Anxiety disorders are currently the most common form of mental illness in the United States, affecting more than 40 million adults. With how common anxiety and depression are, you’re not alone in your feelings and experiences.
Finding the right tools to deal with and treat anxiety — via therapy and/or medication — can make coping with and recovering from anxiety significantly easier.
Everyone experiences anxiety differently. Not only are there multiple different kinds of anxiety disorders, symptoms of anxiety can be mental and physical. With that being said, there are some common symptoms across the board:
People with anxiety disorders often worry a great deal or have a sense of dread. These symptoms usually last six months or longer. These feelings can stem from anywhere; school, work, family troubles, or finances just to name a few. Keeping these feelings in check can be extremely challenging and draining.
Some of the most common physical symptoms a person can get when struggling with anxiety involve their heart. When a person with an anxiety disorder goes through a stressful situation, they can find their heart rate going up or feel an irregular heart beat. This feeling is especially common during panic and anxiety attacks. Anxiety attacks last longer than panic attacks, but somebody with a panic disorder can experience panic attacks regularly.
Anxiety can quite literally keep you up at night. Problems falling asleep and/or staying asleep are quite common for those with anxiety. Unfortunately, sleep problems can also further contribute to anxiety, which means you run the risk of getting caught in a cycle.
Even if you manage to get a good night’s rest, anxiety can cause fatigue throughout the day. Anxiety can be emotionally and, by extension, physically exhausting. This makes getting through the day harder, and causes even further fatigue. As well, your mood can quickly change when you’re tired. This means you’re at greater risk for developing depression, which is co-morbid with anxiety disorders.
It’s very easy to see how being anxious can make you feel irritable. Getting lost in anxious thoughts might make it easier for a person to get angry and lash out at others. Those living with anxiety also might find they lose their patience quicker than they used to. This common symptom can have a significant effect on a person’s social life and personal relationships.
Anxiety can be caused by many things and can come in the form of several different disorders, but it can also be treated. Treatment for each anxiety disorder can be similar due to the shared symptoms, and usually includes a combination of medication and therapy.
Medication can only be provided through a medical doctor, such as a psychiatrist, who can make a proper diagnosis. It’s important to know that there is NOT a one-size-fits-all treatment when it comes to medication. It takes a specific amount and sometimes combination of medications to really help ease your symptoms. Your psychiatrist can work with you to find the perfect anxiety treatment tools for you.
Therapy is one of the most effective ways to address anxiety. It’s a helpful resource, because it gets to the bottom of what’s causing a person’s anxiety and can provide solutions. A therapist trained in anxiety disorders is able to give you the skills and healthy coping mechanisms to better deal with your anxiety. There’s even a chance to overcome it entirely through therapy.
METRO’s Behavioral Health team stresses the importance of asking for help. Anxiety disorders are common and treatable, and there is no shame in reaching out for new resources.
Metro Inclusive Health offers individual and group support that is accessible and convenient with in-person and TeleHealth options. Most insurances are accepted with self-pay options also available.
Therapists are LGBTQ+ and gender-affirming and trained in cultural competency. Together, we can build a brighter and more hopeful future, with a path to overall mental health and wellness.