Does Alcohol Help Anxiety? Understand the Risks

Experiencing alcohol-induced panic attacks is a serious sign that it’s time to rethink your relationship with alcohol. What results is a vicious cycle of spiraling depression, increased anxiety levels, and a desperate attempt to feel better by drinking more, which ultimately makes the situation worse. If you have a co-occurring mental health condition, you are more likely to experience frequent and intense panic attacks.

If severe anxiety or panic attacks are a problem for you, make sure you get proper nutrition and exercise. Psychotherapy and mindfulness meditation can help you deal with anxiety. If you experience an alcohol-induced panic attack, it is important to take the right steps to calm yourself as soon as possible. However, while it is important to deal with panic attacks, it is also important to acknowledge the situation and the fear you feel. By acknowledging it, you will help your mind understand what is going on so as to understand that the situation will pass. Anyone can experience anxiety—or “hangxiety”—after drinking, even if you aren’t dealing with alcohol dependence.

How to stop alcohol related panic attacks

Thus, small things may easily upset them, and certain words or actions may be misunderstood. Something that would normally be ignored will now trigger paranoia and panic. There is also evidence that chronic alcohol abuse can lead to lasting anxiety, even after a person becomes sober. Dr. Okhifun is a passionate medical doctor, with over five years’ experience as a general practitioner. His passion for medical education led to his journey in medical writing.

When you drink, do you couple this with eating pretzels, pizza or sweets? We tend to pair up our vices, and not only drink alcohol but also eat highly does alcohol cause panic attacks dense, problematic foods. Your body can have an uncomfortable sensation the next day as a result, which can feel like a nervous energy or anxiety.

Can alcohol help with anxiety?

If you automatically reach for alcohol as soon as you notice the impending symptoms of a panic attack, you may believe that this substance calms you down and prevents you from spiralling. While alcohol can make your panic attacks worse, alcohol itself doesn’t cause panic attacks on its own. In other words, even if you stop drinking alcohol, you are likely still going to have panic attacks – you simply won’t have alcohol triggering them. This means that cutting out alcohol can help – but often further action is required in order to take full control of your condition.

It has come to the point where it’s socially acceptable to have a drink or two to ‘unwind’ and calm our nerves. But it’s important to remember alcohol is a strong sedative and a central nervous system depressant. While moderate consumption can be beneficial to a wide range of conditions, those with anxiety and panic attacks should steer clear of it.

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