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Tag Archives: Anxiety: Practical Management Techniques

Sedentary Lifestyle Can Increase Anxiety

By Lecia Bushak

computer anxietySitting in front of a TV, laptop, or computer all day is certainly bad for your physical health; but it’s also detrimental to your mental health.

We already know that sitting is bad for pretty much every aspect of your health: It weakens your muscles, impairs blood circulation, and increases your risk of chronic diseases like heart disease, cancer, and obesity. But it turns out that sitting all day at work, then sitting all night at home in front of the TV, are detrimental to your mental health, too.

A new study examines how a sedentary lifestyle can increase your anxiety. Researchers out of Deakin University’s Centre for Physical Activity and Nutrition Research in Australia found that low-energy activities and sitting down likely makes your anxiety worse. Working at a computer all day, watching TV, playing video games, or simply crouching over your phone or laptop in bed are all considered low-energy activities that are eating away at your mental acuity.

Megan Teychenne, the lead researcher of the study, notes that modern society has seen a huge surge of anxiety disorders in recent years. In the US, anxiety affects some 40 million adults, or 18 percent of the population, according to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America. While this increase in anxiety might result from several factors, such as more frequent use of distracting technology and social media or increased urban sprawl and air pollution, the researchers wanted to investigate the link between anxiety and sedentary living.

“We are seeing an increase in anxiety symptoms in our modern society, which seems to parallel the increase in sedentary behavior,” Teychenne said in a press release. “Thus, we were interested to see whether these two factors were in fact linked.”

The study analyzed nine different studies that had previously examined anxiety and sedentary behavior. Five of the nine studies found that sedentary behavior was associated with a higher risk of anxiety.

One-third of American adults are obese, and the majority of Americans live sedentary lifestyles that fuel obesity, diabetes, and heart disease. The mental health consequences of the obesity epidemic haven’t been explored, though plenty of studies have associated lack of physical activity with an increased risk of depression and anxiety. When your day is especially sedentary, make the choice to take a step outside and go for a thirty minute walk. The exercise, and hopefully time spent in nature, will do your body and mind good.

“It is important that we understand the behavioral factors that may be linked to anxiety — in order to be able to develop evidence-based strategies in preventing/managing this illness,” Teychenne said. “Our research showed that evidence is available to suggest a positive association between sitting time and anxiety symptoms, however, the direction of this relationship still needs to be determined through longitudinal and interventional studies.”

Source: Constantly Sitting Down, Being Sedentary Could Worsen Anxiety And Mental Health

Related Article: Health risks of spending too long working at a computer – In our modern society, both our careers and our recreational activities are becoming more focused around computers. Although this has many benefits, spending too long working at a computer can cause multiple health issues. There are several steps you can put into place to ensure that you stay healthy and productive whilst working at your computer.

Related Online CEU Course:

Anxiety: Practical Management Techniques is a 4-hour online CEU course for healthcare professionals. Nearly every client who walks through a health professional’s door is experiencing some form of anxiety. Even if they are not seeking treatment for a specific anxiety disorder, they are likely experiencing anxiety as a side effect of other clinical issues. For this reason, a solid knowledge of anxiety management skills should be a basic component of every therapist’s repertoire. Clinicians who can teach practical anxiety management techniques have tools that can be used in nearly all clinical settings and client diagnoses. Anxiety management benefits the clinician as well, helping to maintain energy, focus, and inner peace both during and between sessions. The purpose of this course is to offer a collection of ready-to-use anxiety management tools. Course #40-12 | 2007 | 41 pages | 30 posttest questions

This online course provides instant access to the course materials (PDF download) and CE test. After enrolling, click on My Account and scroll down to My Active Courses. From here you’ll see links to download/print the course materials and take the CE test (you can print the test to mark your answers on it while reading the course document). Successful completion of the online CE test (80% required to pass, 3 chances to take) and course evaluation are required to earn a certificate of completion. Click here to learn more.

Professional Development Resources is approved by the American Psychological Association (APA) to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. Professional Development Resources maintains responsibility for all programs and content. Professional Development Resources is also approved by the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC); the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB); the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA); the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA); the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR); the California Board of Behavioral Sciences; the Florida Boards of Social Work, Mental Health Counseling and Marriage and Family Therapy, Psychology & School Psychology, Dietetics & Nutrition, Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology, and Occupational Therapy Practice; the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker & MFT Board; the South Carolina Board of Professional Counselors & MFTs; and by theTexas Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists and State Board of Social Worker Examiners.

