Home Anxiety 4 Major Contributors to Anxiety and How to Treat Them on Your...

4 Major Contributors to Anxiety and How to Treat Them on Your Own


Anxiety is your body and mind’s natural response to stressful situations. Think about the fear you feel when you’re going to a job interview or giving a speech in front of a large audience. For most people, anxiety is minor – acting as an alert to motivate us or warn us of impending danger. An anxiety disorder, on the other hand, involves unhelpful anxiety that is overwhelming and frightening. We know a lot of factors can lead to an anxiety disorder. In fact, research shows having a close relative with an anxiety disorder increases your own chances of developing one.

But we don’t know if this is genetic or if it’s learned behavior from our partners or other family members as we grow up. Let’s take a look at the four major contributors to anxiety and how to treat them on your own.

1.A Traumatic Childhood

Difficult or traumatic experiences that occur during adolescence can lead to anxiety disorders later in life. Things like physical or emotional abuse, parental abandonment, neglect, and other harmful situations are huge factors when it comes to developing anxiety disorders.

Treating this contributor on your own:

Consider going to therapy, and if that’s not doable, make sure you give yourself time to heal. Don’t try to force the healing process. Instead, be patient when it comes to dealing with difficult emotions. Put time and energy into dealing with whatever you’re feeling.  

2. Drug and/or Alcohol Addiction

Substance abuse, whether involving recreational drugs or alcohol, is commonly associated with the onset and exacerbation of anxiety. Unfortunately, many individuals who end up with anxiety also self-medicate with drugs and/or alcohol – making the situation worse.

Treating this contributor on your own:

When it comes to substance abuse, it’s vital to reach out for support whenever possible. Going through withdrawals alone can be dangerous, so try to find a local treatment center to help you undergo the process of recovery.

3. Other Mental Health Disorders

For individuals with other mental health disorders, such as depression, an anxiety disorder develops as a result of the initial mental health disorder. This is because depression often creates feelings of despair and hopelessness – lowering energy levels and resulting in social isolation. This, in turn, creates a feeling of anxiety.

Treating this contributor on your own:

Do your best to continue participating in activities you enjoy and spending time with loved ones. When you’re suffering from mental illness, it’s more important than ever to stay connected and in touch with those you care about. Anxiety, like many other conditions, is harder to treat if you wait, so get help early.

4. Current Life Stressors

If you’re going through stress in your life, anxiety disorders can develop as a result. Things like exhaustion, long hours at work, financial struggles, losing a loved one, housing problems, and other issues can take a toll on anyone’s mental health.

Treating this contributor on your own:

When you’re going through a stressful time, it’s important to take as much time as possible to focus on your well-being. Take some time to do things you enjoy – from taking a walk outside to having a coffee with a good friend. Little things can add up when it comes to self-care.

How Do You Know If You Have an Anxiety Disorder?

As mentioned, many individuals feel anxious from time-to-time. But how do you know if you have an anxiety disorder? While it’s important to talk with your medical professional to be certain, here are some common signs and symptoms:

  • Feeling nervous or restless
  • An increased heart rate
  • Rapid breathing (hyperventilation)
  • An impending sense of doom or panic
  • Profuse sweating
  • A trembling or weak sensation
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Difficulty controlling or rationalizing worry
  • Avoiding social situations

If you’re worried your anxiety results from an underlying condition, see your doctor if:

  • Your anxiety or worry is hard to control and impacting your day-to-day life.
  • You feel depressed as a result of isolation due to anxiety.
  • You worry your anxiety is linked to a physical health issue.
  • You have uncontrollable suicidal thoughts and/or behaviors.
  • You feel like your anxiety is interfering with your work or relationship.


Anxiety is a common part of life. Most of us feel anxious from time-to-time, but those with anxiety disorders feel intense anxiety when it comes to everyday situations. This feeling is beyond the individual’s control, and more often than not, impacts their life negatively. If you experience episodes of sudden intense anxiety that reach a peak within minutes, let your doctor know you may be experiencing panic attacks alongside your anxiety.

When it comes to your mental health, it’s always better to be safe than sorry. Talk to your doctor as soon as you notice a negative impact so you can get help as soon as possible.