Worried? Nervous? Tense? Everyone feels anxious sometimes but anxiety disorders are different from routine daily worrying. There are many types of anxiety disorders as well as treatments. Anxiety disorders may look very different in different people.
SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS OF ANXIETY DISORDERS
All anxiety disorders have one common major symptoms- persistent or severe fear or worry in situations where most people wouldn’t feel threatened.
Emotional / psychological symptoms of anxiety include:
Physical symptoms of anxiety include:
TYPES OF ANXIETY DISORDERS
Generalized Anxiety Disorder: The essential feature is free floating anxiety, worrying and tension. This disorder is more common in women, and often related to chronic environmental stress. The client reports apprehension (worries about future misfortunes, feeling “on edge”, difficulty in concentrating, etc.);motor tension (restless fidgeting, tension headaches, trembling, inability to relax); and autonomic overactivity (light headedness, sweating, tachycardia or tachypnoea, epigastric discomfort, dizziness, dry mouth, etc.)
Panic Disorder: The essential features are recurrent attacks of severe anxiety (panic attacks) which are unpredictable, sudden and not restricted to any particular situation or set of circumstances. Typical panic attack has sudden onset of palpitations, chest pain, choking sensations, dizziness, and feelings of unreality (depersonalization or derealization), and almost invariably, a secondary fear of dying, losing control, or going mad that develop rapidly last few minutes and subside. A panic attack is often followed by a persistent fear of having another attack.
Specific Phobias: These are phobias restricted to highly specific situations such as proximity to particular animals, heights, thunder, darkness, flying, closed spaces, urinating or defecating in public toilets, eating certain foods, dentistry, the sight of blood or injury, and the fear of exposure to specific diseases.
Agoraphobia: include fears not only of open -113 -spaces but also of related aspects such as the presence of crowds and the difficulty of immediate easy escape to a safe place (usually home).
Social Anxiety or Social Phobia: Starting often in adolescence this involves overwhelming worry and self consciousness about everyday social situations leading to avoidance. Worry centers around fears of being judged or behaving in a way in public that may cause embarrassment.
The specific treatment approach depends on the type of anxiety disorder and its severity. But in general a behavior therapy or medication or combination of the two are used. Anti depressant medications are the drugs of choice for the treatment of anxiety disorders.