Understanding Anxiety Disorder: Types, Symptoms and treatment

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What is Anxiety Disorder?


Worrying over a problem is quite normal. Everyone has some or the other stress. But when this temporary stress and anxiety makes a permanent place in your mind not letting you live a normal life, is when you may have an Anxiety disorder. For a person with an anxiety disorder, the anxiety does not go away. This feeling disturbs your personal space not letting you to focus, eat and sleep well. Anxiety Disorder is a serious mental illness. But with treatment, it is possible to live a happy life.

Identify whether a feeling is occasional or so overwhelming that it interferes with your ability to lead a normal life.

Not every fear or stress is an Anxiety Disorder.

What are the types of Anxiety Disorder?

You may experience symptoms of more than one type of anxiety disorder. So you should seek proper consultation at an early stage and get proper treatment.


Here are the types of anxiety Disorder


1. Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)


People with this disorder worry excessively (for many months) even when there is nothing to provoke the anxiety. People feel restless, fatigue, face difficulty in concentration, gets irritated easily, muscle tension, insomnia etc.

Even the minor thing becomes the focus of anxiety. They constantly feel that something terrible will happen.

2. Social Phobia/ Social anxiety disorder


Every one of us gets nervous or feel awkward in front of strangers. But you cannot relate this situation to Social anxiety disorder because you feel nervous for something occasional.

However, when someone is extremely self-conscious about everyday social situations (eating a meal, talking to someone) then this can be referred to social anxiety disorder.

The reason behind this overwhelming worry and self-conscious about a situation is the feeling of rejection, being judged, criticized and humiliation. They have a feeling that if something goes wrong they could be embarrassed or lead to ridicule.

A day of worry is more exhausting than a week of work- John Lubbock


3. Panic disorder


People get panic disorder suddenly and the panic attacks are so intense that a person can go crazy.
When someone gets panic attacks repeatedly for more than a month, then a person is said to have a panic disorder.

The pain is so intense that the person feels that he had a heart attack and would die. Some experience chest pain, excessive sweating, dizziness, shortness of breath, feeling of choking etc.


4. Post traumatic Stress disorder


You might have met people who experience a tragic death, sexual abuse, torture, etc. But are still in the terror of that situation. These people develop a set of reaction over any such traumatic event in their life. In post-traumatic stress disorder, there is a constant feeling of intense fear, terror, horror and helplessness.


5. Specific phobia


The inappropriate level of fear for a particular event, place or thing is specific phobia. To name few, Phobia of height, water, fire, insects etc.

This situation creates everyday common problem for you


6. Obsessive compulsive disorder

Obsessive compulsive disorder

OCD is a common and long-lasting disorder in which a person has recurring thoughts (obsession) and behavior (compulsion) that he or she feels the urge of repeating it. Mostly obsession and compulsion, but are together found. It is very rare that a person has only one. Read more on OBSESSIVE COMPULSIVE DISORDER: Meaning and facts




The Symptoms depend on the type of anxiety disorder, but general symptoms include:

* Excessive worry about everything

* Chronic indigestion

* Stage fright, nervousness or any intense Fear

* Been Self-conscious

* Panic attacks

* Flashbacks of traumatic events* Perfectionism

* Perfectionism

* Compulsive behavior

* Persistent self-doubt

* Staying awake at night (Sleeping problems)

* Recurring anxious thoughts in mind

* Negative thoughts in mind or suicidal thoughts* Fatigue

* Fatigue

* Difficulty in concentration

* Nausea

* Raised blood pressure

* Fast or irregular heart beat




Although, Treatments are individual based. Your health care professional will use one or a combination of any these treatments.

Always seek a licensed Psychotherapist for any treatment and therapy.


Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT)

This is a highly effective therapy. The patient is involved in his/her own recovery.
Focuses on: Identifying, understanding and changing thinking and behavior patterns.
Recovery time: You can find changes in 12 to 16 weeks (depends on the individual)


Exposure Therapy

A form of CBT (Read above)

Focuses on: Reducing fear and anxiety responses.

In this therapy, patients are exposed to a feared situation and then teach them how to handle the fear and behave normally.

This Therapy most is effective for phobia disorder.

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT)

They teach Patients how to accept things and live at the moment.

Here strategies are used so that patients experience things without judgment along with a commitment.

This helps them to cope up with unwanted thoughts and feelings.


Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT)

Integrating cognitive-behavioral techniques with concepts from Eastern meditation, dialectical behavioral therapy, or DBT, combines acceptance and change.

Focuses on: skills for managing stress, interpersonal effectiveness and handling emotions.


Interpersonal Therapy (IPT)

This therapy addressed interpersonal issues of the patients. They gather information about the nature of a person’s depression and then work for it for approx 12 to 16 one-hour weekly sessions.

Also, interpersonal therapy is a short-term supportive psychotherapy.

**Medical Treatments and other sources of support like family and friends, Support groups and online forums, Relaxation training etc. are always available options.


If you like our article, please feel free to like, share and comment.

You can also write to us your personal anxiety experience. Thanks!


Recommended: A journey from depression to happiness: Changing life in 11 simple ways



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