Thursday, May 19, 2022

What Does Anxiety Feel Like In Your Stomach

Manage Stress In Your Life

Anxiety and Your Stomach

A nervous stomach could mean that youre simply in a nervous state. Are you undergoing a lot of stress lately? Do you have a big event, job interview, or nerve-wracking experience coming up? You could just be nervous about it, and it will pass.

If youre dealing with chronic stressful experiences and a lot of nervous stomach symptoms every day, on the other hand, finding time and ways to manage that stress is essential. Your nervous stomach could then subside.

Anxiety Can Be Managed

With so many people living with anxiety disorders, only about one-third of them are getting treatment. Remember, you cant just get over anxiety it is not just a state of mind. But you dont have to face your anxiety alone. Those who suffer from it all have a different level of care needed, but your doctor can help you determine the best course of action for you. You should not have to keep living each day with anxiety without the help and support you deserve.

How Is Age Related To Anxiety

Anxiety disorders may not always become worse as people get older, although the number of people who suffer from anxiety does. Anxiety grows increasingly frequent as people get older, with middle-aged individuals being the most affected. This might be due to a variety of causes, such as changes in the brain and neurological system as we age, as well as a greater likelihood of experiencing stressful life events that can induce anxiety.

The forms of anxiety that people experience might also differ depending on their age. Phobias are more frequent in youngsters, panic disorder is more common in middle-aged people, and generalized anxiety disorder is more common in older individuals. Well go through each of these age groups in detail below.

As for children, they experience anxiety in a different manner when compared to the adult. Anxiety can cause worry about the future, fear of being apart from loved ones, and fear of certain people, places, or things in children. Anxiety affects older children more than younger youngsters. Anxiety disorders affect about 1% of children aged 3 to 5 and 6% of children aged 6 to 11 years old.

Its vital to keep in mind that youngsters may struggle to communicate their worries verbally. Instead of talking about their fears, people may appear angry, experience bodily aches, or have difficulty sleeping.

  • A tense household situation

Also Check: What Causes Severe Stomach Pain After Eating

How Are Anxiety Disorders Treated

An anxiety disorder is like any other health problem that requires treatment. You cant will it away. Its not a matter of self-discipline or attitude. Researchers have made a lot of progress in the last few decades in treating mental health conditions. Your healthcare provider will tailor a treatment plan that works for you. Your plan may combine medication and psychotherapy.

Stomach Pain And Long

What does an anxiety stomach ache feel like ...

Because of the extra acid in your stomach and the changes to the way your body processes nutrients, the stomach pain from anxiety can be a problem if left untreated. Ulcers are just one example. Some people experience heartburn from anxiety, and others eat less often, giving their body fewer nutrients.

The stomach pain from anxiety and stress is rarely dangerous, but it is still important to treat it, because the effects on your long-term health when it is left untreated may be harder to manage.

Read Also: How Can You Make Your Stomach Smaller

Should I Be Getting Screened Regularly For Colon Cancer Or Other Gi Tract Cancers

As of 2021, the United States Preventative Services Task Force and major GI medical societies recommend that adults at average risk for colorectal cancer are regularly screened beginning at age 45.

People who have a family history of colorectal cancer or other GI tract cancers, including stomach or pancreas cancer, or a history of GI conditions like inflammatory bowel disease may need routine cancer screening earlier than age 45.

Talk your primary care physician about your risk and ask if you should get tested.

How To Handle Anxiety

Once youre well versed on what does anxiety feel like, there are multiple ways to handle anxiety. Some rely on therapy, others call on medication, and still others may involve natural remedies.

Your first step may be to deal with your anxiety via therapy or counseling. Read these University Health News posts for tips on how to find the right type of therapist:

Don’t Miss: What To Use For Stomach Ache

When Is Stomach Pain Most Likely To Occur

If you have anxiety, stomach pain can occur at any time even when no anxiety is present. However, many people experience stomach pain during panic attacks.