 

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Anxiety: Practical Management Techniques

By Lisa M. Schab, MSW, LCSW

Anxiety: Practical Management TechniquesNearly every client who walks through a health professional’s door is experiencing some form of anxiety. Even if they are not seeking treatment for a specific anxiety disorder, they are likely experiencing anxiety as a side effect of other clinical issues. For this reason, a solid knowledge of anxiety management skills should be a basic component of every therapist’s repertoire. Clinicians who can teach practical anxiety management techniques have tools that can be used in nearly all clinical settings and client diagnoses. Anxiety management benefits the clinician as well, helping to maintain energy, focus, and inner peace both during and between sessions.

Since one of the greatest obstacles to practicing anxiety management is finding the time and energy to actually do the exercises, one of the basic challenges in teaching these techniques is convincing the client that it is a realistic practice. Many people view adding anxiety management techniques to their life schedule as an imposition. Most are already overloaded with the responsibilities of daily life (which contributes to their anxiety) and the thought of having to add more responsibilities to that mix can appear a daunting or unrealistic task (and raise their anxiety even more). Therefore, this course is designed to provide a majority of techniques that can be used simply, in a short period of time, and can be incorporated into daily life with as little disruption as possible.

Anxiety management techniques are most effective when presented in a manner that gives the client the hope that they can actually practice them. Two key questions that help to achieve this are: “Do you breathe?” and “Do you think?” When the client answers, “yes,” you can then inform them that they are already practicing the two most powerful tools for staying calm. However, the way they are using the tools may be contributing to their anxiety rather than diminishing it. Success can be achieved when they simply learn to use their tools in a different way.

The two premises behind the effectiveness of these tools – breathing and thinking – are basic physiology and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. Physiology tells us that the depth and speed of our inhalations and exhalations will affect the amount of tension in our bodies. The amount of oxygen flowing in and out of our bodies will also affect our ability to think clearly. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy instructs us that the way we think determines our feelings. The thoughts we choose at any given moment will directly and significantly affect our anxiety level.

Since breathing and thinking are behaviors that are practiced constantly, no matter where a client is or what they are doing, clients can then understand that they will have the time and the energy to use these two important tools realistically and practically in their daily lives. They need no special equipment, no scheduled appointment, no special block of time, and no particular location. These are tools that they carry with them and can use at every single moment. Two of the sections which follow – those on breath work and cognitive restructuring – address these physiological and cognitive techniques in detail. A great number of exercises in the other sections are also based on these two techniques.

Anxiety: Practical Management Techniques

4-Hour Online CEU Course

Learn more and earn 4 hours of continuing education credits by taking the Anxiety: Practical Management Techniques online CE course. Nearly every client who walks through a health professional’s door is experiencing some form of anxiety. Even if they are not seeking treatment for a specific anxiety disorder, they are likely experiencing anxiety as a side effect of other clinical issues. For this reason, a solid knowledge of anxiety management skills should be a basic component of every therapist’s repertoire. Clinicians who can teach practical anxiety management techniques have tools that can be used in nearly all clinical settings and client diagnoses. Anxiety management benefits the clinician as well, helping to maintain energy, focus, and inner peace both during and between sessions. The purpose of this course is to offer a collection of ready-to-use anxiety management tools. Course #40-12 | 2007 | 41 pages | 30 posttest questions

This online course provides instant access to the course materials (PDF download) and CE test. Successful completion of the online CE test (80% required to pass, 3 chances to take) and course evaluation are required to earn a certificate of completion. You can print the test (download test from My Courses tab of your account after purchasing) to mark your answers on it while reading the course document. Then submit online when ready to receive credit.

Professional Development Resources is approved to offer continuing education by the American Psychological Association (APA); the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC); the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB); the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA); the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA); the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR); the California Board of Behavioral Sciences; the Florida Boards of Social Work, Mental Health Counseling and Marriage and Family Therapy, Psychology & School Psychology, Dietetics & Nutrition, Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology, and Occupational Therapy Practice; the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker & MFT Board; the South Carolina Board of Professional Counselors & MFTs; and by theTexas Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists and State Board of Social Worker Examiners.

 

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Anxiety: What It Is and How to Treat It

If you suffer from anxiety, you’re not alone. Anxiety disorders affect 40 million U.S. adults, according to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America.

