Why Do I Keep Waking Up with Anxieties?

By Marie Miguel|Updated April 1, 2022
CheckedMedically Reviewed By Dawn Brown, LPC

We are all familiar with those occasional restless nights when the thoughts are rushing through our brains so fast; we can't shut them down. We follow them into the worst- case scenarios of our anxieties and wake in the morning feeling as exhausted as if we've gone on a long journey.

The Secret Play Ground

Normally, we play out our anxieties to an end course of confrontation and resolution. After determining exactly what our anxieties are, we begin exploring courses of action that will minimize our anxieties or that will allow us to have closure with the subject of our anxieties. We worry about our seventeen- year- old daughter dating and set down strict rules for behaviors. This minimizes our anxieties until she turns eighteen and we resolve that we will always worry about her, but she is old enough to make her own choices, and we are only exhausting ourselves by trying to control her.

Confrontation and resolution don't come easily, and for fifteen percent of the population (Citation?), anxiety disorders are distressful enough to affect their everyday lives. They can inhibit the ability to perform tasks and make clear decisions. They can affect job performance. Unaddressed anxieties can potentially lead to depression and self-harming behaviors.

Redirecting unaddressed anxieties is common. You speak well in the company of close peers, who believe you would make a good spokesperson, but you are secretly afraid of crowds. You tell your friends the general public would never understand you and make other excuses for not demonstrating your abilities in front of others.

Worrying that you may not be qualified for a possible position may cause you to sabotage your chances for advancement with self-defeating or self-deprecating behaviors. The failure to address anxieties can continue into your sleep long after you've shut down conscious thought. They may represent themselves in bizarre dreams or cause you to awake without remembering any dreams at all; just an acute feeling of anxiety.

The Cycle Of Sleep Anxiety

There are several types of anxiety disorders that include social anxiety, separation anxiety, panic disorder, phobia, anxiety attacks and those who wake with anxieties.

People with anxieties all display a different set of symptoms, both physical and mental, but there are common symptoms that characterize waking with anxieties. These symptoms include but are not limited to:

  • Feeling weak and fatigued;
  • Difficulty breathing;
  • Mental confusion and fear;
  • Nervousness or a feeling of impending doom;
  • Restlessness;
  • Insomnia or difficulty sleeping;
  • Tingling/numbness in the hands/legs;
  • Excessive sweating and chills;
  • Upset stomach or diarrhea;
  • Muscle tension.

Consistently waking with anxieties can have a very debilitating impact on a person's well-being. Our hours of sleep are used by both our bodies and our brains to heal illnesses, mend injuries, resolve emotional conflict; gain inspiration - even solve problems!

Our sleep is the reset button for our day. If we wake with anxieties, we're running the same program we ran yesterday and compounding it with the worries of today. There is no pause to refresh, only the building momentum of our anxious thoughts.

Taking Control

An eating disorder often accompanies anxieties. We may gulp down our food restlessly, listlessly pick over our food or binge eat on favorite foods that may or may not be healthy. Blood sugar fluctuates and is lowest in the morning, which can contribute to feeling weak and run down. Some of the foods recommended for relieving stress are green, leafy vegetables, organic turkey breast, fermented foods, wild Alaskan salmon, and blueberries. Plan your meals and keep them on a timed schedule. Sit down to eat - don't eat on the run. If you're listless about your food, try to plate it attractively, so it appears more appetizing to you.

A daily exercise routine is highly recommended for relieving stress and relaxing muscles for a sound night of sleep. There aren't any perfect routines. Someone with a lot of pent-up steam might enjoy weight lifting, while another who just wishes to clear the internal dialog for a while might find calisthenics a satisfying experience.

Change The Environment

Our surroundings effect our moods. When we are with that special someone, we look for a romantic setting to enhance the mood. The bright colors of a circus provoke a cheerful, carefree mood. Make an appraisal of your living quarters. Do they feel dark and cluttered? Maybe you need to bring in some sunshine with a fresh paint job, clear the laundry basket and put a new rug in the bedroom.

Keep your living arrangements as fresh and cheery as possible, and while you're at it, take note of the places you habitually go and the effect they have on your overall mood. Do they seem a little too dim and color faded? Are they comfortable only for their repetitiveness? Add to your exercise routine, something that will change the scenery; such as hiking, boating, bicycling or swimming.

The Meditative Clearing House

Meditation is the art of learning to clear all words from your mind as quickly as they are formed. A very challenging art form to follow, but there are a few techniques to help in the transition. Choose a peaceful, private spot for your meditations. Add music if you would like. Learn the various yoga is sitting positions and use the one that is most comfortable for you.

