Anxiety Disorders: Types, Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis, Treatment
Anxiety Disorder is a mental health condition that makes it quite difficult for a person to get through the day. Numerous anxiety-related symptoms could make it difficult for the person to perform. The anxiety may even range from nervousness to feelings of panic and dread and may even lead to rapid breathing that can cause several health problems.
Experiencing anxiety is normal, but a person with an anxiety disorder may have intense, persistent, and excessive fear or worry about different situations. The feeling of panic or anxiety in daily activities is quite difficult to control, so one must avoid the situation or places that will prevent these feelings.
Treatment is necessary regardless of the sort of anxiety you have since it benefits you in several ways.
What Is Anxiety?
Are you feeling nervous or worried about something? Are you anxious? Maybe you are getting butterflies while looking at the medical reports or tests. In life, a person may have to experience so many things that may make them anxious, which means everyone experiences anxiety from time to time.
Anxiety may happen in children and adults, and for some people, it does not last long. There are some moments of anxiety that is brief and last from minutes to days. But some people may get the feeling of anxiety, which is more than a passing worry or a stressful day.
It is normal to have anxiety, but in an anxiety disorder which is much more than regular nervousness, you might start feeling slightly afraid. Do you know when an anxiety disorder happens? It happens when-
- When anxiety interferes with the ability to function
- People often overreact when something triggers the emotions
- Cannot control the responses to the situation
These types of anxiety do not go away in weeks, months, or sometimes years and make the condition so worse, and when this happens, it is considered an anxiety disorder. Though it is quite difficult to go through these anxiety disorders, you can, fortunately, find several effective treatments.
What Are Anxiety’s Symptoms and Signs?
Anxiety symptoms can vary, and often, your body will react differently to this. Sometimes, when you feel anxious, there are chances that your body will go on high alert or look for possible danger and activate the flight or fight responses.
Consequently, some of the common symptoms which you might have during anxiety are-
- Restlessness, nervousness, or being tensed always
- Fast heartbeat
- Hyperventilation or rapid breathing
- Lethargy and weakness
- Gastrointestinal problems or digestive such as diarrhea, constipation, gas
- Desire to avoid things that may cause anxiety
- The feeling of dread, panic, or danger
- OCD or obsessive-compulsive disorder
- Anxiety surrounding the event or experience which may have occurred in the past, especially PTSD
- Consistently performing a certain task.
- Struggling to concentrate or think properly on anything but the issue you’re concerned about.
If you are facing the same effects then, it is advised to consider proper precautions and a person should get the treatment started as soon as possible. Not just that, people may even start getting panic attacks which is also a type of fear or distress. If that happens, then you might face at least any of these four symptoms-
- Shaking or trembling
- Feeling hot or cold
- Tightness or chest pain
- Light-headedness or feeling faint
- Fear of going insane or losing control
- Fear of passing away
- Choking sensation
- Gastrointestinal problems or nausea
- Tingling sensation or numbness
There are a few symptoms that one can face for anxiety which can happen in some conditions other than an anxiety disorder. It is usually the case when someone gets a panic attack, and the symptoms will be similar to a thyroid problem, breathing disorder, heart disease, and many other illnesses.
That is why people who have panic disorder are taken to the emergency rooms or the doctor’s office immediately, as there are chances that they may experience a life-threatening health condition.
Category Of Anxiety Symptoms
The anxiety symptoms are categorized in several different ways, which include-
Generalized Anxiety Disorder
With GAD, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, a person may feel unrealistic or extreme tension or worry even when nothing triggers any of these feelings. Most of the time, you may worry about different topics, which include relationships, work, career, health, school, and more. This worry may continue from one thing to the next. The symptoms of GAD include difficulty in concentration, restlessness, or insomnia.
- Panic Disorder
Severe panic attacks are common among those with panic disorder. Sometimes, these attacks are quite strong, and you may get an intense feeling compared to any other type of anxiety disorder.
You may get a feeling of terror that may happen suddenly and from a trigger, such as facing any situation you may dread. Panic attacks may even resemble heart attacks, so if you or someone you know have experienced this feeling, you should go to the emergency room. It is usually preferable to exercise caution and be cautious. There should always be a professional who can check on you.
If someone has a panic attack, they may experience Sweating, Heart Palpitations, Chest Pain, and also a feeling of choking, which may give you a feeling that they have a heart attack.
Phobias are the intense fear of some situation or an object, and some of these fears make sense, such as the fear of heights. Like any other anxiety disorder, you may look for a way to spend a lot of time just to avoid a situation like this. A specific phobia is a fear of any particular situation or object people want to avoid daily.
Some of the phobias are
- Animals such as dogs, snakes, or spiderFlying
When children or teenagers worry about being apart from someone, such as their parents, this syndrome commonly affects them. This condition happens not only in humans but also animals. Children with separation anxiety disorder may also feel that their parents will get hurt in some way and will not return to them.
Separation anxiety disorder usually happens in preschoolers. But if any adult or older children have this problem, that can be stressful too.
Causes Of Anxiety
Anxiety disorder is like a mental condition but does not come from personal weakness, problems, or character flaws with upbringing. But some researchers do not even know what exactly causes this disorder. But there are factors that can be the reasons-
- Chemical Imbalance
If you have long-lasting or serious stress, that may change the chemical balance controlling the mood. You may experience a lot of stress that may lead to anxiety disorder.
- Environment Factors
Trauma can set off an anxiety condition, especially in those vulnerable to it genetically.
There is a familial tendency for anxiety problems. Like eye color, they may be inherited from one or both parents.
- Medical Condition
Certain lung, heart, and thyroid diseases can exacerbate or induce symptoms similar to anxiety disorders. When discussing anxiety with your doctor, it’s crucial to undergo a thorough physical examination to rule out any medical disorders.
Effects Of Anxiety on The Body
There are many things that may develop an anxiety disorder which are known as risk factors. While some of these hazards are unavoidable, others are modifiable.
There are several risk factors for various anxiety disorders.
- Any other mental health condition, such depression, raises the chance of anxiety disorder.
- Physical, emotional, and sexual abuse during childhood is linked to anxiety disorder.
- Living in a traumatic event increases PTSD and cause panic attack in people.
- If there is any negative or stressful event that has happened such as losing a parent in early childhood, it increases the risk.
- You may experience anxiety and feeling overburdened if you are worried about someone’s health all the time or are caring for somebody who is ill.
- Social anxiety in adults and teenagers will be associated with childhood withdrawal and shyness towards unknown people and environments.
· When someone has negative perceptions about themselves, it may lead to social anxiety.
Home Remedies to Cure Anxiety
- Stay active
Doing daily exercise is not just good for your physical health but also for you are mental. People with anxiety disorders are protected if they do high physical activity.
For several reasons, exercise can divert your attention from something that causes anxiety. Regular exercise also increases the heart rate and enhances willpower and concertation, which helps in certain symptoms. It will be good for your mental health if you exercise every day.
- Steer clears of alcohol
Consumption of alcohol may take a person’s edge off because it is a natural sedative. But numerous research has revealed a connection between drinking alcohol and anxiousness.
Heavy drinking may interfere with the balance of neurotransmitters, which will be responsible for positive mental health. It creates an imbalance that leads to certain anxiety symptoms. Alcohol may even disrupt your sleeping schedule so you should cut it out so you can have a good night’s sleep.
- Quit smoking
Whenever a smoker faces any stressful situation, then they may reach for a cigarette. Like drinking alcohol taking cigarette drag may cause worse anxiety situations over time.
There can be several ways to relax, and quitting cigarettes is one of them. There are many rehabs or medicine which you can consider that will help you leave the cigarette.
- Limit the intake of caffeine
If you have chronic anxiety, you should know that caffeine can be your enemy. It may cause nervousness and is not good for you. In my research, it has been found that caffeine may make things worse and cause panic attacks in people.
When you eliminate caffeine, then it may improve anxiety symptoms. If your intake of caffeine is in moderate amounts, then that will be considered safe for most. But make sure you are not taking it in high amounts.
- Meditate and practice the mindfulness
Meditation aids with present-moment awareness, which involves taking note of all kinds of ideas. It may also lead to calm behavior and increase the ability to tolerate thoughts and feelings. With this, you can get some relief from stress and anxiety, and it acts as an anti-depressant.
When To See a Medical Professional?
It is hard to tell when the situation of anxiety gets serious or a bad day which makes you feel worried or upset. Without proper treatment, taking the anxiety away is impossible, and the condition may even worsen. That is why treating anxiety becomes so much better, and the symptoms may get worse.
There are some situations when you should visit the doctor, and those are-
- You believe that your excessive worry is affecting how you live your life, including work, school, your social life, etc.)
- You struggle to regulate distressing worry, fear, or anxiety. You also feel depression and turn to alcohol or drugs for comfort.
- You think your anxiety is caused by a mental health issue because you are thinking about or acting suicidally.
It is always preferable to see a medical professional who can assist with your therapy and maintain your mental health.