AnxietyAnxiety is your body’s natural response to stress. It is a feeling of fear and apprehension about what’s to come. We all feel it at times; the first day of school, going to a job interview, or giving a speech cause most people to feel fearful and nervous. But if your feelings of anxiety are extreme, last for longer than six months, and are interfering with your life, you may have an anxiety disorder.

Who Gets Anxiety Disorders?

Anxiety disorders can affect anyone at any age. Anxiety disorders are the most common form of emotional disorder. Approximately 40 million American adults (18 percent of the population) are affected by an anxiety disorder in any given year.

If you have an anxiety disorder, you may also be depressed. Some people with anxiety disorders abuse alcohol or other drugs in an effort to feel better. This may provide temporary relief, but can ultimately make the condition worse. It may be necessary to treat an alcohol or drug problem before the anxiety can be addressed.

What Does Anxiety Feel Like?

Anxiety is hard to describe. You might feel like you’re standing in the middle of a crumbling building with nothing but an umbrella to protect you. Or you might feel like you’re holding onto a merry-go-round going 65 mph and can’t do anything to slow it down. You might feel butterflies in your stomach, or your heart might be racing. You could experience nightmares, panic, or painful thoughts or memories that you can’t control. You may have a general feeling of fear and worry, or you may fear a specific place or event.

What Is the Difference Between Anxiety and an Anxiety Disorder?

Anxiety is a feeling of fear you have when you must do something stressful. It’s normal to feel anxious about moving to a new place, starting a new job, or taking a test. Normal anxiety is unpleasant, but it may motivate you to work harder and do a better job. Normal anxiety is a feeling that comes and goes, but does not interfere with your everyday life.

In the case of an anxiety disorder, the feeling of fear may be with you all the time. It is intense and sometimes debilitating. This type of anxiety may cause you to stop doing things you enjoy. In extreme cases, it may prevent you from entering an elevator or crossing the street or even leaving your home. If left untreated, the anxiety will keep getting worse.

How Do You Treat Anxiety?

Anxiety disorders can be treated with medication, psychotherapy, or a combination of the two. Some people who have a mild anxiety disorder or a fear of something they can easily avoid decide to live with the condition and to not seek treatment.

It is important to understand that anxiety disorder is an illness and can be treated, even in severe cases. Treatment may not result in a complete cure, but in most cases, the symptoms can be controlled so you can live a normal life.

Source: http://www.healthline.com/health/anxiety

Related Online Continuing Education Courses for Healthcare Professionals:

Anxiety: Practical Management Techniques

4-Hour Online CE Course

Anxiety: Practical Management Techniques is a 4-hour online continuing education (CE/CEU) course that offers a collection of ready-to-use anxiety management tools that can be used in nearly all clinical settings and client diagnoses. Nearly every client who walks through a health professional’s door is experiencing some form of anxiety. Even if they are not seeking treatment for a specific anxiety disorder, they are likely experiencing anxiety as a side effect of other clinical issues. For this reason, a solid knowledge of anxiety management skills should be a basic component of every therapist’s repertoire. Clinicians who can teach practical anxiety management techniques have tools that can be used in nearly all clinical settings and client diagnoses. Anxiety management benefits the clinician as well, helping to maintain energy, focus, and inner peace both during and between sessions. The purpose of this course is to offer a collection of ready-to-use anxiety management tools. Course #40-12 | 2007 | 41 pages | 30 posttest questions

Mindfulness: The Healing Power of Compassionate Presence

6-Hour Online CE Course

Mindfulness: The Healing Power of Compassionate Presence is a 6-hour online continuing education (CE/CEU) course that provides you with an excellent understanding of exactly what mindfulness is, why it works, and how to use it. This course will give you the mindfulness skills necessary to work directly, effectively and courageously, with your own and your client’s life struggles. Compassion towards others starts with compassion towards self. Practicing mindfulness cultivates our ability to pay intentional attention to our experience from moment to moment. Mindfulness teaches us to become patiently and spaciously aware of what is going on in our mind and body without judgment, reaction, and distraction, thus inviting into the clinical process, the inner strengths and resources that help achieve healing results not otherwise possible. Bringing the power of mindful presence to your clinical practice produces considerable clinical impact in the treatment of anxiety, depression, PTSD, chronic pain, high blood pressure, fibromyalgia, colitis/IBS, and migraines/tension headaches. The emphasis of this course is largely experiential and will offer you the benefit of having a direct experience of the mindfulness experience in a safe and supportive fashion. You will utilize the power of “taking the client there” as an effective technique of introducing the mindful experience in your practice setting. As you will learn, the mindfulness practice has to be experienced rather than talked about. Course #60-75 | 2008 | 73 pages | 27 posttest questions

