Anxiety attacks can be awful. In fact, many unfamiliar with the symptoms of an attack think they’re having a more major health issue; that’s how badly an anxiety attack can affect a person. To help people worried about attacks, we’ve put together a list of 6 anxiety attack triggers. By keeping aware of what triggers anxiety attacks, you can better help to avoid them.
Table of Contents
Trigger #1: Work and Finances
Since the pandemic hit, as many as 63 percent of Americans have been living paycheck to paycheck. If a major health or car emergency were to hit, those people would struggle to get by.
This can cause a huge pressure to build up, as you might worry about yourself or your family. In a similar way, stress at work can cause the same sort of anxiety.
After all, if you need your job to pay the bills, any sign your job may be in jeopardy can send pangs of worry.
We often imagine worst-case scenarios, even when the reality is most minor issues at work don’t matter that much. Firing an employee is often a big decision with a lot of red tape. Most employers don’t do it over small details.
Trigger #2: Relationship Trouble
You almost certainly have people in your life whose opinion and happiness you care about. One common trigger for panic attacks is problems in those relationships. (It should also be noted we mean all relationships, not just romantic ones.)
Things can get even more stressful if things truly can’t be repaired. Sometimes friendships end and it is hard to move on. That feeling of being “stuck” between wanting someone in your life and knowing you cannot have them, can cause the symptoms of anxiety attacks to start bubbling up.
While it’s okay to grieve lost relationships, try not to panic. Life continues and you can find others who will be meaningful to you. It isn’t easy to move on but things will get better.
Trigger #3: Moving or Other Major Life Changes
Major change, even if it logically is good, can cause us stress. Humans are somewhat animals of habit. We grow used to our life being a certain way and are put off when things are altered.
Moving is a common trigger of anxiety because you grow so used to certain surroundings. Having them change can make you feel out of place, even when you’re home.
Changing jobs can have a similar effect. You grow used to a routine and suddenly have a new one. For many people, making more money or even enjoying work more doesn’t immediately counteract how strange the new workplace can feel.
The good news is after a few months, most changes start to feel like the new normal. We also encourage you to learn more about other options if you’d like to explore more ways to help reduce anxiety.
Trigger #4: Health Issues
Health issues are a major cause of anxiety for many people. This is a bit complex to discuss because there are really two triggers that fall under this category.
The first is minor health issues. If you feel a bit sick, it’s easy to panic and think it’s something worse.
If it helps, think of your health as a numbers game. Odds are that things will be okay and you just need to talk with a doctor. They can help you figure out what’s wrong and what to do next.
That said, sometimes people find out they really do have serious health issues. Even if you’re not terminally ill, you might have reduced mobility or physical function. These changes are sometimes temporary, but not always.
If these issues trigger anxiety, we recommend talking to mental health professionals. While a good idea for any type of anxiety, these issues can be hard to deal with on one’s own. It can do a great deal of good to talk to an expert, who may also be able to give you medicine for anxiety if needed.
Trigger #5: Traumatic Events
One of the worst things about traumatic events is they don’t always leave you. They can sit in your mind, making you relive them. In some cases, the memories can be so vivid it’s like you’re almost there again.
This can cause a host of mental health problems, anxiety included. It’s not uncommon for those involved in trauma to develop anxiety disorders or other complications.
Dealing with trauma isn’t easy and is best done with the help of experts. Mental health experts can help you work through that trauma and, as we discussed above, may also be able to prescribe medication to help too.
Trigger #6: Genetics
Some people are predisposed towards anxiety and anxiety attacks. It isn’t fair but it is the truth. If you feel anxious, especially without much of a reason, it could be your genes.
The good news is that you can still do things to help deal with that anxiety. Many of the usual techniques can still help, from meditation to eating right to seeing a mental health professional.
You can’t change your genes but you can engage in healthy habits to fight back against anxiety. Being more likely to experience anxiety doesn’t mean you are doomed to it.
Fight Back Against Your Anxiety Attack Triggers
Anxiety attack triggers don’t have to control you. If you keep aware of them, you can also stay mindful of the sort of thinking that will worsen your anxiety.
You may not control an aspect of your life but it also doesn’t have to control you. Moreover, you can adopt healthy habits to further keep anxiety at bay.
If you liked this article, we have more like it! Explore our health section for more medical content or check out one of our other sections for something different.