Anxiety Disorder: Causes, Symptoms, Treatment

Anxiety is a natural reaction. But if this anxiety interferes with daily life, then you might experience what is called an anxiety disorder or anxiety disorder. Learn more about anxiety disorders ranging from causes, symptoms, diagnosis, and how to overcome them!

What Is Anxiety Disorder?

Anxiety disorder or anxiety disorder is excessive anxiety that can affect a person’s daily activities. This condition can be experienced by children and adults. Keep in mind, this anxiety disorder can cause suffering and interfere with a person’s ability to lead a normal life.

Anxiety disorders often involve episodes of sudden and intense feelings of anxiety and fear or terror that peak in a few minutes. The highlight of this episode is a panic attack.

Causes of Anxiety Disorder

The cause of anxiety disorders can be a combination of several factors including:

  • Excessive activity from the part of the brain that controls emotions and behavior.
  • Serotonin compounds which are not balanced in the brain.
  • Have experienced trauma, such as domestic violence and harassment.
  • Use illegal drugs and consume alcoholic beverages.

The exact cause of anxiety disorders is unknown, but anxiety disorders like other forms of mental illness are not the result of personal weakness, character disability, or poor education. The researchers suspect this disorder is caused by a combination of many factors, including changes in chemicals in the brain and stress.

Like other brain diseases, the cause of anxiety disorders can be triggered by problems in the functioning of brain circuits that regulate fear and emotions. Research has shown that severe stress can change nerve cells in brain circuits.

Another study showed that people with anxiety disorders experience changes in brain structure that control memories. In addition, anxiety disorders can also occur in one family, which means this can be inherited from parents.

Risk Factors for Anxiety Disorder

There are several conditions that can increase a person’s risk of having a satisfaction disorder, including:

  • Trauma
  • Stress due to certain diseases
  • Stress that builds up
  • Have a certain personality
  • Other mental health disorders
  • Having relatives who have anxiety disorders
  • Using illegal drugs and alcohol

Types of Anxiety Disorder

Not only the symptoms of anxiety disorder that you should recognize, here are some types of anxiety disorders, including:

1. Panic Disorders

People with this condition have feelings of terror that strike suddenly and repeatedly without warning.

Symptoms of a panic attack include sweating, chest pain, palpitations (fast or irregular heartbeats), and feelings of choking or choking. This disorder also risks making you have a heart attack.

2. Social Anxiety Disorders

Also known as social phobia is a disorder that involves excessive worry and self-awareness about everyday social situations.

Worry here is often caused by fear of being judged by others, or fear when you will behave shamefully or mock.

3. General Anxiety Disorders

This is excessive worry and an unrealistic tension. This condition occurs even though there are only a few problems that cause anxiety or even there is no trigger at all.

4. Specific phobias

This is an intense fear of a particular object or situation, such as height or a narrow place.

The level of fear experienced usually does not threaten the condition because the actual situation is something that is normal for most people. This disorder can cause you to avoid some daily activities.

Previously, types of mental disorders such as OCD and PTSD were also included in anxiety disorders, but now the American Psychiatric Association in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) has classified the two in different different categories.

Symptoms of Anxiety Disorder

Anxiety disorders have very diverse symptoms. Symptoms of this condition can affect sufferers, both psychologically and physically.

Symptoms of anxiety disorder or symptoms of anxiety disorder include:

  • Feelings of panic, fear, and excessive anxiety.
  • Having trouble sleeping.
  • Cold or sweaty hands or feet.
  • Hard to breathe.
  • Heart palpitations (heart beats fast or irregularly).
  • Can not be quiet and calm.
  • Dry mouth.
  • Numbness or tingling in the hands or feet.
  • Nausea
  • Muscle tension.
  • Dizzy

When to see a doctor?

Anxiety disorders may not always require medical treatment. But if you experience the conditions below, then do not hesitate to consult a doctor.

These conditions include:

  • Feeling too worried to disturb work, relationships, or other aspects of your life.
  • Your fears, worries or anxieties make you annoyed and difficult to control.
  • Feeling depressed, having problems with alcohol and drugs, or having other symptoms of mental disorders.
  • Feel that your anxiety can be associated with physical health problems.
  • Having thoughts of suicide.

Anxiety disorders may not get better on their own and can get worse if you don’t seek help. Consult your condition to the doctor before it gets worse.

Anxiety Disorder Diagnosis

Your doctor will check whether your anxiety disorder can be related to your physical health. The doctor will check for medical symptoms that require treatment. If the anxiety disorder is severe, you will be referred to a psychiatrist.

The psychiatrist will provide a diagnosis and also recommend the treatment of anxiety disorders that is most suitable for you. Psychologists can also help diagnose anxiety disorders and provide counseling.

The psychologist or psychiatrist will conduct a psychological evaluation to help diagnose anxiety disorders. This evaluation involves discussion of your thoughts, feelings, and behavior. Sometimes anxiety disorders come with other mental disorders that are difficult to diagnose.

After that, the psychiatrist will compare your symptoms according to DSM-5 criteria to support the diagnosis of this condition.

How to Overcome Anxiety Disorders with Lifestyle Changes

Before entering into the treatment of anxiety disorders psychologically and medically, it should also be noted that symptoms of anxiety disorders can also be relieved by self-care in the form of lifestyle changes.

Here are some lifestyle changes that can be made to help relieve symptoms of anxiety disorders:

  • Physical activity. Regular exercise can help improve mood and maintain physical health, this activity can help reduce symptoms of anxiety disorders.
  • Adjust your diet. Consumption of healthy foods and balanced nutrition can help you be healthier physically and mentally.
  • Avoid alcohol and drugs. These substances have the potential to worsen anxiety disorders so they must be avoided.
  • Stop smoking and reduce caffeine consumption. Nicotine and caffeine can also worsen symptoms of anxiety.
  • Stress management and relaxation techniques. Relaxation techniques that can relieve symptoms of anxiety disorders include visualization techniques, meditation, and yoga.
  • Make sure you get enough sleep. Enough and quality sleep can affect your mental state.

Anxiety Disorder Treatment

Psychotherapy and medication are usually the main treatments for anxiety disorders. Someone may get both at the same time, and also accompanied by lifestyle changes as mentioned above.

1. Psychotherapy

Psychotherapy is also known as speech therapy or psychological counseling. This therapy can be an effective treatment as a way to deal with anxiety disorders. One of the most commonly done is cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT).

CBT is the most effective method of dealing with generalized anxiety disorder. Through this therapy, sufferers will recognize and understand the impact of problems, feelings, and behaviors related to one another.

2. Medicines

Discuss with your doctor about the type of medication that is suitable for your condition, for example the duration of treatment to be taken and its side effects.

Some types of anxiety disorder medications that are usually given include:

  • Pregabalin. This drug is classified as an anticonvulsant which is usually used to treat epilepsy.
  • Benzodiazepines. Drugs that fall into this sedative class should be avoided by patients who consume alcohol or illegal drugs.
  • Antidepressants. Includes selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) or serotonin and noradrenaline reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs). This is the most common drug in the treatment of generalized anxiety disorder.

Complications of Anxiety Disorder

Anxiety disorders not only make a person worry, but can also cause or worsen other mental and physical conditions such as:

  • Substance abuse
  • Difficulty sleeping or insomnia
  • Digestive problems
  • Chronic headache
  • Depression
  • Social isolation
  • Problems at school or work
  • Poor quality of life
  • Suicide

Prevention of Anxiety Disorders

There is no sure way to predict the symptoms of anxiety. However, the following steps can be taken to reduce the effects of anxiety disorder symptoms:

  • Seek help early. If you already feel symptoms, don’t wait, the more you are allowed to eat, the mental state can be increasingly difficult to overcome.
  • Stay active. Undergo a fun activity and make you comfortable very well. Enjoying social interaction can reduce your worries.
  • Avoid alcohol and drug use. If you are already experiencing an addiction to this substance, immediately consult an expert to overcome it.

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