Natural anxiety remedies are generally recognized as safe. However, there are seven things that you might want to consider before starting self treatment. It might be counterproductive to overlook these things. Here are the seven things that may require your attention before you try natural anxiety remedies:
- A physical checkup might be necessary. This is because sometimes anxiety can be a symptom of physical disorders such as hyperthyroidism ie an overactive thyroid gland, Cushing's disease ie a hormonal disorder characterized by high levels of cortisol in the blood, mitral valve prolapse ie a valvular heart disease, etc. If such physical disorders are present then self-medication without consulting a doctor might delay their diagnosis and treatment.
- Anxiety can be the side effect of certain prescription medicines. If you are taking any medication, you might want to ask your doctor for the side-effects of medicines that have been prescribed to you. Your doctor might reduce the dosage or change the prescribed medicines. This is preferable to self-treatment. Anxiety can also be a side-effect of certain illegal substances that are abused for recreation; for example, marijuana, cocaine, amphetamines (Speed), LSD, etc.
- Abruptly stopping alcohol or certain prescription medicines such as alprazolam (Xanax), relaxants, sleeping-pills, tranquilizers, or sedatives can cause severe anxiety. Such substances need to be tapered-off slowly under medical supervision. Relying on natural anxiety remedies and abruptly withdrawing such substances without consulting a health care professional can cause toxic-psychosis or life-threatening seizures.
- Natural anxiety remedies often include herbs for anxiety and sleeplessness. Many herbal remedies for anxiety and sleeplessness are generally recognized as safe (GRAS) by the food and drug administration (FDA), and several herbal extracts available as food-supplements do not require a prescription for their purchase. However, it should be noted that some herbs for anxiety can adversely react with alcohol, drugs and certain prescription medicines. You might want to check the side-effects, interactions, and contraindications of herbal medicines before using them to relieve anxiety or sleeplessness.
- All remedies, including natural anxiety remedies should be used with great caution (or avoided altogether) during pregnancy, breast-feeding, or recovery from liver, kidney, pulmonary or heart disorders. This is especially true of herbal remedies for anxiety.
- Natural anxiety remedies have been in use for thousands of years, but you might still want to make sure that you are not allergic to a particular folk-medicine or herb. In rare cases, a person can be allergic to a particular herb even though it is safe for the majority of people. One way to test if you are allergic to a particular herb or not is to rub a few drops of its extract on your skin and leave it overnight to see if it has any adverse reaction. You might also want to start by consuming tiny amounts of the herbal medicine and gradually increase its dosage over a week or so.
- If you have been suffering from chronic anxiety or sleeplessness and no physical cause can be found for it, natural anxiety remedies especially herbal anxiety remedies might only provide temporary relief. For long-lasting changes you might want to investigate if it is your environment, life-style, nutrition, thought patterns, or something else that is causing you distress. Counseling, cognitive behavior therapy (CBT), and other holistic treatments are generally recommended to permanently get rid of anxiety.