Sweaty palms, nail biting, and pacing back and forth in your room are all habits you’re probably already familiar with when you have anxiety. But our bodies also have a surprising way of doing strange things when we worry. Sometimes, the unconventional route is also an uncomfortable one. Psych2Go shares with you 6 weird things anxiety causes you to do:
1. You have ice cold hands and feet.
This is something I experience everyday! Anne Marie Albano, an associate professor of medical psychology at Columbia University Medical Center states, “When you’re anxious, your blood flow is redirected away from your extremities and toward your larger organs in your torso.” This is why it makes it hard for your blood to circulate well that helps keep your hands and feet warm. When you feel as though you may be in danger, your body enters the fight-or-flight mode to prepare yourself to survive. Unfortunately, anxiety isn’t rational and causes you to feel this often.
2. You experience gas problems and frequent urination.
Being anxious causes you to have an overactive gut. Albano states, “Gas is created when the acid in your stomach is churning while nervousness runs throughout your body.” In addition, when you’re anxious, you may be prone to eating and drinking too quickly. Along with gas problems, frequent urination is also something people with anxiety commonly experience. When you’re anxious, your muscles tense up and your body puts pressure on areas, such as your bladder and abdomen, that makes you want to urinate more. Although these experiences sound embarrassing, they’re nothing to be ashamed of. If you are concerned, you can talk to your doctor about solutions to these symptoms.
3. You catch yourself yawning a lot.
I used to think I did this frequently because I was always tired, especially when I was still a student constantly deprived of sleep. But, maybe anxiety had more to do with it than mere exhaustion! Albano states, “Some individuals, especially with generalized anxiety or panic, tend to breathe more rapidly than the average person.” As a result, rapid breathing tricks the brain into thinking you need more oxygen, which causes you to take deep inhales. So the next time someone thinks you’re yawning because you’re bored or tired, inform them that it could be anxiety.
4. You get rashes on your skin.
Anxiety can give you an uncomfortable itch—metaphorically and physically. Albano states that being anxious frequently can cause you to experience skin allergies and problems, such as eczema. This is because when people find themselves highly stressed, extra cortisol, which is the stress hormone, rushes through the bloodstream. As a result, the skin starts to feel irritated and rashes begin to develop. If you experience this issue often, we advise you to talk to your doctor about ways to alleviate it.
5. You often space out and have trouble concentrating.
Entering a dreamlike state sounds relaxing and even ideal for escaping your troubles, but having severe anxiety can cause you to have out-of-body experiences. In other words, when things start to feel too overwhelming, you may find that everything around you feels unreal, including the body that you’re in. This is because of the fight-or-flight mode you enter, which prepares you to deal with the current issue by eliminating stimuli nearby that’s too much for you to handle.
6. You hear phantom rings.
When you have anxiety, you may constantly be sitting on edge and anticipating something. One of those events may be a phone call or text message from someone you’ve been waiting to hear back from. As a result, you may hear your phone ring or buzz only to check it and find that the sound was all in your head. Researchers call this phenomenon “ringxiety” or “phantom ringing.” For instance, people in a relationship with high anxiety may also develop a strong attachment to their partner, so if they’re worried their partner isn’t as committed, they may expect the worse and think they’re talking to someone else. To reduce phantom ringing, it’s important to talk about the anxieties you have with your partner. It may also be wise to disconnect for a while and embrace nature instead.
What do you think?
Does anxiety cause you to do these strange things? Psych2Go would love to hear your thoughts! Please be sure to leave a comment down below!
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If you enjoyed this article, then you may also like How to Cope with Your Social Anxiety or 10 Ways to Deal with Anxiety in School and What Teachers Need to Know.
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Brenza, A. (2015, February 17). 6 Weird Signs You’re Way Too Anxious. Prevention. Retrieved May 3, 2018.
When Anxiety Leads to Urinary Problems. (2018). Calm Clinic. Retrieved May 3, 2018.