Thursday, April 11, 2013

What to Do {Naturally} When Anxiety Strikes

I am so humbled and honored to be walking this out with so many of you who have shared your stories with me since my posts earlier this week.  {How I Say NO to B.O. Naturally and You are Not Alone – Why Don’t My Adrenals Work?}

I have learned that my PTSD causes me to have a low level of adrenal rush(fight or flight) - anxiety every single day.  I never really looked at it that way until speaking with my EMDR therapist on Tuesday.   I shared many emotions that race through my mind during several situations and what it all came down to is fear (it’s a word with many strong emotions attached to it for me and I’m thankful to finally have a safe place to express them and let them go).   (Again, please don’t try to show me that all it will take to heal is more faith.  That is so insensitive and truly not a loving thing to say when you don’t know me or the millions who suffer with this on a daily basis.  PTSD and many anxiety disorders are nothing to downplay, nor are they easy to live with day in and day out.  I do believe that some how, some way, God is going to use this for my good and I hope to experience that sooner than later. Until I do, I keep pressing in and on living this life as best I can!!!) 

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I felt a sense of relief putting a word to it and yet, the negative self talk started right back up.  I spent most of the afternoon feeling very vulnerable after sharing so much with total strangers around the world, and putting my heart out there like I did.   That is until I came home to so many emails and comments filled with gratitude due to my transparency.   I wish I could say that made me feel better, but all it did was leave me feeling so helpless knowing so many are out there suffering much worse than me and still can’t find the proper medical team to help them.  Many shared that they feel so alone.  Boy oh boy can I relate to that!  This is not an easy journey to be on and too many place shame and blame on those who live with any type of anxiety disorder or challenges.  I am fine feeling your pain, because it made mine seem that much more valid as well.  It made me wish we could all gather in a room and just love on one another.  Which is what I happen to do best, encourage others and love them right where they are.  So no worries friends, share away!  You won’t get judged here and I will do my best to meet you in that quiet place where your heart longs to feel welcome and loved.  One day I’m going to bring that dream alive and we will all meet in the perfect place!  I have begun to pray over every single person who felt safe enough to share their struggles and for those of you just reading along.  Know that my heart breaks for every single one of you and you are truly NOT alone.   80% of the population today is living with some form of adrenal stress, fatigue, or shut down (and anxiety is almost always associated with each one).

My promise to each of you who are following along as I continue to write about my healing journey, is that I will do everything I can to share all that I have learned over the last 10+ years of my own research, as well as, what has been the most successful in regards to healing my adrenals and PTSD.

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These are the symptoms of an anxiety attack episode

  • Hyperventilation
  • Heart palpitation (increase in heartbeat)
  • Hot flashes or chills
  • Feeling detached or unreal
  • Nausea or stomach crams
  • Sweating
  • Chest discomfort or pain
  • Choking sensation
  • Dizziness
  • Feeling of losing control, going crazy; or fear of dying
  • Trouble breathing
  • Surge of overwhelming panic
  • Trembling or shaking

PLEASE DO NOT COME OFF ANY MEDICATION WITHOUT CONSULTING YOUR PHYSICIAN TO ENSURE YOU DO IT SAFELY.   If you need to remain on medication then use the following to help you feel even better every single day! 

Now that you know what might happen during an anxiety attack, let’s talk about how you can get through them naturally:

  1. Practice breathing in slowly and deeply –even though it seems impossible during an attack, breathing is the quickest way to help slow your body down and get your heart rate back to normal.  Fill your lungs and breathe out slowly.   Let your body release the stress as you breathe out.   Close your eyes if you can do safely and keep breathing in and out slowly until you feel your body relaxing. 
  2. Practice positive self talk – remind yourself that you are “OK” and that this attack won’t last forever.  They usually only last 30 minutes and the most intense is the first 10 minutes.  Don’t watch the time during the attack.  Simply keep reminding yourself that “you are OK” and that “you can get through this.”  NO beating yourself up or saying anything negative to yourself during or after any attack.
  3. Practice reaching out to those you can trust with your heart and share what you are experiencing to help you face what is causing you the greatest amount of fear or worry.   When you have a handle on what worries you the most it loses its control over you.  
  4. Practice living day by day and moment by moment on the hard days.  Learn how to let things go that are NOT important to be done right now and do what has to be done.   If list keeping stresses you out, then don’t keep them.  But if keeping a list of your daily tasks will help alleviate stress in your life, then start keeping them and checking things off as you get things done!   I truly believe letting tomorrow worry about itself is one of the wisest pieces of advice I have taken from the Bible.  I can only control what is right in front of me, right now.   I can plan for tomorrow, but I can’t promise it will happen the way I hope, or desire.  So the here and now is the best way to go and live! 
  5. Practice prayer and meditation – there is tons of scientific evidence that meditating and praying daily will help lower your levels of stress.
  6. Practice being grateful every single day!  Count your blessings and keep counting them when you are feeling the most stressed out.  Look for the beauty all around you.  I promise it is every where!

