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Anxiety

Anxiety is that feeling of fear, worry or nervousness you experience when you’re about to do something challenging or take a life changing decision. Everybody experiences anxiety, it is a completely normal experience.

If you’re feeling anxious frequently, and it’s getting in the way of your sleep or your daily life, you’re experiencing severe anxiety.
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Types of Anxiety

You may experience more than one type of anxiety.
Understanding what type of anxiety you’re experiencing is the first step to recovering.
Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)

Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)

GAD is the most common form of anxiety. It is an extreme, intense and absurd worry usually associated with everyday life. People with GAD overly anticipate disaster about everyday things such as money, friendship, health issues, work and life.
The physical effects of GAD include fatigue, nausea, headaches, muscle tensions, restlessness, insomnia and sweating.
Panic Disorder

Panic Disorder

If you’re experiencing recurring panic attacks, it might be possible that you are having a Panic Disorder. Panic Disorder is also accompanied by behavioral changes such as restlessness. This happens because one is overly anticipating the next panic attack.
The physical effects of Panic Disorder include rapid heartbeat, perspiration, dizziness, hyperventilation, chest pains and crying.
Social Phobia

Social Phobia

You might have felt stage fear or shyness at least once in your life. It is absolutely normal. But if you’re scared of being around people altogether, you might be experiencing Social Phobia. Social Phobia is an intense fear of being in a social situation and constantly thinking of being judged by other people.
If you are afraid of dating, parties, meetings and hanging out with a group of people, you might be experiencing Social Phobia.
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

If you have experienced something unsettling in the past, physically or emotionally and keep revisiting that memory, you might be going through Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. PTSD occurs after a traumatic life event and sometimes lasts for years after the event. It is best advised to seek professional help if you think you a effected by PTSD.
The physical effects of PTSD include severe insomnia and constant fatigue.
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

If you tend to have certain thoughts or tend to do certain routines repeatedly and are unable to control them, you might be experiencing OCD. Eating only out of a particular plate maybe mild OCD, but refraining from eating if that plate is not available is acute OCD.
Examples of very severe cases of OCD are – washing of hands every 10 minutes and constantly checking if the door is locked. Basically an obsession that affects daily life.

Causes of Anxiety

Different types of anxiety have different symptoms. However, anxiety in general has certain distinct symptoms that can be identified easily.
External Causes

External Causes

Accidents, Physical abuse, Sexual harassment, War experiences
Internal Causes

Internal Causes

Excessive worry, Unnecessary obsessions, Traumas

What can Anxiety trigger

Anxiety when left unattended for a long time, can fester into several co-existing conditions. These can then affect the person more negatively making overcoming it more complex. Know the conditions that can and might co-exist with anxiety.

Depression

Anxiety and depression frequently coexist. At least 85% of people with major depression also have significant anxiety symptoms.

Worry

The most frequent symptoms are worry, inner tension or mental pain.

Panic Attacks

About 33% of people with depression also experience panic attacks during their depressive episodes.

Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)

With Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD), the percentage of people who have major depression is even higher.

Diagnosis and treatment

Different types of anxiety have different symptoms. However, anxiety in general has certain distinct symptoms that can be identified easily. Everybody worries or gets the odd case of butterflies in the stomach. But are you missing out on opportunities and happiness because of fears and worries? Is anxiety interfering with your life? While moderate anxiety can be limiting, severe anxiety can be crippling.

Get a better perspective of your anxiety levels with this test.

How can I help myself

Admitting that you are experiencing anxiety is the first step to a speedy recovery. You have come to the right place, you can find all the help you need right here.
Talk to someone

Talk to someone

If you know what kind of anxiety you are experiencing, you could talk to a friend or a family member about it.
Hospital

Seek professional help

In case your anxiety is so severe that friends and family members cannot help, you can see a mental health specialist.
Ask again. When you know “I’m fine, thank you” isn’t true.#DobaraPoocho

How can I help someone else

You might feel confused, helpless or frustrated when communicating with someone experiencing anxiety.
Listen

Listen

Sometimes, all that a person who is stressed wants is someone who will hear their story. Take time and listen to what they have to say. Just listen with an open mind and in a non-judgmental way.
Use physical gestures

Use physical gestures

Smiling, holding hands, hugging, lending a shoulder etc. are gestures that help bring down stress levels. Use them to your advantage.
Play games

Do fun activities, together

It would be great if you could offer to join the person in some activity he or she enjoys – it could be early morning walks, enjoying a meal at their favourite restaurant, or going out to watch a play or even going on a trek.
Follow up

Follow-up

Show them that you genuinely care. They might not like it all the times but you need to stay in touch.
Seek help

Encourage to seek help

Tell the person that it is a good idea to seek help and explain how it is beneficial. It’s better if you can convince the person to take an appointment with a mental health professional and also offer to accompany them.

FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions
What triggers anxiety?
There are many factors that trigger anxiety. It could be genetical, psychological or past traumatic experiences.
How do I find out if I have an anxiety disorder?
If you are excessively worried about everyday situations and challenges, you may be suffering from anxiety disorder. You can take a simple quiz to find out what kind of disorder you might have.
Is there any treatment for anxiety disorder?
Anxiety disorder can be treated through medication, counselling and sometimes a combination of both. You don’t have to be admitted to a hospital. However, you might have to go for psychotherapy sessions and continue on the medication prescribed to you until you get better.
What do I need to tell my mental health specialist on the first visit?
  • Observe and write down any behavior change or symptoms you think you are experiencing
  • If you are on any antidepressants, take them along with you
  • Make sure to ask your mental health specialist all the questions you have in mind
  • Take a friend or family member along with you
  • Be expressive and tell your mental health specialist exactly what you feel

Unlike a physical illness, anxiety disorder cannot be treated completely by your therapist alone. With their help you need to work towards getting better. Stick to the medication your therapist provides and don’t skip a psychotherapy session even if you are feeling well, unless you are advised otherwise.
Where can I get professional help for anxiety disorder?
You can consult a specialist in psychology, a psychotherapist or a psychiatrist, depending on your condition. Your general physician would not be able to help you, but can suggest an expert. You can also find a therapist here.
Are stress and anxiety the same?
There are plenty of books and websites from where you can get to know about anxiety. Take a look at our Updates section below to know more.
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