It is not uncommon to use alcohol to calm anxiety. However, drinking alcohol over time or in large quantities can lead to higher levels of anxiety and stress.
It is easy for anxious people to drink too much at once and develop alcoholism.
According to studies of anxiety disorders and alcohol addiction, these relationships can be dangerous and self-perpetuating.
In this article, we discuss the relationship between alcohol and anxiety, its dangers, and how to deal with anxiety and alcohol on a daily basis.
Can alcohol cause anxiety?
Research shows that there is a relationship between alcohol consumption and anxiety. Anxiety disorders and alcohol use disorders (AUD) often coexist.
This link is because regular alcohol consumption can interfere with neurotransmitters in the brain that are responsible for positive mental health.
According to a 2017 review of 63 studies, cutting back on alcohol improves both depression and anxiety.
The review authors found that reducing alcohol consumption can improve people’s self-confidence, physical and mental quality of life and social functioning.
In many cases, it is not clear whether alcohol causes anxiety or whether anxiety makes alcohol consumption easier.
According to several animal studies, people who drink alcohol as children may be more prone to anxiety than adults, suggesting a causal link.
Can alcohol make anxiety worse?
A 2017 study found that when researchers measured clinical anxiety, people with AUD had higher levels of anxiety when stressed than people without AUD.
Feelings of anxiety and nervousness are common in people with AUD. People with AUD may have problems with alcohol withdrawal, including physical symptoms of anxiety, such as a fast heart rate, nausea, and tremors.
Can alcohol help reduce anxiety?
At first, drinking alcohol can help a person relax. It can make social situations easier and problems seem less scary.
Early effects may include safe sources of alcohol:
- Improved disposition
- to worry
- Less protection
- increasing self-confidence
However, these positive feelings are short-lived and carry risks.
Short-term dangers of alcohol can include:
- Strong emotions
- feeling forgotten
- poor eyesight
- Lack of coordination
Long-term risks of reliable sources of alcohol can include:
- Liver and pancreas damage
- A wound is created
- They have heart disease
- respiratory tract and other infections
Lifestyle changes and treatment options for anxiety
Lifestyle changes people can make to reduce anxiety include:
- Enough sleep
- regular sport
- Reduce your caffeine intake
- Practice relaxation techniques such as meditation, yoga and massage
- Find an activity that requires time to think
If the person needs additional help, the doctor may prescribe the following:
- Antidepressants such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) or tricyclics.
- For short-term use of benzodiazepines due to the risk of addiction.
People can also benefit from counseling, which can be in the form of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) or interpersonal therapy, etc.
Lifestyle modification and treatment strategies for alcohol abuse
Here are some lifestyle changes people can try:
- Identify possible causes
- Do not drink alcohol when you are tired or stressed
- Find fun exercises
- Talk to friends and family
- Remove alcohol from the home or office
- Eat a healthy diet
- Join support groups like Alcoholics Anonymous (AA).
- Participate in therapies such as cognitive behavioral therapy
- Visit an addiction center
- Learn ways to relax
In addition, doctors can prescribe medications from reliable sources, including:
- Disulfiram (Antibuse).
- Naltrexone (Vivitrol, Revia and Naltril).
- Acomproset (Camprosate) 1.1.2 Regeneration
Today, the Internet also provides ways to track drinking habits, set goals, and prevent relapse.
There are apps for mobile devices, such as the Addiction Improvement Health Support System (A-Chase).
When you call the doctor
Alcoholism and depression often go hand in hand, and it’s important to see your doctor for the following symptoms:
- Feeling anxious or angry
- A sense of imminent danger or fear
- Increased heart rate
- Heavy breathing, sweating or cold
- I get tired all the time
- Sleep disturbance test
- Failure to concentrate
According to another reliable source, the signs and symptoms of AUD:
- A strong desire or need to drink
- Expect power outages
- Take more to get the results you want
- Alcohol disrupts life at work or at home
- Offer fun activities before drinking
- Being in a dangerous state under the influence of alcohol
- Suffering from withdrawal symptoms such as tremors, difficulty sleeping, anxiety, depression, weight gain, diarrhea, and confusion
In addition to alcohol, people can better manage almost all forms of anxiety through a combination of lifestyle changes, medications, and therapy.
Seeing is difficult for people with AUD. AUD is a chronic condition with many psychological and physical effects.
According to the AA, 27% of its 6,000 members have been sober for at least one year and 22% have been sober for more than 20 years. Also, success rates are difficult to record because relapse and treatment are difficult.
If a person suffers from alcoholism or anxiety, he may consult a physician for the best treatment for these problems.