  1. Practice some form of exercise every single day.   Yes, get your body moving.  Especially when you are feeling the most unsettled.  Exercise produces endorphins which help relax the body.   Many practice yoga because it forces you to be completely in tune with your breath and body at the same time.  Recently I read an article about how one man totally cured his severe anxiety disorder by simply changing his diet and doing a strict routine of yoga at least 3 times a week.
  2. Drink enough water each day.  I can’t stress that enough!!!  Just do it!  No excuses.  Add any EO that you enjoy to your water throughout the day to keep it refreshing and never boring!  Not to mention the amazing healing properties of Spark Naturals will benefit you greatly!
  3. Stop eating JUNK food and drinks loaded with sugar.   Learn everything you can about clean eating.  Our family has been eating grain, sugar, and dairy free now for 8 weeks.  It has been a HUGE blessing to each of us and I feel the most grounded eating this way!  If you are experiencing adrenal fatigue/stress/shut down – please do NOT begin a juicing cleanse or fast until your body has begun to heal.   Juicing is very healthy, just not when the body is fighting to remain balanced.  If you want to cleanse your body, simply follow a program like paleo, etc. or try my 30 Day Grain Free Living(go back through all of the posts to see our menu, tips, and how to begin doing it the right way). Get rid of all the processed foods from your diet.  You will begin to feel and think better – and you will lose weight. 
  4. GET ENOUGH SLEEP EACH DAY!!!!   It is vital that everyone who struggles with any adrenal stress and anxiety get enough sleep each night.  The nervous system can’t calm down or heal without the proper amount of sleep each night.  Sleep lost, is simply LOST SLEEP! 

*Updated to add #11

11.  Please clear your busy schedule.   If your schedule has your running non stop all day without any time to do most of the above, then you are bringing on extra stress everyday.   Clear your children’s schedules.  They don’t need to be going all day long and learning the same behavior you are teaching them by example.  Slow down your life and it will be a huge blessing to your entire family.   Make time to eat together as a family.  Make time to be together doing fun activities that don’t cause you to be stretched thin.  Make time to curl up and watch movies together that are FUNNY.  Laughter is healing to your entire body, especially your soul!

One of the greatest blessings to my healing journey has been adding Spark Naturals essential oils into my daily routine. 

Why?  Because they work are easy to use, without any side effects!!!!  They are 100% certified organic, pure and therapeutic grade…which means they are safe to ingest!!!  BONUS!  Seriously, these oils have helped me in more ways than anything else I have tried over the last 10 years.  Maybe I’m experiencing so much success with them because I have done the work to get as healthy as I could in every other way – eating a clean diet, drinking enough water each day, etc.  I’m still working on sleeping better – that is a tough one with my PTSD, hormone surges, and how my mind just struggles to rest.   I started using dream sleep Blend on my feet each night two weeks ago and it is helping me fall asleep.  Which is a huge praise for me!   

Spark Natural Essential Oil Anxiety Treatments (one of my favorite EO blends is one I made for anxiety – I call it Be Calm Blend)

 

NOTE:  The Sub-occipital Triangle according to Dr. David Hill, this is where essential oils for tension headaches and stress (Relief Headache Blend or Jeddy's Blend) should be applied. This region is called the sub-occipital triangle. It allows pure plant essences (Spark Naturals EO’s) to penetrate straight into the brain and blood vessels that are along the spine.

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  • Rub Bliss Calming Blend on your feet nightly.   Just look at all the areas of your body that you can touch and aide in the healing process simply by massaging EO’s onto your feet.    God surely made NO mistake when He created us – our bodies are amazing and we must treat with nothing but total respect!

 

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Additional Help:

  1. Rub 3-4 drops of Bergamot Oil and Roman Chamomile Oil on back of neck & temples.
  2. Diffuse Bliss Calming Blend, Lavender Oil, and/or Zen Grounding Oil Blend in the air
  3. Have the following “Spine Therapy” done once a week:
  • First apply coconut oil (olive oil can be substituted) along the length of the spine.
  • Then, Drop any one or all of the following Spark Naturals essential oils down the spine:   Starting with Oregano, then Thyme, Basil, Wintergreen, Zen Grounding, Rosemary, Lavender… and end with Peppermint
  • Hot compress for 15 minutes, then massage into skin.

SOME EXTRA EO TIPS:

If you are new to using essential oils read the following posts to learn how much, when, and how often to use them?

  1. Essential Oils:  How Much?  How Often?
  2. How to Use Essential Oils with 4 Easy Applications
  3. NEVER EVER put any essential oil into your eyes no matter what someone claims it will do for your vision.   Dr. Papas said the following:  “If anyone EVER tells you to put essential oils in your eyes please rebuke them soundly!! And what they are recommending here is not a small concentration. If you put 30 drops of essential oils in 2 tablespoons that's about a 10% concentration!! And one of the oils is rosemary for God's sake, an oil high in camphor and 1,8-cineole!! Not to mention cypress and frankincense which are some of the best solvents out there with their high levels of monoterpenes. Please people, remember that essential oils are EXCELLENT organic solvents and they will easily dissolve mucous membranes. I cannot imagine what kind of damage this could do to someone's eyes over time, if not immediately.”  Essential Oil University was Founded in 1999 by Dr. Robert S. Pappas, EOU is an educational/informational institution dedicated to essential oil production, chemistry and uses.   READ THIS TO TRULY UNDERSTAND THE DANGER IN PUTTING ANY EO INTO YOUR EYES.

Many people ask me about The Difference Between Essential Oils & Carrier Oil (Thanks Rebecca for this awesome explanation!)

Carrier oils are used to dilute essential oils for topical application.

Carrier oils actually carry essential oils into the skin...okay now the word "carrier" makes much more sense, doesn't it?

Essential oils are distilled or pressed from the roots, leaves, bark and rinds of plants and citrus fruit.  Essential oils have a strong aroma and for the most part evaporate

Carrier oils are pressed from the fatty part of botanicals and they don't evaporate or influence with a strong aroma like essential oils do.

Fractionated Coconut Oil {FCO}

I use this carrier oil exclusively!  FCO simply means that the fat has been spun out of it, afterwards you're left with only the medium triglycerides.  Fractionated coconut oil is a highly stable, tasteless, odorless carrier oil, it penetrates the skin and takes your essential oils to a greater depth to help soothe and heal various health issues!

How to Use Carrier Oil

  • 6 to 10 drops of FCO + essential oils:  enough coverage to massage into major joints.
  • 1 teaspoon + essential oils: good coverage for the bottoms of both feet
  • 1 tablespoon + essential oils:  good coverage for application to limbs and back/spine.
  • For Children under 6 yr: Cut dose of essential oils to half and dilute at a 1 to 1 ratio.  (1 drop EO to 1 drop carrier oil).
  • Fractionated Coconut Oil is available from Spark Naturals {HERE} ...and from Amazon {HERE}

I truly hope that everything I’m sharing is helping you to see that what you are experiencing does NOT have to define you or steal your ability to enjoy life!    Take a deep breath, begin doing the hard work to heal your body from the inside out.   Grab a hold of your faith and trust in the power of love to heal you!    YOU CAN USE CODE:  jillbewell for 10% off your order

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Health Disclaimer: Although, Jill Samter is in love with essential oils and natural living alternatives, please remember I am not a certified nutritionist, medical doctor, or practitioner of any kind. I am not licensed to counsel anyone in medical matters nor may I be held responsible for any course of action that you choose in regards to your own health or that of your family. Please remember that what I am sharing is the result of my personal experiences, but may not necessarily be the right course of action for you. I am an advocate of becoming informed, knowledgeable and responsible for one’s own health. My hope is that what I share may encourage you to start a journey in doing your own research, and seeking out the opinions of professionals or others that you trust.

“The statements contained in this post have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The information contained here is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Suggestions and ideas presented in this post are for information only and should not be interpreted as medical advice, meant for diagnosing illness, or for prescriptive purposes. Readers are encouraged to consult their health care provider before beginning any cleanse, diet, detoxification program, or any supplement regimen. The information in this post is not to be used to replace the services or instructions of a physician or qualified health care practitioner.”

PAID ENDORSEMENT DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Thank you for your support.

2 comments:

  1. These are all excellent ways to help reduce stress and anxiety. Also, I recommend that when you're having an attack, try to do something to get your mind off of it. I have to get out of bed and do something. Usually, get on the computer and read articles; talk to my husband; something. Thank you for the suggestions on what oils to use. I am a newbie on these oils :)

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  2. Thank you so much! I have OCD and it has reared it's ugly head, lately (a lot of recent stressors). I always feel on the verge of N anxiety attack, but refuse to go back on the meds. I always feel worse when I come off them! Anyways, this page has now been bookmarked. Thanks again.

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