Anxiety – Article

People who experience anxiety are likely to have excessive and/or exaggerated worry about everyday life events with no obvious reasons for the worry.  The worry is often unrealistic or out of proportion for the situation such as thinking worst case scenarios might happen or worries around health, money, family, work, or school.    Daily life can becomes a continuing state of  fear and dread which interferes with work, school, social activities, and relationships.

Symptoms

Anxiety affects the way a person thinks and can lead to physical symptoms as well. Symptoms can include:

  • Excessive ongoing worry and tension
  • An unrealistic view of problems
  • Restlessness or a feeling of being “edgy”
  • Irritability
  • Muscle tension
  • Headaches
  • Sweating
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Nausea
  • The need to go to the bathroom frequently
  • Tiredness
  • Trouble falling or staying asleep
  • Trembling
  • Being easily startled

Some people may develop other anxiety disorders (such as panic disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder and phobias) suffer from depression and/or abuse drug and/or alcohol.

Treating Anxiety

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)

This therapy helps you to notice how your thoughts create your anxious feelings.  How you feel will affect how you react (your physical behaviour and your body’s reactions).

CBT can teach you how to change the thought to a positive, true or self nurturing statement, this is likely to result in less worry and anxiety.

Relaxation Techniques

Deep mindful breathing (mindful – to focus only on your breathing).  By focusing/thinking only about your breath in and out, you can slow down the worrying thoughts.  This happens because you cannot think of two things at once.  Mindful breathing also slows down your heart rate allowing you opportunity to lessen body tension and increase emotional stability. 

Using Coping Imagery by visualising calming scenarios, may assist to control the muscle tension that often accompanies anxiety.

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