What Is Anxiety?
Anxiety is a mental health disorder that is characterized by feelings of being overwhelmed with worry, fear, uneasiness or panic about the present or the future. These symptoms can be debilitating and can interfere with one’s ability to lead a healthy life. In my private practice, I have noticed an influx of referrals from patients with anxiety issues.
What Anxiety Can Feel Like
Patients have stated “I feel like I am barely surviving” “the anxious thoughts seem to take over my life”, ” I feel like I get into a rabbit hole and I cannot climb myself up” Anxiety disorder is common and it affects approximately 3 million US cases per year (www.webmd.com). The prevalence of anxiety symptoms may relate to the increased pressures of the day to day tasks in our society. Anxiety Disorders also has a genetic link and it can be passed down from one generation to another.
Types of Anxiety Disorders
There are several types of anxiety disorders: Panic Disorder, Social Anxiety Disorder, Specific Phobias, and Generalized Anxiety Disorder.
Types of Anxiety Disorders
Some of the symptoms of anxiety disorders include:
• Feelings of panic, fear, worry or uneasiness
• Sense of loss of control
• Shortness of breath
• Heart palpitations
• Inability to remain calm and be still
• Muscle tension
• Jittery and butterflies and urge to urinate
• Inability to quiet negative self-talk and inner criticism
Exact Cause is Unknown
The exact causes of anxiety disorders are unknown; however, most anxious concerns have shown to be connected to one’s relationship interactions, in the present or in the past, that is being manifested. Other connected factors are related to one’s pattern of their perception of themselves and of the world. The theories of CBT and interpersonal therapy have been proven to help decrease these symptoms drastically.
One of the important areas that I focus on in therapy, is to help patients increase their awareness of their anxious thoughts in a productive manner. It is essential to understand that what you feed, will grow. The more acute one’s awareness of their patterns, then the better equipped they are to challenge the ineffective thoughts. As such, they are then able to replace the ineffective/anxious thoughts with healthier perspectives and insight into their relationships and mindset. This the foundation in which I help build a patient’s coping skills to help manage their symptoms.
If you are having anxious thoughts and they are debilitating, I strongly encourage you to seek the support of a mental health clinician. My patients have experienced relief and you can too.