Chest feeling tight and finding it hard to breathe? Are your palms clammy? These are some symptoms of an acute anxiety attack. Anxiety has become so much more prevalent in today’s society due to the go, go, go attitudes that we tend to abide by.
Anxiety is known by everyone under the bright yellow sun. People have a natural instinct to feel that panic or worry some feel for a number of reasons. Think about how you would feel if your teacher dropped a pop quiz on you and you didn’t read the chapter it was on. What about if you couldn’t get a hold of a family member that you knew was going on a long trip? Just because you feel some anxiety definitely doesn’t mean that you have a mental health disorder. On the other hand, according to the Anxiety Disorders of America, this is actually the most common mental illness in America.
What Is Does That Anxiety Word Mean?
In short anxiety is defined as a psychological disorder with behavioral and physiological components. There are so many different feelings that come along with anxiety and they can affect every single aspect of your life. It is your body’s basic and animalistic emotional response to a loss of certainty, not knowing, loss of control, etc.
Anxiety Disorders 101
Essentially anxiety can be the root of any mental disorder but in these following disorders it is the main component. Don’t use these to self diagnose, (unless you’re a doctor) I am not a doctor of psychology and am just trying to give you some things to look for if you suspect you or a loved one may be feeling that something just isn’t right.
*OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder) – Rituals and routines are the main characteristic in this disorder. Typically, this person suffering has severe obsessive thoughts about certain fears. In order to keep this “fear” at bay this sufferer will typically do the same thing over and over again and if this ritual or compulsion is not performed or not performed correctly there is a severe sense of panic and this lack of ritual can lead to a person not being able to perform everyday tasks. One example that I have seen was a young girl afraid of her mother dying. To prevent her mother from dying she would go around her house and make sure every light switch was down and tough every single doorway at the top right hand corner. These two things are completely unrelated yes, but that is how some people comfort their minds. Other more common examples are that of hand washing and reorganizing.
*Social Anxiety Disorder – This disorder is kind of living in high school every single day all day long. A person with this disorder is in constant worry of social judgments. Often times these people may take forever to get ready to go out of the house if they even go out at all. Social phobics are afraid of actions that may happen concerning them in turn causing social ridicule or non acceptance. Basically a need to people please and often times this person will suffer from low self esteem.
*Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) – This disorder is one of the only anxiety disorders that does not need a trigger. Living with this disorder means living with an everyday unrealistic group of worries accompanied by tensions without any provoking. Getting out of bed when living with this disorder can even be hard and often times makes going through with everyday tasks next to impossible.
This Is Me, What Now?
It’s not the end of the world. More that half of the population is living with some sort of anxiety disorder whether it is severe or minor. There is always help! Talk to your family physician or even your friends and family. It is surprising the things that you can learn about other people when you open up about yourself a bit. One of your loved ones could be suffering from the same thing. Be patient, none of these treatments are quick fixes, they aren’t meant to be.