Nursing Anxiety Interventions
Anxiety is a common symptom, and it’s important to know what interventions are available.
For urgent situations:
If you or the patient is in immediate danger, call 911 immediately.
If it’s not an emergency situation and you want to help out with a solution, call the doctor.
Anti-anxiety medications that can be given to patients in acute anxiety states include:
- Other medications
Benzodiazepines (Xanax, Ativan)
Benzodiazepines are a class of drugs that are used to treat anxiety. They are often used in combination with other medications and can be helpful for people with acute anxiety or panic disorders. Although benzodiazepines can be helpful for short-term use, they are addictive and should be limited as much as possible by patients in long-term management plans.
Other interventions for anxiety include:
Other interventions for anxiety include:
- Deep breathing exercises
- Exercise (walking, jogging, swimming)
- Massage therapy and acupressure can be helpful.
Acupuncture may be helpful in reducing the severity of symptoms. Hypnotherapy may also be an option to try if you have severe anxiety symptoms.
Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is a popular option for long-term anxiety management.
Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is a popular option for long-term anxiety management. This form of therapy focuses on changing thinking patterns in order to change behaviors and emotions. CBT can be used to treat a wide variety of anxiety disorders, including phobias, panic disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
CBT can be done in person or online by working with a therapist who will help you learn how to think differently about your problems. The goal of CBT is to identify negative thought patterns that fuel your anxiety and replace them with more positive ones.
Psychotherapy can also be helpful for long term anxiety management.
Psychotherapy can also be helpful for long term anxiety management. This option is a good choice for people who have had anxiety disorders or depression before, or if they are experiencing other mental health problems in addition to their anxiety.
- Psychotherapy may include cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) and/or mindfulness-based therapies. In CBT, you will learn how to identify negative thoughts and replace them with more positive ones, as well as develop skills to manage stress better.
- Mindfulness-based interventions help you focus on the present moment by bringing awareness to your thoughts and feelings without judging them.
Deep breathing exercises can help patients practice good self-care and find release from the symptoms of anxiety.
Deep breathing exercises can help patients practice good self-care and find release from the symptoms of anxiety. They are a simple and effective intervention that can be learned from a book or online, practiced at home with minimal equipment, used in a treatment setting with or without supervision; they’re also free for most people to use!
Deep breathing refers to inhaling through your nose for four seconds, holding it for two seconds, then exhaling through your mouth for eight seconds. This method of deep breathing is known as “diaphragmatic” because it involves using your diaphragm muscles (located between your belly button and ribcage) instead of just chest muscles when inhaling and exhaling air into/out of your lungs. This helps slow down heart rate while also calming you down physically so that you have more energy left over at the end of each day (instead of being drained by stress).
The benefits don’t stop with relaxation—research has shown that practicing deep breathing exercises can help manage anxiety symptoms such as muscle tension headaches (which I’ve experienced so many times!), insomnia due to racing thoughts at night when trying desperately to sleep (this was me!), difficulty concentrating on tasks due today’s busy lives where multitasking is necessary but hard on concentration levels anyway…and other issues related specifically
Nurses take their lead from the doctor, but can help patients get started on medication, therapy and alternative care for their anxiety.
You can help patients manage their anxiety by partnering with the doctor to coordinate treatment. You and your doctors should always work together as a team to optimize patient care.
Nurses can also provide support for patients who are struggling at home with PTSD or other anxiety disorders. You may be able to help them find a therapist in their area, or you could help them find ways they can manage their symptoms on their own through relaxation techniques, meditation, or self-talk (telling themselves good things).
In the end, it’s important for nurses to remember that anxiety is a common problem that affects many people. Nurses with their own experience of anxiety can be especially helpful in helping patients manage their symptoms and learn how to cope with them. In fact, some research suggests that people with social phobias are better able to recover from their condition if they have an empathetic listener who responds appropriately to their needs.