Anxiety is more than just feeling stressed or worried. Stress and anxious feelings area common response to a situation where we feel under pressure, they usually pass one the stressful situation has passed or been removed. An estimated 40 million adults in the U.S., or 18%, have an anxiety disorder. Approximately 8% of children and teenagers experience the negative impact of an anxiety disorder at school and at home.
Anxiety is when these anxious feelings don’t subside – they are ongoing and exist without any particular reason or cause. These feelings can impact your daily activities such as work, school, relationships, and parenting. There are several types of anxiety disorders – generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder, and social anxiety disorders are some examples.
SYMPTOMS Like with any mental illness, people with anxiety disorders experience symptoms differently.
• Feelings of apprehension or dread
• Feeling tense and jumpy
• Restlessness or irritability
• Anticipating the worst and being watchful for signs of danger
• Pounding or racing heart and shortness of breath
• Upset stomach
• Sweating, tremors and twitches
• Headaches, fatigue and insomnia
• Upset stomach, frequent urination or diarrhea
Evaluation for an anxiety disorder often begins with a visit to a primary care provider. Some physical health conditions, such as an overactive thyroid or low blood sugar, as well as taking certain medications, can imitate or worsen an anxiety disorder. Types of mental health treatments psychotherapy, medications, including anti-anxiety medications and antidepressants, and complementary health approaches, including stress and relaxation techniques.
Things You Can Do If you have anxiety, you may feel exhausted, helpless, and hopeless. But as you begin to recognize your anxiety and begin treatment, you will start to feel better. Here are other tips that may help you or a loved one during treatment: • Postpone major life changes • Resolve personal conflicts as they arise. • Take part in enjoyable activities and learn to relax.