Anxiety – the feeling of panic, worry, fear and dread. It’s a feeling which holds a strong grip on a very large population. In fact, Anxiety Centre reports that approximately 30 percent of the adult population between the ages of 18 and 54 are affected by anxiety disorders in the US alone.
Regarding the workplace and the educational system, anxiety has been reported to hold its grip on 41 percent of employees from a range of industries, and more than half of college students seek help for their anxiety issues.
Anxiety has indeed become the number one mental health issue in North America and it has been estimated that people with an anxiety disorder are 3-5 times more likely to visit the doctor and 6 times more likely to be hospitalized for psychiatric disorders than non-sufferers.
How did anxiety become so prevalent in our society?
“The rise of technology, overly-protective parenting and “exam-factory” schooling are among the reasons psychologists suggest for our generational angst,” states the Telegraph. It is true that all these factors can contribute to the development of anxiety.
This is mainly because people tend to grow very insecure from all these things. The values are shattered and the judgement is greater than ever and comes from every corner. It’s just natural to assume that this kind of living can make any person anxious.
Another factor that can cause the rise of anxiety is the overwhelming amount of choice people get. It’s not that choice in itself is harmful to have, but regarding the pressure to be always the best in a society which judges your every move, some choices (or the insecurities that can come from the sheer amount of choice) can definitely affect your self-esteem.
So, how to fight it?
Anxiety nowadays is treated with medications and counselling. The pharmaceutical companies thrive on the anxiety of the people, with 65% of North Americans taking prescription medications daily and 43% taking mood altering prescriptions regularly.
However, in most cases, relaxation has been proven to be a very effective way of treating anxiety. This is why there are also holistic approaches include meditation, different types of yoga, massage, and other relaxation techniques.
Another interesting approach in reducing anxiety is music therapy. Although so far it has had some success, neuroscientists in the UK assert that they have found the perfect song for people who suffer from anxiety. They report that this song has the ability to reduce anxiety by 65% by just listening to it.
According to Dr. David Lewis-Hodgson of Mindlab International, this song managed to induce a greater state of relaxation in the listener than any other music tested to date. The tests had shown that listening to this song resulted in a staggering 65% reduction in the participants’ overall anxiety and a 35% reduction in their usual psychological resting states.
The name of the song is Weightless and is created by Marconi Union.
What is particularly curious about this song is that Marconi Union created it in collaboration with sound therapists. It has been created in such way that it’s designed to slow down heart rate, reduce blood pressure and lower levels of stress.
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