What Is Anxiety?
Out of nowhere, my heart would start racing—I’d start sweating and my stomach would cinch up.
Anxiety is your mind and body’s natural response to events that are threatening. The right amount of anxiety can help you, but too much anxiety can interfere with your life.
Some worry and anxiety is normal for everyone. But when anxiety is severe, lasts for several weeks and includes symptoms that keep you from doing things you usually would, it may be something to discuss with your health care professional.
Anxiety symptoms are real. They are not just in your head. They can be treated, and they are nothing to be ashamed of.
Common Symptoms of Anxiety
Thoughts that don’t go away
Avoidance of people places or things
Shortness of breath
Fight or Flight
As long as humans have been on earth, when they have been confronted with threatening situations, their bodies have had automatic responses to prepare them to fight the threat or run away from it.
Increased heart rate
More blood flowing in the muscles of the arms and legs, possibly causing shaking or jitters
Less blood flowing in the digestive system so more blood is available to the arms and legs, possibly causing dry mouth or abdominal discomfort
Dilated pupils (for better vision)
Constricted blood vessels in the skin and open sweat glands, leading to paleness or clamminess
In our brains, the hypothalamus, when stimulated, directs nerve cells to fire and starts a chemical release increasing adrenaline, noradrenaline and cortisol in the blood and causing the reactions listed above.
In people with depression, bipolar disorder and/or anxiety disorders, the fight or flight response may be stimulated more often and for longer periods of time than in people without these illnesses. This means that more things are perceived as threatening. An out-of-balance fight or flight response can cause a person to
Have a real physical reaction to everyday people, places or things
Believe danger is around every corner
Be convinced something terrible will happen if certain things aren’t done a certain way
Feel constantly keyed-up and on-edge
Avoid everyday people, places or things in an effort to avoid the anxiety response
All of these things can interfere with people’s lives so much that they aren’t able to do things they would like to do and their relationships are strained or lost.
You are not alone.
Anxiety can begin early in life for people with depression or bipolar disorder. More than half the people said they had experienced anxiety some time between birth and age 18. Even if you can’t remember a time when you didn’t feel worried or fearful, there are things you can do today to work toward a life that is not controlled by anxiety.
What Is Anxiety?
Anxiety is a normal reaction to stressful situations. But in some cases, it becomes excessive and can cause sufferers to dread everyday situations.
This type of steady, all-over anxiety is called Generalized Anxiety Disorder. Other anxiety-related disorders include panic attacks—severe episodes of anxiety which happen in response to specific triggers—and obsessive-compulsive disorder, which is marked by persistent invasive thoughts or compulsions to carry out specific behaviors (such as hand-washing).
Anxiety so frequently co-occurs with depression that the two are thought to be twin faces of one disorder. Like depression, it strikes twice as many females as males.
Generally, anxiety arises first, often during childhood. Evidence suggests that both biology and environment can contribute to the disorder. Some people may have a genetic predisposition to anxiety; however, this does not make development of the condition inevitable. Early traumatic experiences can also reset the body’s normal fear-processing system so that it is hyper-reactive to stress.
The exaggerated worries and expectations of negative outcomes in unknown situations that typify anxiety are often accompanied by physical symptoms. These include muscle tension, headaches, stomach cramps, and frequent urination. Behavioral therapies, with or without medication to control symptoms, have proved highly effective against anxiety, especially in children.
- Anxiety Attacks Symptoms (treasureinman.wordpress.com)
- Anxiety Management Solutions (eathealthystayhealthy.wordpress.com)
- Some more free therapy: Anxiety (jwolffblog.wordpress.com)
- Yourwellness Magazine Looks at Ways to Overcome Social Anxiety (prweb.com)
- Social Anxiety Disorder: Symptoms and Solution (comptaenligne.wordpress.com)
- The Anxiety Epidemic (anxietykey.com)
- Causes Of Severe Anxiety And Nervous Breakdown (comptaenligne.wordpress.com)