Anxiety Disorder

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Definition:

Anxiety is a general state of dread or uneasiness that a person feels in response to a real or imagined danger. The anxiety's out of proportion to the situation provoking it. The anxiety interferes with normal every day functioning.

Types of Anxiety Disorders:
6 major types.
  • generalized anxiety disorder
  • obsessive-compulsive disorder
  • panic disorder
  • phobia
  • post-traumatic stress disorder
  • social anxiety disorder

Symptoms:

  • feelings of apprehension or dread
  • trouble concentrating
  • anticipating the worst
  • irribility
  • restlessness
  • pounding heart
  • sweating
  • stomach upset
  • dizziness
  • shortness of breath
  • tremors or twitches
  • insomnia
  • surge of overwhelming panic
  • feeling of losing control or going crazy
  • heart palpitations or chest pains
  • feeling like you're going to pass out
  • trouble breathing
  • hot flashes or chills

Causes:

  • inhereted or chemical imbalences in your body

Treatment:

Behavioral therapy for Anxiety Disorders:
Cognitive behavior therapy:
  • Focuses on thoughts and behaviors
  • Helps you identify and challenge the negative thinking patters and irrational beliefs that are fueling your anxiety
Exposure therapy:
  • Confront your fears in a safe, controlled environment. As they face their fear without being harmed, your anxiety gradually diminishes.
Medication: most effective when combined with Behavioral Therapy.
Complementary Treatments:
  • Excercise 30 minutes three to five times a week.
  • Relaxation techniques: mindfulness meditation, progressive muscle relaxation, controlled breathing, and visualization.
  • Biofeedback: using sensors to measure heart rate, breathing, and muscle tension helps you recognize the bodys anxiety response so you can learn to control them.
  • Hypnosis: helps you face your fears and look at them in new ways.

Anecdote:

"A forty-year-old man had gone on a skiing trip near Denver and, while on the slopes, had begun to feel shorness of breath, profuse perspiration, faintness, and weakness. He also felt cold and had a feeling of instability. Over all the symptoms hovered a sense of unreality. He was in such a state of collapse that he had to be taken from the slopes in a stretcher and rushed to a hospital. When no physical abnormalities were found, he was told he had an 'acute anxiety attack.'"
-Anxiey Disorders And Phobias by Aaron T. Beck, M.D.

Sources:

  • Anxiety Disorders And Phobias by Aaron T. Beck, M.D.
  • helpguide.org

Recommended Best Source:

helpguide.org