The exact link between an anxiety attack and stomach pain is not clear, other than the fact that during a panic attack, your body is under a considerable amount of stress, and your hormones are often on overdrive. Also, those with anxiety attacks are prone to hyperventilation, which may lead to symptoms that create stomach pain.

Why Does Stress Cause Stomach Pain Or Gi Discomfort

Handling Anxiety that Makes You Feel Sick to Your Stomach

We know through research there is a strong connection between our brain and our gut through the central nervous system. The enteric nervous system an out-branching of the central nervous system serves the GI tract, making a direct connection between our brain and gastrointestinal system. That connection can cause normal physiologic processes to be interpreted as painful under stressful or anxiety-provoking situations.

When were stressed, hormones and neurotransmitters are released in the body. This can negatively impact gut motility, or the way our intestines and stomach squeeze and move waste through the body. Also, stress can affect the delicate balance of bacteria in our gut, causing GI discomfort.

People experiencing chronic stress may also eat more or eat unhealthy foods with a higher amount of natural and artificial sugar that is poorly digested and causes GI distress. People may also smoke and drink more alcohol or caffeine than normal which can cause symptoms.

Don’t Miss: How To Get Rid Of Stomach Skin

Your Mood And Your Weight Are Affected

When you feel anxious, your brain floods your nervous system with hormones such as adrenaline and cortisol, to help you respond to a threat. Long-term anxiety and panic attacks can cause the brain to release these hormones constantly.

While helpful for the occasional high-stress event, long-term exposure to stress hormones can be more harmful. It can increase the frequency of symptoms such as headaches, dizziness, and depression. Also, long-term exposure to cortisol can contribute to weight gain.

Anxiety Isnt Always 24 Hours

Just because a person lives with an anxiety disorder, it doesnt mean they feel they effects of the disorder every minute of the day. Anxiety attacks can come right out of the blue, though many sufferers have triggers, and theres no set time frame for each attack. Everyones anxiety is different, with attacks that last from several minutes to several hours. Learning effective coping techniques can help decrease the amount of time in which an anxiety attack is felt.

Don’t Miss: How Do You Get Cramps In Your Stomach

What Happens If I Dont Get Treatment For My Child With An Anxiety Disorder

Getting your child help for an anxiety disorder can improve their development and self-esteem. But untreated anxiety disorders can harm:

  • Family relationships.
  • School performance.
  • Social functioning.

Your child may also end up with more serious mental and physical health problems. Fortunately, there are several treatments for anxiety disorders. The right treatment can help your child manage their symptoms and feel their best.

Who Can Diagnose Anxiety Disorders

Anxiety Yellow Stool

If your provider finds no signs of physical illness, they may refer you to a psychiatrist or psychologist. These mental health professionals specialize in diagnosing and treating mental illnesses. They may use specially designed interview and assessment tools to figure out if you have an anxiety disorder. Typically, the provider bases a diagnosis on:

  • Your reported symptoms, including how intense they are and how long they last.
  • Discussion of how the symptoms interfere with your daily life.
  • The providers observation of your attitude and behavior.

Providers also consult the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders . The American Psychiatric Association publishes the DSM-5. Its the standard reference manual for diagnosing mental illnesses.

Read Also: How To Treat Stomach Cramps At Home

Here Are Two Signs Your Abdominal Pain Could Be Mental

Whether your stomach cramps strike every time you have to take a flight or before big work presentations, it could be a sign that youre so stressed its affecting your gut.

Theres a clear connection between the brain and our emotions and how our body feels, says Sperling. Realizing that your abdominal pain always crops up around moments of fear, stress, or anxiety can help you figure out that your emotions are behind the discomfort.

If you already know you have anxiety but are having a hard time managing this symptom, talk to your doctor or therapist to see if any tweaks in your treatment may help. If youre not sure your abdominal pain is connected with changes in your emotions, consider keeping a journal for a few weeks to chart how you feel and how your pain comes and goes in response.

