There are many anxiety causes that aren’t that obvious. After all, it is a complicated disease.

It took decades of my life to understand my diagnosis of anxiety. While battling bipolar disorder and PTSD, I discovered symptoms that just didn’t line up. Even during my bouts of mania, some of my reactions were unfounded. It was not until I realized that I had an anxiety disorder, that I began to pay closer attention to my symptoms.

So what caused this anxiety disorder to develop? I took into consideration the obvious traumatic experiences that I had suffered and the neglect as well. But nothing seemed to answer all my questions about how I over-reacted in certain situations. There were episodes, not quite characterized by bipolar mania symptoms, nor were they lumped into my known scope of depression.

How did this happen? What underlying causes created my anxiety?

There are a few things that get left on the backburner, that most therapists and counselors never consider triggers for anxiety. You probably wouldn’t think these things could cause an anxiety disorder. That’s because most of these things are not critical situations. Here are a few anxiety causes that just might surprise you.

Physical ailments

Not only can physical ailments be anxiety symptoms, but they can also be anxiety causes. Illnesses, such as digestive disorders, migraines, diabetes and cardiac issues can, in turn, cause the onset of anxiety, or at least, make anxiety much worse. For instance, diabetes, when blood sugars are low, can cause hallucinations and disorientation. I have personally been witness to the side effects of low blood glucose levels.

After many episodes of this disoriented behavior, anxiety can form, driven by the fear of more diabetic episodes and even the fear of falling into a diabetic coma. Digestive issues are also culprits in creating anxiety issues, just as commonly as anxiety causing the physical ailments in digestion. You would be surprised at what physical sickness can do in terms of mental illness.

Emotional abuse

It took me 20 years to discover what emotional abuse really was. This was one of the many causes of my anxiety, matter of fact. Emotional abuse is the manipulation, coercion, control and intimidation of another human being by someone they care for or love. This form of abuse if tricky and sneaky, as most people cannot see the abuse, except for the victim.

The victim, even when the abuse is over, has an incredibly difficult time healing. In fact, most times, this sort of abuse leads to severe anxiety disorders, which then cause even more side effects and problems. Sometimes emotional abuse is much worse than physical abuse because if effects more than just the mind. It affects the entire state of human function.

Lack of purpose and drive

One of the many hidden anxiety causes is found in our deferred hopes and dreams. When we, as human beings, do not live up to our full potential, we will have an empty place inside. This feeling may not be visible to others, but it sleeps within us and causes strong anxious feelings. When we see others doing things we desire to do, we have regrets.

As these regrets build, so does more anxious feelings. We may settle in life, but there will always be a deep yearning for our true destiny, and most of us discover what that is between adulthood and mid-life. Many reasons why we don’t pursue these things is because we have given up the fight. When this happens, there will remain a low-level anxiety which builds as we grow older, strongest in our senior years.


Being empathetic can slowly lead to anxiety disorders, grown from the need to be compassionate toward others. Since emotional intelligence leaves you open for criticism and the acceptance of this criticism, it can also lead to social types of anxiety. Those who are empathetic are more prone to vulnerabilities as well, considering they are adept to soothing the soft hearts of others.

Tough exteriors are absent with the empath and this lack of durability can cause anxiety disorders and other mental ailments as well. It’s truly unfortunate that some of the best people suffer the harshest illnesses.


Some physician prescribed medications are positive improvements, although I usually don’t advocate many of them. There are, however, some asthma medications that can cause anxiety, or make anxiety symptoms worse.

Even your over-the-counter cold medications can cause anxiety, making heart rates increase and uneven breathing symptoms. This is because anxiety does affect the brain, as it is neurological, but also affects the body just as much. This connection means anxiety causes could be endless.


Even if none of these other things occur in your life, you could just be pre-dispositioned to suffer from anxiety. If your mother or father had an anxiety disorder, then you could also acquire this same disorder or a form of it. Now, this is not set in stone, some will inherit the illness while others will not.

Your genetics determine everything from eye color to the condition of your heart and lungs, this is also true for any mental health issue. My own mother suffered from an anxiety disorder and my father had bipolar disorder, I inherited both and few other things. Lucky me…

Drugs and alcohol

Substance abuse is much too common and has proven to a be a serious problem. There are so many things that can come from drug and alcohol abuse, including mental health disorders. Anxiety, for instance, can stem from long-term alcohol and drug abuse and can be a rather difficult, if not impossible, disorder to heal.

And there are endless anxiety causes, other than these few.

If you suffer from anxiety, do you fit any of these categories? Are you an empath? Did your parents suffer from anxiety? Well, even if you don’t fit any of these perspectives, there is some other reason why you suffer. Only you know your history and relationships with others, and this will give you the ability to understand what it will take to get better.

Learn all that you can about this subject because somewhere between the lines, there is a cure. From my socially anxious heart to yours, much love. Until next time…

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This Post Has One Comment

  1. Lisa M Countiss

    Great article!

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