptoms in a friend or family, it might be time to offer some help to find professional support.

Benefits of Professional Help for Anxiety

Seeking professional help for anxiety can provide numerous benefits, including:

  • A thorough assessment and accurate diagnosis
  • Personalized treatment plans tailored to the individual’s needs
  • Access to evidence-based therapies, such as CBT, exposure therapy, and medication management
  • Support from mental health professionals who understand the complexities of co-occurring anxiety and addiction

Remember that seeking professional help is a crucial step in managing anxiety, particularly when it co-occurs with addiction.

Anxiety Treatment in Tampa, FL at 7 Summit Pathways

At 7 Summit Pathways, we offer comprehensive co-occurring disorder services for clients in Tampa, FL who are living with anxiety and addiction. Our team of experienced professionals is dedicated to helping individuals live better lives. Learn more by contacting us today at 813.212.7149.