Anxiety may be described as a negative state of mind, which often triggers a range of nervous actions, including pacing, brooding and psychosomatic health issues. Characterized by feelings of dread, anxiety is decidedly unpleasant, as its sufferers tend to obsess over bad things which may not happen, including fears of imminent mortality. Anyone who has an irrational fear of death may be suffering from anxiety or an anxiety disorder.
Differing from fear, which usually has realistic foundations, anxiety is a pervading sense of being worried and ill at ease, and it’s generally an overreaction to a circumstance that may not really be as threatening as it seems.
Typical side effects and symptoms which accompany anxiety include restlessness, tiredness, concentration problems and muscle strain. Considered an abnormal state, anxiety may be quite severe in scale, and therefore quite debilitating (with respect to leading a normal life).
Anxiety is One of Many Moods
When anxiety, which is a mood, becomes chronic and/or very intense, it may classify as a mental disorder. This type of disorder features constant and disproportionate worry that is general in nature, rather than related to known or perceived threats or problems.
Referred to as generalized anxiety disorder, or GAD, this type of mental issue happens when intense and irrational worries become prevalent. Every person is different, so levels of anxiety will vary from man to man or woman to woman. Children and teens may also experience this “future-oriented” syndrome.
Types of Anxiety Disorders
Under the umbrella of anxiety disorders, there are an assortment of subtypes, including phobias, social anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder. People who suffer from one or more of these subtypes may also suffer from certain physical symptoms which are manifestations of their stress and worry.
Examples of symptoms and side effects which may be present when anxiety exists include tiredness, sick stomach, chest discomfort, racing heart (or irregular heartbeat), headache and/or tension headache. The body will perform certain actions when threats occur (or perceived threats, as with anxiety).
When this happens, blood pressure may rise, the heart rate may increase, sweating may begin, blood flow to larger muscle groups may accelerate, and immune and/or digestive functions may be slowed down. Those with physical symptoms of anxiety may be very pale, sweaty and shaky, and they may have dilated pupils. As you can see, an assortment of health problems, some of which are quite debilitating, may come along with an anxious state of mind, and these are classified as somatic health problems.
For certain people with anxiety, panic attacks may occur. These terrifying episodes will generally render the afflicted helpless as they struggle to control their bodies (due to the physical symptoms of their panic attacks). Some panic attacks will be severe, while others will be mild or moderate.
More Facts about Anxiety
Anxiety in adults may differ from anxiety in children or teens. A doctor should be consulted in order to appropriately diagnose and treat anxiety and anxiety disorders. In addition, anxiety may present differently in men and women.
Physicians who suspect that patients may suffer from generalized anxiety disorder will usually need to go through a range of medical interviews and physical examinations. Treatments for this disorder may include lifestyle alterations, psychotherapy and prescription medicine. Patients should be certain to discuss the pros and cons of various medications, in order to be sure that they understand any side effects which may be caused by these prescriptions.
In order to resolve GAD (generalized anxiety disorder), some level of treatment may be required. Lots of support groups exist which are there to assist those who experience anxiety in its various forms and subtypes.