Herbal stress relief

Some of the most popular stress relief herbs are:

Ashwagandha Root is said to make you calm even as it makes you strong. The antioxidant effect of active principles of this herb may explain, at least in part, its reported anti-stress properties.

valerian

valerian

Valerian Root contains chemicals with sedative properties to help with an improvement in sleep without morning grogginess or other side effects which leads to a greater overall sense of well being.

Kava Kava which is a member of the pepper family. Kava is consumed as a drink or supplement. In small doses, its effects include muscle relaxation, sleepiness and feelings of well being but is to be taken only in the short-term.

Passion Flower is a popular anti-anxiety remedy, that makes you calm and may help relieve anxiety related stress. The fresh or dried leaves are used to make an infusion, a tea which has been found to contain beta-carboline harmala alkaloids.

St. Johns Wort has been used to treat nervous conditions since ancient Greek times. Clinical studies revealed that it can relieve anxiety and stress. This is probably the most popular plant used for herbal stress relief. Extracts are usually in tablet or capsule form, and also in teabags and tinctures.

chamomile

chamomile

Chamomile has a wonderfully soothing, sedative and absolutely harmless effect so it is the perfect herbal stress relief remedy. The Chamomile flower is brewed as a bitter herb tea infusion. It is also used for preventing nightmares.

Lemon Balm is used medicinally as a herbal tea, or in extract form. It is used as a mild sedative or calming agent. At least one study has found it to be effective for stress relief. Grow it yourself and chop it and spread over your salads.

Hops are more frequently combined with other herbs, like valerian. The relaxing effects of hops is largely due to a specific chemical component: dimethylvinyl carbinol.

Herbal stress relief is worthwhile in pursuing but when purchasing herbs (processed not fresh) try to find out the growing conditions of the herb, the plant parts that are used, time and method of harvest, extraction and other manufacturing processes, and storage. I understand that is not always possible so at least read the labels and I suggest you buy reputable brands so at least you can rely on their reputation for supplying you with a quality product.

I have found that the best one is the one that works best for YOU. Trial and error is the key to success with these herbs.

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An Easy Self Hypnosis Technique

easy self hypnosis

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Self hypnosis is a technique you can use to help you overcome phobias, bad habits and stress.  Self hypnosis techniques are quick and easy to learn and when you do your own hypnosis you are in full control and that is something that you don’t feel you possess when you are stressed, anxious or panicky.

Using auto suggestions is a good start.  Use positive suggestions that are easy to remember. Visualize yourself actually doing or succeeding at this suggestion you are giving yourself.  Don’t be negative and keep them short and to the point as this helps to reinforce them in your mind.

Continue reading An Easy Self Hypnosis Technique

Recognizing panic attack symptoms

Dont Panic

Fear is the most typical of all panic attack symptoms. This is often characterized by the strong desire to flee. You cant predict a panic attack but a trigger is usually responsible for the onset of an attack. Stress, depression, phobias, drugs or a traumatic experience can be triggers.

If you experience immobilizing fear, lack of concentration, depression or phobias then they could lead eventually to a panic attack.

If you have one or more of the panic attack symptoms below then you could be on the verge of a panic attack:

Lightheaded
Tingling in hands, feet or scalp
Sweating
Chest pain or palpitations
Nausea
Chills or hot flushes
Shortness of breath
Intense fear
Diarrhea
Muscle spasm
Dry mouth

During a panic attack many people feel that they will lose control, have a heart attack, are suffering from a serious illness or are ‘going crazy’. Panic attacks usually only last for several minutes but they are frightening.

In my own experience the first panic attack symptom I get is tingling in my fingers and scalp and a dry mouth. I get six of the panic attack symptoms above before and during the attack as well as ‘the wave’ of panic which follows. I will talk about ‘the wave’ another time.

Recognizing the symptoms is a good thing as it alerts me to the fact that I am anxious and I then know to start my breathing techniques to lower my over-breathing which is causing the symptoms, so the panic attack doesn’t come on.

Forewarned is forearmed, so they say, and in my case this warning has helped me many a time.

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Breathing your way through Anxiety

Did you know you can breathe your way through anxiety?

As you get older you no longer get the same amount of oxygen to your lungs as you used to when you were younger.  If you shallow breathe like I do then you will build up more carbon dioxide in your lungs.  This does not help you when you get anxious and can actually lead you to a panic attack.

When you are anxious you also rapid breathe which not only can lead to overall tiredness but is not good for your heart.  It only takes about 5 minutes a day to freshen that stale air that is accumulating and this you can do anytime of the day but at night time these exercises will also relax your for a better sleep.

Here are 3 exercises you can try:

1.  Place your hands on your stomach just below your rib case and slowly breath in and feel your ribs expanding.  slowly breathe out all the way as much as you can.

2. Humming exercises (now don’t laugh) are also helpful and this is where you hum on exhaling.  Concentrate on your breathing and hum each time you exhale.  This help you relax in all part of your body.

3.  Chinese breathing is something new that I have been trying.  Sit down in a comfortable chair, preferably one that doesn’t have arms and take three short breaths through the nose without exhaling between them.

With this technique on the first breath you also have to lift your arms out in front of you , on the second you open up your arms to the side at shoulder level and on the third breathe you lift them over your head.  You then exhale and bring your arms down to your side.

Maybe do it one more time but don’t overdo it as it can make you lightheaded and don’t do this exercise when standing.

I would like you now to watch this video by Wilddivine.com as its a fairly new way to treat anxiety and stress and one I am looking at investigating more.  Click on the link below to watch it.

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