In the event that your GI issues do seem tied with mental health concerns like anxiety, a mental health professional may be able to help you through methods like cognitive behavioral therapy . This form of therapy aims to help people identify and change unhelpful thoughts and behaviors to live healthier, happier lives. If youre interested in trying it, heres a guide on how to find an affordable therapist.

While undeniably horrible in the moment, panic attacks are highly treatable with medication, therapy such as CBT, and coping mechanisms like deep breathing, according to the Mayo Clinic. See your doctor or therapist for help if you think youre having panic attacks.

Your Stomach Is All Sorts Of Messed Up

Anxiety really hits the G.I. system hard, says Dr. Potter. People with anxiety may notice general stomach pain, constipation, diarrhea, or other kinds of G.I. distress, she explains.

A lot of this may boil down to what experts call the gut-brain axis, which is a communication system between your brain and the enteric nervous system that governs your digestion. This connection is why stress can so easily mess with your poop. Theres also the fact that anxiety-induced lifestyle choices like eating foods that dont agree with you or not exercising can affect your digestion as well.

Don’t Miss: How To Lose Extra Skin On Stomach

The Subtle Signs That Someone Might Be Struggling With Anxiety

Anxiety is a very normal part of being human, and we all experience it on some level from time to time. Its our inbuilt early warning system that has been designed by evolution to warn us when there might be trouble, and ready us to deal with it. Sometimes though, the early warning system works a little too hard, switching on too often when theres just no need.

Anxiety can be thought of as the workings of a strong healthy brain thats being a little overprotective. Its not crazy and its not troubled. Its overprotective. Like anything overprotective, anxiety can be intrusive, confusing and exhausting. For some people, there may be no outward clues that they are anxious at all. Their symptoms will be managed beautifully and will have minimal, if any, intrusion into their lives. For others, anxiety can be debilitating.

The stats on anxiety are staggering. Anxiety is so common, that if you arent experiencing it yourself, its very likely that someone you care about is. Bupa has created an infographic that illustrates some of the statistics. Find it in the Blue Room here: Feeling Anxious? Youre Not Alone.

Here are some subtle signs to watch out for. If you see them happening, dont make a big deal of things. For the person youre with, they would have been likely living with it for a while. Just be there and know that you dont need to fix anything.

Anxiety Isnt Only In Your Head

#LetsTalkAboutIt: What Does Anxiety Feel Like?

If you have anxiety, you might frequently feel worried, nervous, or afraid about ordinary events. These feelings can be upsetting and difficult to manage. They can also make daily life a challenge.

Anxiety can also cause physical symptoms. Think about a time when you felt anxious. Maybe your hands were sweaty or your legs were shaky. Your heart rate might have sped up. You could have felt sick to your stomach.

You might have linked these symptoms to your nervousness. But maybe you werent sure why you felt unwell.

Most people experience anxiety on occasion. Anxiety can be serious or turn into a disorder if it lasts for a long time, causes significant distress, or interferes with your life in other ways.

Types of anxiety include:

Some types of anxiety have unique symptoms specific to the fears linked to the anxiety. In general, though, anxiety disorders share many physical symptoms.

Read on to learn more about anxietys physical symptoms and how they can affect you.

Anxiety can have physical symptoms that affect health and daily life.

Specific types of anxiety might have additional physical symptoms.

If youre having a panic attack, you might:

  • fear that youre going to die
  • have trouble breathing or feel as if youre choking
  • have numb or tingling sensations in parts of your body
  • have chest pain
  • feel lightheaded, dizzy, or as if you might pass out
  • feel overheated or have chills

Recommended Reading: How To Get Rid Of Double Stomach

What Part Of Your Body Feels Anxiety

Many people feel anxiety in their chest, but it can show up anywhere.

Some people feel it in their heads, neck, stomach, or even legs.

