December 9, 2021

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Anxiety Disorders: An Increasingly Common Disorder

4 min read

An exam, a misunderstanding with a boss or a colleague at work, moving home, family problems, Raise your hand who has not ever felt anxiety in such a context. It happens to all of us, right? So why not to hire someone else? OR why not to treat with this, reach out now to psychology Brighton

When it occurs mildly, it is a common response to stressful circumstances. It is still an alert mechanism that warns us of a “threatening” situation and allows us to prepare to face it. The problem comes when the reactions are too intense, too frequent or do not fit the reality of the situation. When great discomfort occurs, with significant and recurring physical and psychological symptoms, it is considered pathological. It is estimated that around 19% of people, especially women, have suffered from it at some point in their life.

Anxiety Disorders: Causes And Symptoms

Anxiety disorders are a diverse group of conditions that have feelings of anxiety in common. For example, agoraphobia, generalized anxiety disorder, panic attacks, post-traumatic stress disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder.

Anxiety is triggered for many reasons. For example, some life experiences, which do not have to be bad or negative but it is enough that they are big changes, such as a new job or a romantic breakup, can generate an episode of anxiety. On other occasions, some very threatening situations, such as a traffic accident, cause it and then remain for months and even years after the event. There are also certain genetic factors that could influence, being subjected to a lot of stress continuously or the consumption of some drugs, such as amphetamines or LSD.

The forms of expression of anxiety are very varied, although there are some common characteristics. For example, the most common psychological symptoms are constant and excessive worry, difficulty concentrating, apprehension, frequent forgetfulness, irritability, feeling overwhelmed, restlessness, or fear of losing control.

Anxiety also presents physical symptoms: muscle tension, sweating, palpitations, chest pain, shortness of breath, dizziness, tremors, tingling, nausea and vomiting, and headache.

Anxiety Can Be Treated

There are two types of approaches to anxiety: psychological and pharmacological, and they are most effective when combined.

Psychotherapy seeks to change behaviors by reinforcing defense mechanisms and promoting a positive personality. The most used method is cognitive-behavioral therapy, which aims to help the patient understand the nature of what is happening to him and the reason for the maladaptation of it. The therapist teaches how to manage anxiety and control fears by questioning its logic and replacing it with more rational ways of thinking.

Medications, which must be prescribed by a doctor, are classified into two categories: those that serve to calm anxiety attacks in the short term, and those that are used in the longer term to reduce symptoms and prevent attacks. 

Five Tips To Fight Anxiety

Faced with a strong or permanent anxiety problem, it is necessary to see a doctor since he is the one who must evaluate the symptoms, diagnose the disorder and determine the best way to treat it. However, there are some tips that can be applied when dealing with those situations that generate anxiety:

  • Understand anxiety and don’t run away. The symptoms are very annoying and can sometimes become disabling, but it is necessary to know that anxiety does not cause heart attacks or suffocation. Also, avoiding the situations that trigger it is a defense mechanism that will not help treat the disorder. It is necessary to understand what is happening and learn to cope with it with the techniques that health professionals will teach you.
  • Don’t focus on the problem. Try not to think about the same thing and try to think of something other than what worries you and causes you anxiety. Do some activity that diverts your attention: sport is the best ally, since; in addition, it helps to produce endorphins, a hormone that the brain releases and helps us feel good.
  • Change your way of thinking. Try to get out of the loop of negative and catastrophic thoughts: be aware of them and work on being more positive, realistic and looking for different answers to the same questions. Sure the situation you see seems very bad, but is it really?
  • Learn to relax. Abdominal breathing, that is, breathing with the diaphragm in a slow and deliberate way, is a simple technique that helps control anxiety. Practice it frequently when you have an anxiety episode.
  • Lead a healthy life. Drinking alcohol and smoking make anxiety worse, while getting plenty of rest, eating a healthy diet, and doing physical exercise decrease it.

In an increasingly demanding and changing life environment that leads us to constant challenges, anxiety disorders are a very common now. But the most important thing of all is that it has a solution. In fact, much of the treatment is done by you, by understanding your own feelings and thoughts, so with a lot of work and professional help, anxiety can be overcome.

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