Some general triggers:

  • A stressful job or work environment
  • Driving or traveling
  • Genetics — anxiety could run in your family
  • Withdrawal from drugs or certain medications
  • Side effects of certain medications
  • Trauma
  • Phobias, such as agoraphobia(fear of crowded or open spaces) and claustrophobia (fear of small spaces)
  • Some chronic illnesses like heart disease, diabetes, or asthma
  • Chronic Pain
  • Having another mental illness such as depression
  • Caffeine


There are few things can increase the chance of depression, including the following:


  • Abuse. Physical, sexual, or emotional abuse can make you more vulnerable to depression later in life.
  • Age. People who are elderly are at higher risk of depression. That can be made worse by other factors, such as living alone and having a lack of social support.
  • Certain medications. Some drugs, such as isotretinoin (used to treat acne), corticosteroids, can increase your risk of depression.
  • Conflict. Depression in someone who has the biological vulnerability to it may result from personal conflicts or disputes with family members or friends.
  • Death or a loss. Sadness or grief after the death or loss of a loved one, though natural, can increase the risk of depression.
  • Gender. Women are about twice as likely as men to become depressed. No one’s sure why. The hormonal changes that women go through at different times of their lives may play a role.
  • Genes. A family history of depression may increase the risk. It’s thought that depression is a complex trait, meaning there are probably many different genes that each exert small effects, rather than a single gene that contributes to disease risk. The genetics of depression, like most psychiatric disorders, are not as simple or straightforward as in purely genetic diseases such as Huntington’s chorea or cystic fibrosis.
  • Major events. Even good events such as starting a new job, graduating, or getting married can lead to depression. So can moving, losing a job or income, getting divorced, or retiring. However, the syndrome of clinical depression is never just a “normal” response to stressful life events.
  • Other personal problems. Problems such as social isolation due to other mental illnesses or being cast out of a family or social group can contribute to the risk of developing clinical depression.
  • Serious illnesses. Sometimes, depression happens along with a major illness or may be triggered by another medical condition.
  • Substance misuse. Nearly 30% of people with substance misuse problems also have major or clinical depression. Even if drugs or alcohol temporarily make you feel better, they ultimately will aggravate depression.
In a world of growing mental health awareness, it comes as no surprise that anxiety is one of the leading diagnoses. While it’s perfectly normal to have some anxiety on a fleeting basis, it’s not normal for it to wreak havoc on your day-to-day life. What triggers one person’s anxiety may not even register on the radar for another, so it’s important to learn and take stock of what may or may not provoke your anxiety.1. Caffeine

Topping the list, caffeine can do many things, including inducing anxiety. It can be great in small doses, though tolerance levels will vary from person to person. In some people, too much caffeine can be a trigger that worsens existing anxiety. Fortunately, it’s also an easier trigger to control. For example, some people may find their anxiety improved simply by cutting back from three to two cups of coffee.


2.  A Messy Home Environment 

This one often surprises people. A messy home environment doesn’t always cause stress or anxiety for people, but in an individual with anxiety, it can make a huge difference. If you struggle with anxiety, consider evaluating your home environment. A cluttered home can sometimes be an issue because it sits at the back of your mind on your to-do list. The proverbial mental to-do list can be triggering for anxiety, resulting in a number of responses including insomnia, increased stress, reduced ability to focus, and more. Small changes, such as adding the house to your to-do list, or simply tidying up on a regular basis has the potential to reduce anxiety; but this may not be true for everyone.


3.  Self Neglect

Self-neglect and self-care are often tough pills to swallow, but yet still surprisingly common in the world of anxiety. Neglecting yourself and not taking care of your personal needs can be an anxiety trigger. Whether you’re not showering regularly, skipping meals, staying up too late or not going to the doctor, it’s important to evaluate these behaviors and work to take better care of yourself. If you are struggling with getting these tasks done, there may be more at play, such as depression, which can sometimes go hand-in-hand with anxiety.


