What is Anxiety Disorder?

It is normal and sometimes even necessary for people to experience anxiety from time to time. The emotion of anxiety is a natural response to danger or stress that can help individuals to cope when faced with tense situations.

The feeling of mild anxiety generally helps people to manage many of their daily life challenges by causing them to be more alert and to work harder. Mild anxiety can also motivate them to stay focused on solving an important issue in their work or personal lives such as when trying to meet a tight deadline or driving in heavy traffic.

Unfortunately, for some people, this emotion of anxiety can become intense and debilitating. When anxiety starts to hinder an individual from living a full and productive life, then it may be because of a medical condition called anxiety disorder. Anxiety disorder is a condition that affects millions of people all around the world but it is extremely treatable.

When to Get Help With Anxiety

Some anxiety is normal, but when fear and worry keep you from functioning properly at work, school, or in your social life then it may be time to seek the professional help of a mental health practitioner or anxiety therapist in order to get a full evaluation. Anxiety disorders are different from the anxiety caused by one stressful or traumatic event. They can last 6 months or more and progressively get worse if they are not treated.

These types of disorders usually respond well to treatment combining medication and therapy. By getting anxiety counseling, most individuals who were experiencing excessive and debilitating anxiety go on to live full and healthy lives. If you or someone you know is faced with serious anxiety issues, then a skilled therapist will be able to tell you more about the treatment options for your anxiety disorder.

Symptoms of Anxiety Disorder

The symptoms of anxiety disorder are different in each individual but there are some common similarities which include excessive anxiety and irrational fear and worry. Other symptoms include:

  • Irrational ritualistic behaviors
  • Repeated memories, or flashbacks to traumatic events
  • Obsessive and uncontrollable thoughts
  • Feelings of fear, panic, and being ‘on edge’ or nervous
  • Nightmares and problems falling or staying asleep
  • Profuse sweating or numb hands and feet
  • Hyperventilation or shortness of breath
  • Dizziness, nausea, and/or dry mouth
  • Heart palpitations or chest pains
  • Inability to stay calm or be still

Types of Anxiety Disorders

Panic Disorder

Characterized by repeated and unexpected attacks of intense fear that are often accompanied by physiological symptoms like chest pains, sweating, and heart palpitations.

Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD)

People suffering from SAD experience social anxiety or phobia which is more than the occasional nerves or normal shyness. They are excessively self-conscious in normal everyday situations.

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

This type of anxiety disorder brings unwanted obsessive thoughts accompanied by compulsive behaviors that are aimed at reducing anxiety.

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

PTSD can develop as a result of an extremely stressful, traumatic, or life-threatening event in an individual’s life such as war or the sudden death of a loved one.

Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)

This is a pattern of constant and exaggerated worry or anxiety over various daily activities or events although there usually isn’t anything provoking it.

Specific Phobias

These are excessive and irrational fears of specific situations or objects such as a fear of spiders, closed spaces, flying, or heights. Most people who suffer from phobias know that their fear is irrational but can’t bring themselves to face it anyway.

Anxiety Counseling Near Me

If left untreated, anxiety can become worse and lead to serious physical health problems. Fortunately, anxiety disorders respond extremely well to treatment. The specific approach used depends on the type of anxiety disorder the individual is experiencing as well as its severity but in general, most of these conditions are treated with some combination of counseling or behavioral therapy, and medication.

If you have excessive anxiety, it’s vital to seek professional help in order to prevent the condition from becoming more serious and possibly leading to physical illness. A skilled practitioner will be able to perform effective anxiety therapy so that you can live a normal and productive life.