The truth is that you can feel your anxiety in any part of your body.

When you feel anxious, its normal to feel your muscles tighten up.

You might also have butterflies in your stomach or be nauseous.

How Does Anxiety Affect Your Body

Anxiety affects your body in different ways that are defined as anxiety symptoms. When you feel overly anxious, many people feel a constriction in their pulmonary and respiratory systems, noticing an increase in their heart rate, a heaviness in the chest, or difficulty breathing. Others manifest their stress in their digestive system, with nausea, indigestion, stomach cramping, diarrhea, and sometimes vomiting. The severity of the discomfort can range.

Anxiety is a natural response to danger or a threat. It happens when the brain releases neurotransmitters to prepare the body for fight or flight. When some of these neurotransmitters get into the digestive tract, they upset the gut microbiome, and this can cause stomach symptoms that include nausea. During a moment of high anxiety, you might feel just a bit queasy, like that butterflies in your stomach feeling you might have before giving a public presentation or going on a job interview. This kind of nausea may be brief, while other instances of anxiety-related nausea can make you totally sick to your stomach. Your upset stomach churns so much that you have to make a dash for the bathroom, even reaching the point of dry heaving or vomiting.

Also Check: What Causes Your Stomach To Get Big

Who Is At Risk For Anxiety Disorders

A mix of genetic and environmental factors can raise a persons risk for developing anxiety disorders. You may be at higher risk if you have or had:

  • Certain personality traits, such as shyness or behavioral inhibition feeling uncomfortable with, and avoiding, unfamiliar people, situations or environments.
  • Stressful or traumatic events in early childhood or adulthood.
  • Family history of anxiety or other mental health conditions.
  • Certain physical conditions, including thyroid problems and heart arrhythmias .

Anxiety disorders occur more often in women. Researchers are still studying why that happens. It may come from womens hormones, especially those that fluctuate throughout the month. The hormone testosterone may play a role, too men have more, and it may ease anxiety. Its also possible that women are less likely to seek treatment, so the anxiety worsens.

Related Stories From Yourtango:

What Anxiety Feels Like &  Why It Happens

If this sounds like you, try a weighted blanket to help soothe you to sleep. If that doesn’t work, try a breathing technique or other wind-down routines that can help ease anxiety.

Ultimately, you should work with your mental healthcare provider to create a treatment plan that will help relieve your anxiety and help you get a good night’s sleep.

Christina Stiehl is the Fitness Editor for PopSugar. Follow her .

This article was originally published at PopSugar. Reprinted with permission from the author.

More content from PopSugar:

Recommended Reading: How To Heal Your Stomach Lining

What Are The Layers Of Stomach

The stomach is made of these 5 layers:

  • Mucosa. This is the first and innermost layer or lining. …
  • Submucosa. This second layer supports the mucosa. …
  • Muscularis. The third layer is made of thick muscles. …
  • Subserosa. This layer contains supporting tissues for the serosa.
  • Serosa. This is the last and outermost layer.

What Is An Anxiety Disorder

An anxiety disorder is a type of mental health condition. If you have an anxiety disorder, you may respond to certain things and situations with fear and dread. You may also experience physical signs of anxiety, such as a pounding heart and sweating.

Its normal to have some anxiety. You may feel anxious or nervous if you have to tackle a problem at work, go to an interview, take a test or make an important decision. And anxiety can even be beneficial. For example, anxiety helps us notice dangerous situations and focuses our attention, so we stay safe.

But an anxiety disorder goes beyond the regular nervousness and slight fear you may feel from time to time. An anxiety disorder happens when:

  • Anxiety interferes with your ability to function.
  • You often overreact when something triggers your emotions.
  • You cant control your responses to situations.

Anxiety disorders can make it difficult to get through the day. Fortunately, there are several effective treatments for anxiety disorders.

Also Check: How To Tighten Stomach Muscles

Popular Articles
Related news