According to experts, anxiety is a normal human emotion that everyone experiences during stressful times. But normal anxiety becomes pathological when it causes significant subjective distress and impairment of functioning. Anxiety disorders can cause such agony that it interferes with the patient’s ability to lead a normal life. An anxiety disorder is a mental illness accompanied by constant, overwhelming worry, and fear.
People can develop such disorders as a result of genetics or the way they were raised. Anxiety disorder is a blanket term that includes different types of anxiety conditions. The most common are: Generalised anxiety disorder (GAD)This disorder involves excessive unrealistic worry and tension, even if there is little or nothing to cause anxiety. When this situation lasts for six months or longer, it may be Generalised Anxiety Disorder or GAD.Social anxiety DisorderThis type of anxiety disorder involves irrational fear of performing activities in the presence of other people. Patient is afraid of his own actions being viewed by others critically, resulting in embarassment or humiliation.
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)This can happen after traumatic experiences like rape, abuse, physical assaults, accidents or a natural dissaster. Symptoms include clear flashbacks and accute depression.PhobiasA phobia is an extreme, illogical, obsessive fear of a specific object, situation or activity, which leads to to persistent avoidance of the particular object, situation or activity. The patient recognises the fear as unjustified but is unable to control the fear and gets very distressed.
There are many specific phobias. Acrophobia is a fear of heigh places. Agrophobia is a fear of public places. Claustrophobia is a fear of closed places. Zoophobia is fear of animals. Xenophobia is fear of strangers.
Algophobia is fear of pain. Patients try to avoid what they are afraid of. If they cannot, they may experience panic, rapid heartbeat, shortness of breath, trembling and a strong desire to escape.Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD)People with OCD have troubling thoughts they cannot control. Some people feel that they must perform senseless rituals. Common compulsions include excessive hand or cloth washing and locking the door repeatedly.
Panic DisorderPanic Disorder is a type of anxiety disorder that occurs when the person experiences repeated episodes of extreme panic. There are some strong panic attacks that can emotionally cripple a person. The attacks can last from seconds to minutes and can give paralyzing aftershocks. The episode is usually sudden in onset, lasts for a few minutes and is characterized by very severe anxiety.
Clasically, the symptoms begin unexpectedly. Someone having a panic attack may experiences rapid pulse, sweating, chest pain, feeling of unreality, shortness of breath, dizziness, nausea and/or pounding heartbeat.Types of Treatments Psychotherapy, Relaxation, Medication, and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy are the forms of treatments that help to reduce the level of symptoms and prevent the unnecessary negative thoughts which a patient is experiencing.All of us have experienced some form of anxiety, but there are some people who are going through the acute conditions and whose anxiety never fades away. It starts disrupting your daily life and makes it difficult to live a normal life.
This is what anxiety disorder is. It is important to get proper anxiety disorder treatment before the condition becomes dangerous and needs urgent medical attention.