Experiencing occasional anxiety is a normal part of life, but for someone with an anxiety disorder they experience intense, persistent and excessive worry and fear about some of the normal life situations and if they experience repeated anxieties and fears they can find themselves in a panic attack within minutes. Untreated, these feelings of panic interfere with the normal activities and responsibilities they have throughout the day. For some people their episodes of anxiety may be connected to an underlying health issue and in other people life experiences and traumatic events can trigger anxiety disorders.
Anxiety disorders are real, they are serious, and they are the most common mental disorder in the United States. An estimated 40 million American adults suffer from anxiety disorders and only 1/3 receive treatment. Steps you can take to reduce the effects of the symptoms: Get help early, stay active, avoid alcohol or drug use.
Self-help coping strategies for anxiety can be very effective, But if your worries, fears, or anxiety attacks have become so great that they’re causing extreme distress or disrupting your daily routine, then it’s important to seek professional help. Your therapist can help you find new coping strategies to deal with stress that is out of control and find out what is causing anxiety.
If you’re experiencing a lot of physical anxiety symptoms, you should start by getting a medical checkup. Your doctor can check to make sure that your anxiety isn’t caused by a medical condition, such as a thyroid problem, hypoglycemia, or asthma. Since certain drugs and supplements can cause anxiety, your doctor will also want to know about any prescriptions, over-the-counter medications, herbal remedies, and recreational drugs you’re taking.
If your physician rules out a medical cause, the next step is to consult with a therapist who has experience treating anxiety disorders. The therapist will work with you to determine the cause and type of your anxiety disorder and devise a course of treatment.
If you identify with any of the following 7 signs and symptoms, and they just won’t go away, you may be suffering from an anxiety disorder: