Thursday, October 7, 2010

What is Anxiety?

New anxiety and panic disorder treatment - rapid resolution therapy, emdr and CBT.Anxiety is a common reaction to the stress of everyday life or to a particular situation. It is a normal emotion often associated with a feeling of uneasiness, fear or worry. Everyone feels anxious from time to time—like when you’re running late or interviewing for a job. People with generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), however, feel some anxiety or worry almost constantly. They often anticipate disaster or have exaggerated worries about a wide range of issues, from their health to their families to their daily responsibilities. Yet even when they recognize that the worrying is excessive, it is hard to control. GAD affects their body, too. Many people with generalized anxiety disorder visit their doctor with problems—such as sleep trouble or muscle aches—without realizing these are common symptoms of generalized anxiety disorder. People suffering from anxiety often experience depression as well. In fact, as many as 90% of the people diagnosed with anxiety also suffer from symptoms of depression. Anxiety disorders are treatable.

Anxiety Disorders

The emotional condition of a person suffering from anxiety is typically accompanied with a variety of uncomfortable physical symptoms including heart palpitations, headaches, name a few. (Refer to SYMPTOMS for more details on how to recognize an anxiety disorder.) The onset and occurrence of these symptoms are categorized into different types of anxiety disorders:
  • Generalized anxiety: physical symptoms typically last all day, usually mounting from worry and stress related to small and big daily issues such as work, school, health or financial concerns.

  • Panic attacks: the sudden and intense rise of an uncomfortable physical symptom or symptoms (i.e., dizziness, shortness of breath, rapid heartbeat, sweating) brought on by heightened fear and often the thought of impending doom.

  • Phobias: physical symptoms appear when a person is faced with a particular situation or object triggered by irrational fear; common fears are acrophobia (fear of heights) and claustrophobia (fear of closed spaces). It also can be an intense, persistent and reoccurring fear of certain objects (such as snakes, spiders or blood). These exposures may even trigger a panic attack.

  • Obsession/compulsions: rather than the presence of physical symptoms, this type of anxiety affects a person’s behavior and thought process, typically arising from excessive fear; repetitive actions or rituals, exaggerated and persistent thoughts as well as feeling out of control are typical.

  • Social anxiety: when a person is subjected to public attention or surrounded by other people, unpleasant physical symptoms emerge; the person often has an excessive fear of being criticized or disapproved by others.

  • Post traumatic stress: probably the most severe of anxiety disorders; physical and emotional symptoms follow a specific life-threatening, dangerous or fearful event and usually remain with a person indefinitely. (Please visit for more detailed information about PTSD and effective treatments available.)
Enduring an anxiety disorder can be debilitating and is a serious mental illness. Collectively, anxiety disorders are the most common form of mental illness in the United States affecting over 40 million Americans. People with anxiety disorders seek medical relief for symptoms that mimic physical illnesses. However, there is often an underlying cause or event for the anxiety, though it may not be easily recognized or controlled. If properly diagnosed and treated, people with anxiety disorders can experience freedom and relief and regain control of their lives. (See TREATMENTS for effective therapy for anxiety disorders.)

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