Professional Development ResourcesProfessional Development Resources is approved by the American Psychological Association (APA) to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. Professional Development Resources maintains responsibility for all programs and content. Professional Development Resources is also approved by the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC); the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB); the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA); the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA); the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR); the California Board of Behavioral Sciences; the Florida Boards of Social Work, Mental Health Counseling and Marriage and Family Therapy, Psychology & School Psychology, Dietetics & Nutrition, Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology, and Occupational Therapy Practice; the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker & MFT Board; the South Carolina Board of Professional Counselors & MFTs; and by theTexas Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists and State Board of Social Worker Examiners.

 

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Healthy Chill Pills

Can We Have Less Medication for Anxiety?

Medication & psychotherapy works, but can we do better?

By Mark Banschick, MD

Healthy Chill PillsAnxiety is fundamentally intrusive, interfering with going to sleep, preoccupying you while driving and preventing you from concentrating on what needs to be done. For many adults and their kids anxiety is always there, and if not, it’s always on the verge of being there.

It’s exhausting, and people want relief.

We live in a pill obsessed culture, so the reflex is to think medication.

Yet, other options are out there, and they often work.

Medications have a time and a place, but a little caution is not a bad thing. Other treatments range the gamut from diet changes, to meditation, to exercise to talk therapy. In addition, some treatments are based on better habits of living that will continue to help you years after the anxiety has abated. Sounds like a win win to me.

Healthy Chill Pills: Can We Have Less Medication for Anxiety?

According to the National Institute of Health, anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness among Americans, with some estimates reaching 40 million people. It’s generally accepted that effective treatment for most anxiety combines medication and psychotherapy. And, I agree. These protocals work and I’ve used them for years. The issue at hand is whether we can do better.

At Issue: So, are drug interventions always needed?

A common trap that people get into with medications in general, and especially psychiatric ones, is thinking that a pill will end their suffering. This may be the case if the ailment has one simple cause, for example, if an improperly treated wound becomes infected by bacteria, an antibiotic can often clear the situation up quickly with minimal side effects. However, anxiety and other psychological issues are more complex, and the effects of medication are less fully understood. And, with all the breakthroughs of modern science, the functioning of the most important organ in our body, the brain, is still oftentimes a mystery.

Example: The placebo effect of psychiatric medications is very high. This means that taking medications does help, but often the effect is less because of the pharmacological action of the agent, and more about your mind “believing” that the pill will work. The message here is that what makes drugs work, may be more complicated than you think. In fact it may be because of the way you think.

Most medications prescribed for anxiety disorders can be characterized as either antidepressants or benzodiazepines. Benzodiazepines can cause a relatively quick calm and are much appreciated by patients who are panicky. The antidepressants work more slowly but maintain a blood level every day so they have the advantage of muting some anxiety throughout the day. Side effects are varied. It is easy to get hooked on benzodiazapines because they work so quickly and can be quite effective. The antidepressants have a wide range of side effects, from rare cardiac issues, to weight gain or loss, to night sweats and more. Fortunately, most of the side effects of these meds are relatively benign, but who wants to be on medication if they don’t have to?

And here is the rub. In our society, the doctors, the patients, the managed care companies, and medical industry all push medications. It’s the easiest and, sometimes, the least costly of interventions. But does that make it good treatment?

Good research has shown that medication, especially combined with treatment from a competent therapist, can often give a person what they need to start down the road to recovery. But in the long run, the best way to manage symptoms of anxiety isn’t with a drug that might induce dependence or have other side effects.

Source: http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the-intelligent-divorce/201203/healthy-chill-pills

Related Online Continuing Education Courses:

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Posted by on March 27, 2012 in General

 

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When Reducing Anxiety, Perfect Solutions Don’t Exist

By Margarita Tartakovsky, MS

When Reducing Anxiety, Perfect Solutions Don’t ExistThe distorted stories we tell ourselves can amplify our anxiety — which, ironically can occur when we’re trying to reduce the worry, jitters and angst. One of the most damaging of distortions is the desire for perfection.

