At some point in our lives, most of us will experience anxiety. It’s actually a natural reaction to many stressors such as starting a new job, taking final exams, and becoming a new parent.
Now for many people, the anxiety will subside once the stressor goes away. But for others, anxiety becomes persistent and even excessive, even without obvious stressors, interfering with daily life. In these cases, the person is diagnosed with an anxiety disorder.
Types of Anxiety Disorders
According to the National Institute of Mental Health, roughly 31% of adults in this country will experience an anxiety disorder at some point in their life. In fact, according to the Anxiety & Depression Association of America, anxiety disorders are the most common mental health condition in the United States.
Anxiety disorders include:
- Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD)
- Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
- Panic disorder
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Social anxiety disorder
- Separation anxiety disorder
- Symptoms of Anxiety Disorders
Anxiety can trigger symptoms such as:
- Excessive fear and worrying
- Irrational fear of danger
- Racing thoughts
- Shortness of breath or rapid breathing
- Sleep issues
- Headache and stomachache
- Pounding heart
- Muscle tension
How are Anxiety Orders Treated?
If you are suffering with an anxiety disorder, life may feel overwhelming most of the time. But know that there is help out there for you. Psychotherapy, or talk therapy, can reduce or eliminate your uncomfortable symptoms. Your therapist can also assess you to see if you are a good candidate for an anti-anxiety medication, at least to start. Of course, I have found there are plenty of alternative options, such as deep breathing, acupuncture, and other relaxation techniques, that have helped my clients find calm and peace.
If you’d like to explore therapy options, please reach out to me. Life can get better.