When you begin your meditation, concentrate on your breathing. Imagine the air circulating down into your diaphragm, then upwards into your larynx to breathe out again. Concentrate also, on your body alignment. Focusing on the external aspects of correct breathing and balanced energy helps distract from the internal demands of anxieties. With practice, meditation becomes a very effective means of controlling and calming anxieties.

Another, very simple meditative technique is to mentally concentrate on each body part, beginning with the toes, telling them to relax, it's time to sleep. It's very seldom that a person can reach the part where he tells his shoulders to relax before he's sound asleep.

Sleep Anxiety Therapy

Most therapists will tell you that your ability to control or overcome your anxieties depends on your willingness to take charge. They will ask questions about your diet, exercise routine, techniques used to cope with anxieties and will give you a home remedy plan very much like the one listed.

Does this mean you don't need therapy to handle sleep-related anxieties? All you need to do is follow a home remedy plan? That depends. Anxieties cover a very broad spectrum, from mild to severe. Many people with mild to moderate sleep anxieties can self-reconstruct into a more affirmative mood through motivated action. Others need the process of confronting prevailing issues, examining the source of redirected anxieties and guidance in finding closure for things they are powerless to change.

Other questions will involve your medical history, background and family relationships. Some medical conditions can cause anxieties upon waking. Some anxieties are caused by trauma or other emotional crisis, even uncertainty over gender roles.

Records indicate that genetics may play a large part in anxiety disorders. Often, if one family member is diagnosed with an anxiety disorder, other members also suffer anxieties in one form or another. A cousin may have social anxiety, an aunt be highly claustrophobic, causing her to avoid rush hour traffic, crowded shopping malls and closed in places. However, the role of genetics and how much the family environment influences anxiety disorders is not yet clear. Research indicates genetics play a role in modifying emotional responses. In situations where others may be just a little nervous, such as preparing for a major exam or applying for a job, the person with wired in anxieties is falling apart.

Self- Medicating

You know you're high-wired. You've done everything you could to control your anxieties, yet you still wake in the morning feeling like you were hit by a freight train. You're still not ready to see a therapist - even that thought causes anxieties, but you have heard of the online drug called phenibut. Sold under various brand names, this is a central nervous system depressant with anti-anxiety and sedative effects. It currently has not been approved for use within the U.S. Most people find it effective when used in controlled doses to combat waking with anxieties in the morning.

Although well-tolerated, possible side effects can include sedation, somnolence, nausea, irritability, agitation, headaches and allergic reactions. Overdose on phenibut can cause drowsiness, vomiting, lowered blood pressure and fatty liver degeneration. However, there have been no deaths associated with phenibut overdose.

The Psychiatric Response

Overall, the abuse and addictiveness of phenibut have been rare, but its increasing popularity has caused concern among the medical and psychiatric profession. Phenibut is often used to calm nerves and induce better focus.

Like any drug, learn term use can become addicting, and withdrawals quite severe when not using the drug. To avoid further discomfort, a user may take higher and more frequent doses. After long periods of use, stopping phenibut suddenly will result in the previous symptoms returning.

Prescribed Drugs For Anxiety When Waking In The Morning

Anti-depressants, such as trazodone, have been very effective at treating sleep-related anxieties. Benzodiazepines, such as Restoril or Halcion are good at controlling sleepwalking and banishing night terrors, but they may cause you to feel drowsy during the day and become dependent on drugs to help you sleep.

Before being prescribed medication, a psychiatrist will make a full assessment of your medical and mental health. You will be under the guidance of a therapist who will determine how well the medication is helping you to progress in reducing your anxieties.

When You Need To See A Therapist

Our emotions are so complex, keeping them harmonized is like trying to fine tune an extremely complicated musical instrument. It can be difficult to place a determining line between normal and abnormal, but if you are waking with anxieties in the morning, something profound is happening internally, if not externally.

Self-medication works only on a short-time basis. It may get you over the hump regarding your everyday coping skills, but if you continue suffering anxieties after a lifestyle make-over, you may be suffering from an anxiety-mood disorder. A therapist will help you find the basic causes of your anxious state.

Help is always available at BetterHelp.com, where you can depend on a team of therapists or a favorite counselor to help you through periods of anxiety and related symptoms. All counselors are licensed and experienced and have dealt with cases similar to yours before. At BetterHelp, you will learn to confront your anxieties, resolve problems and find closure with past issues. A little scary, but also exciting to know that someone understands your anxieties are very real, very painful and interfere with the quality of your life and your relationship to others.

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