In his book Little Ways to Keep Calm and Carry On: Twenty Lessons for Managing Worry, Anxiety and Fear, author and professor Mark A. Reinecke, Ph.D, describes this desire as “the belief that there’s a best solution and that nothing less than the best is acceptable.”

Since we can’t predict how events will unfold, that perfect solution simply doesn’t exist — not to mention that the idea of perfection only puts added pressure on ourselves and sets us up for failure. As Reinecke writes, “When you expect perfection, the only guarantee is that you’ll be disappointed.”

A more helpful way to approach anxiety is by being flexible — which I know is tough because when you’re anxiety-prone, the last thing you probably feel comfortable with is variability. But with practice and a shift in perspective, you can get there.

Reinecke features a three-step process in his book to help readers find a variety of anxiety-alleviating strategies.

  1. To start figuring out which strategies can help, pinpoint a problem that’s bothering you. Then brainstorm at least 10 to 15 solutions (no erasing or crossing off just yet). “Be bold and creative,” Reinecke says. And consider how you’re feeling. Next to each solution, record the pros and cons along with the short- and long-term consequences. Lastly, look at your list and assign each solution a grade from A to F. Eliminate any of the Ds and Fs. After that, you’ve got a good-sized list of strategies.
  2. Try to be flexible if things don’t turn out according to your plan. As Reinecke writes, “Be open to a range of results, and maintain your sense that you are capable of handling a host of outcomes.”
  3. Remember that the only thing you can control is your perception. “Although you can’t control the future, you can control how you view it,” according to Reinecke.

Reinecke starts the chapter with a quote from Winston Churchill that serves as an important reminder for anxiety — and for life: “Success is the ability to go from one failure to another with no less enthusiasm.”

Source: http://psychcentral.com/blog/archives/2012/03/15/when-reducing-anxiety-perfect-solutions-dont-exist/

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Posted by on March 22, 2012 in General

 

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Anxiety: Practical Management Techniques

Anxiety: Practical Management Techniques

Click on image to view course webpage

Nearly every client who walks through a health professional’s door is experiencing some form of anxiety. Even if they are not seeking treatment for a specific anxiety disorder, they are likely experiencing anxiety as a side effect of other clinical issues. For this reason, a solid knowledge of anxiety management skills should be a basic component of every therapist’s repertoire. Clinicians who can teach practical anxiety management techniques have tools that can be used in nearly all clinical settings and client diagnoses. Anxiety management benefits the clinician as well, helping to maintain energy, focus, and inner peace both during and between sessions.

The purpose of this continuing education course is to offer a collection of ready-to-use anxiety management tools. 2007 | 41 pages | 30 posttest questions | Course #40-12

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Customer Reviews:

  • “I really liked the course. Very user friendly!” – Kris B. (Counselor)
  • “Thank you for the opportunity to access interesting subject for ceu’s. Your online class information and techniques are practical and easy to apply to the every day therapy.” – Cheryl B. (Occupational Therapist)
  • “Very concrete and helpful course that I can use personally and in my OT pediatric practice” – Anne E.(Occupational Therapist)
  • “I really enjoyed this course. It was a great review of major concepts and provided excellent opportunities to improve and expand best practices.” – Kathleen F. (Social Worker)

CE Credit: 4 Hours (0.4 CEUs)
Target Audience: Psychology Counseling Social-Work Occupational-Therapy Marriage-and-Family
Learning Level: Intermediate
Online Course: $56

Learning Objectives:

  1. Describe two natural bodily functions that serve as powerful and basic tools for anxiety management
  2. Distinguish between the use of anxiety management techniques for prevention and intervention
  3. List and define nine basic categories of anxiety management techniques
  4. Identify at least one specific exercise in each of the nine basic categories of anxiety management techniques
  5. Name ten anxiety management techniques that employ cognitive restructuring as their base
  6. Describe two anxiety management techniques that address the specific disorders of phobia and panic attack

About the Author:

Lisa M. Schab, MSW, LCSW, is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in private practice in Libertyville, Illinois. A graduate of Loyola University School of Social Work, Ms. Schab has specialized in anxiety and depression, blended families, and the treatment and prevention of eating problems and disorders. She has presented a number of professional training seminars and is the author of several books and continuing education courses, among them:

Professional Development Resources is recognized as a provider of continuing education by the following:
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Posted by on May 6, 2011 in General

 

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