If you identify with several of the following signs and symptoms, and they just won’t go away, you may be suffering from an anxiety disorder.
- Are you constantly tense, worried, or on edge?
- Does your anxiety interfere with your work, school, or family responsibilities?
- Are you plagued by fears that you know are irrational, but can’t shake?
- Do you believe that something bad will happen if certain things aren’t done a certain way?
- Do you avoid everyday situations or activities because they cause you anxiety?
- Do you experience sudden, unexpected attacks of heart-pounding panic?
- Do you feel like danger and catastrophe are around every corner?
Anxiety is the unpleasant feeling of fear that we all have experienced at some point in our lives. It is becomes a disorder when it is frequent and becomes overwhelming.
The physical effects of anxiety may include a fast heart rate, heart palpitations, tension, nausea, chest pain, tension headaches and shortness of breath.
As the body prepares to deal with the perceived threat blood pressure, heart rate, perspiration and blood flow to the major muscles groups is increased. External signs of anxiety may include sweating, trembling and pallor.
For someone who suffers from anxiety this may lead to a panic attack during which the person feels as though they are dying or losing control.
There are six major types of anxiety disorders, each with their own distinct symptom profile: generalized anxiety disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, panic disorder (anxiety attacks), phobia, post-traumatic stress disorder, and social anxiety disorder.
Treatment may involve medication, talking therapy or a combination of the two.