Feeling worried is a normal part of everyday life, the act of worrying has helped us survive for thousands of years. Worry triggers a “fight or flight” response which protects us from dangers and uncertainty. But when does worry become anxiety?
Sometimes our protective system goes into overdrive. This system is when the intensity of our worries are bigger than the size of the actual problem, or when our worries get in the way of everyday activities. This, however, is when we need to explore if there is an underlying anxiety disorder.
The feeling of anxiety may slightly differ from person to person, however there are a number of common symptoms. Individuals may experience a number of the below symptoms.
difficulty concentrating and remembering things
mind racing, finding it hard to think
excessive worry about the past, present or future
a sense of impending panic, danger or doom
avoiding situations that make you feel anxious
breathing rapidly or shortness of breath
muscle tension and headaches
difficulty sleeping and nightmares
feeling tense, wound up and edgy
feeling tired or weak
increased heart rate
stomach or chest pain
hot and cold flushes
Types of Anxiety Disorders
Anxiety disorders come in different forms. Depending on the type of symptoms, anxiety may fit in one of the below categories:
generalised anxiety disorder
obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD)
separation anxiety disorder
post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
Anxiety is common, but it is treatable. If symptoms are left untreated, there is a higher risk of increasing isolation and depression. There is a lot of evidence for the effectiveness of psychological therapy in reducing symptoms and long term effects of anxiety. If you think you might be suffering from depression and would like support to improve your life, you can contact us at Your Psych Centre via phone, email or drop in to our office to arrange to meet with one of our trained psychologists for a confidential discussion.
No referral is needed to make an appointment. However, you can arrange for an appointment with your GP to discuss your mental health and the support which can be available through Medicare to access treatment services. If you are eligible for a Mental Health Care Plan, your GP can provide this to you to bring along to your session which will allow you to access a rebate through Medicare.