Anxiety disorders are one of the most common mental health disorders and needs to be dealt with in order to lead a stress free life. All of us face certain levels of anxiety on a regular basis yet when it starts to disrupt our routine lives, it becomes a threat.
The most common types of anxiety disorders are :
- Generalised Anxiety Disorder : Worrying is uncontrollable upsetting and stressful for at least six months . A patient with GAD would worry about all sort of things and would expect the worst.
- Post Traumatic stress disorder : PTSD occurs soon after a very traumatic event and is one of the worst sort of anxiety.
- Obsessive Compulsive disorder : OCD comprises of obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviours. Patients with OCD constantly seek reassurance.
- Body Dysmorphic Disorder : People with BDD dislike their part of body like skin, hair , nose, chest , or stomach. The flaw may be insignificant but a person with BDD perceives it as prominent and hence experience distress.
- Phobia : Phobia is an illogical fear of a particular object or situation.
- Health Anxiety : A person with health anxiety is preoccupied ith insignificant health concerns.
- Panic Disorder : In a panic disorder, the client experiences a racing heartbeat, breathlessness and the like without any physical cause or event.
Causes of Anxiety disorder :
Past or childhood experiences : People who experience physical or emotional abuse, loss of parent, neglect, bullying or social exclusion can develop anxiety disorders.
Current life situation : A lot of stress , long working hours, facing financial issues, and unemployment can lead to the development of anxiety disorders.
Physical or mental problems : Physical and mental problems can lead to anxiety in an individual and cripple his/her daily activities.
Drugs and Medication : Taking a lot of drugs and medication can lead to the development of anxiety disorders.
Beating Anxiety :
Talking to someone you trust : Talking about your innermost feeling with a trustworthy individual can help in beating anxiety. It provides an emotional release and builds hope in the individual dealing with anxiety.
Managing worries : People with anxiety disorders tend to obsess about their worry . Hence they can set aside specific times in the day for worrying. This would give them a relief from the obsession.
Breathing exercises : Deep breathing exercises canhelp relieve anxiety symptoms by providing relief to the mind of the individual.
Maintaining a diary : Keeping a diary and jotting down thoughts can help identify negative thought patterns which can then be replaced by positive thought patterns.
Seeking Therapy : Going to a mental health professional is important since they are trained to provide therapy such as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy which challenges negative self beliefs.
Anxiety disorders are treatable if handled in a right way along with a proper treatment plan.
[ The author is a Counselling Psychologist, based in Dehradun. She can be reached at this email id firstname.lastname@example.org ]