4.  Not Enough Sleep 

Sleep, or lack thereof, is linked to a slew of mental and physical health issues, so it should come as no surprise that anxiety is one of them. While staying up later than usual on occasion likely won’t cause any harm, a lack of sleep over a long period of time can exacerbate anxiety symptoms in some. In some people, small changes such as practicing good sleep hygiene or creating a more realistic sleep schedule can make a huge difference.


5.  Stress

Unfortunately, stress is a common part of life. Even worse, it can also become a trigger for anxiety. It’s extremely difficult to control stress, which in turn makes it equally difficult to control the anxiety that results. While there are ways to reduce stress, it’s important to find a way that works best for you and your situation.


6.  Finances 

Often going hand-in-hand with stress are your finances. For some people, it doesn’t matter if they’re completely broke or living with a hefty cushion; finances simply cause them anxiety. While this may seem like a more challenging anxiety trigger, it can be surprisingly helpful to sit down and make a plan. Many find that having a plan, even just a simple one, can reduce their anxiety significantly.


7.  Social Gatherings 

There are several different types of anxiety, and social anxiety is surprisingly common. The idea of having to interact with people, whether it be strangers, acquaintances, or even close friends, can quickly trigger anxiety in some. If you think you may be suffering from a form of social anxiety, it’s best to work with a trained mental health professional who can work with you to identify and find a solution that works best for your situation.


8.  Work Environment 

A stressful job or work environment can bring on the occasional bout of anxiety. While it’s normal to deal with occasional work-related stress and anxiety, it’s abnormal for it to be a daily part of the job over several months or years. Unfortunately, this may be a more difficult trigger to address. Whether the job or the work environment is causing you stress, it may be time to work with a mental healthcare provider who can help you address and deal with the stress and anxiety that goes along with it.


9.  Conflict 

Any type of conflict can trigger anxiety, whether it’s an argument with a co-worker, your spouse, parent, child, or even some random person on the internet. Fortunately, conflict as an anxiety trigger can be addressed. By learning better conflict resolution, you can work to better manage your anxiety at the same time.

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Knowing the triggers that are associated with your anxiety can help you work to keep your anxiousness in check, which will help improve your overall mental health and well being. Fortunately, Intrepid Mental Wellness professionals are trained to help identify and address potential anxiety triggers and then work through them, which may include the use of prescribed psychiatric medications. If you are suffering from anxiety, we would love to hear from you and how we may be able to help!


If you think you have agoraphobia, and the anxiety is interfering with your daily life, you should talk to a primary care provider or psychiatrist. If you are afraid to visit a medical office in person, you may be able to schedule a telephone or video appointment.

The healthcare provider may ask you:

  • Do you get stressed about leaving your house?
  • Are there any places or situations you avoid because you’re afraid? Why are you afraid?
  • Do you rely on others to do your shopping and errands?

A healthcare provider can diagnose agoraphobia based on your symptoms, how often they happen and how severe they are. It is important to be open and honest with your healthcare providers. Your provider may diagnose agoraphobia if you meet specific standards developed by the American Psychiatric Association. To have a diagnosis of agoraphobia, a person must feel extreme fear or panic in at least two of the following situations:

  • Using public transportation.
  • Being in an open space.
  • Being in an enclosed space, such as a movie theater, meeting room or small store.
  • Standing in a line or being in a crowd.
  • Being out of your home alone.

A therapist can help you work through your fears. Using cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), a mental healthcare provider can help you recognize thoughts that cause you anxiety. Then you’ll learn ways to react more productively.

Using relaxation and desensitization techniques, your provider may have you imagine a scary situation and manage the feelings. Eventually, you will be able to take part in activities that produce anxiety, and you will know how to manage your emotions. Over time, therapy can train the brain to think differently.

Your healthcare provider also may suggest medications called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) or serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs). Those medications can treat depression and anxiety disorders.

You can manage agoraphobia with lifestyle changes:

  • Avoid alcohol, drugs and caffeine (coffee, tea and soda, for example).
  • Eat a healthy, well-balanced diet.
  • Exercise regularly.
  • Practice breathing exercises.