Fear and anxiety are normal human emotions, designed to keep us alert about possible dangers and help us perform on tasks that requires our full attention and performance. When anxiety and worry becomes excessive, however, it can invade our lives and interfere with our daily functioning and may give rise to psychological conditions that are referred to as Anxiety Disorders.
Anxiety Disorders are the most common psychiatric conditions in the United States. Approximately 13% of American adults suffer from one or more forms of anxiety disorders. Anxiety disorders tend to run in families and are caused by combination of factors related to biological and genetic predisposition and/or life experiences. Many symptoms of anxiety mimics other medical conditions. This often leads to misdiagnosis and improper treatment.
While anxiety disorders can be extremely debilitating, they are very treatable. When left untreated however, it can become chronic and more severe. It can lead to other problems such as depression, substance abuse, eating disorders and can cause stress-induced medical conditions such as chronic headaches, digestive problems and etc.
Anxiety disorders effect our perception of events, producing worry and fear that are excessive to those events. Cognitive-Behavioral treatments, which are supported by research as the recommended form of treatment for anxiety disorders, are found to be effective in correcting our perceptions and changing our reactions in ways that are more proportionate to the situation. I employ this model of treatment in combination with other approaches such as Mindfulness-based and insight oriented therapies as appropriate. Furthermore, when appropriate, I will work closely with your primary care physician and will provide referral for psychiatric medication evaluation .
If you have experienced the following symptoms on a persistent basis for several months or more and have found that it has interfered with your daily functioning, you may be suffering from an anxiety disorder and should consider consulting with your doctor or a mental health professional:
- Shortness of breath, racing heart, shaking, sweating
- Fear of losing control or going crazy
- Excessive worry
- Excessive fear and avoiding specific objects or situations
- Avoiding social situations
- Fear of leaving the house or being in places where you can not escape
- Recurrent thoughts or images that would not go away
- Feeling compelled to repeat certain actions, such as hand washing, etc.
- Reliving upsetting events from the past
For more information about anxiety disorders and treatment, you can refer to the following Website: