Did You Know?

According to the ADAA, anxiety disorders are the most common cases of mental illness among U.S. adults, affecting roughly 40 million citizens. Though these disorders are highly treatable through both cognitive behavioral therapy and medication, around 36.9% of those diagnosed actually receive treatment. Occasional feelings of worry are common and a normal part of life—you might feel anxious before making a life decision, facing problems at home, or dealing with the stress of issues in the workplace. For individuals with an anxiety disorder, their feelings of uneasiness exceed that of a temporary fear. Anxiety disorders are commonly linked to depression, and oftentimes cause issues with completing everyday activities.

Symptoms of Anxiety Disorders

·     Having overwhelming feelings of panic or doom

·     Experiencing an ongoing sense of coming danger

·     Having an increased heartrate

·     Dissociation

·     Nausea, vomiting, decreased appetite

·     Hyperventilation, feeling shaky, sweating

·     Having excessive sleep issues

·     Feeling weak or exhausted

·     Concentration difficulties

 Common Anxiety Disorders

·     Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD). 6.8 million adults are diagnosed with GAD, and this disorder is often accompanied by major depression. GAD is characterized by excessive and reoccurring worry about a wide variety of things. Individuals suffering from this disorder find it difficult to control their unnecessary fear and will obsess over possible outcomes for more days than not for at least six months or more, as well as possess at least three (or more) symptoms of what categorizes anxiety disorders.

·     Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD).15 million U.S. adults are affected by SAD. Individuals suffering from SAD have an intense fear of being judged, rejected, or simply misunderstood in a social situation. The anxiety causes them to avoid social interactions, but when the interaction cannot be avoided, it causes them extreme amounts of distress and panic. SAD is also commonly associated with agoraphobia.

·     Panic Disorder (PD).6 million adults are affected by PD. People that suffer from Panic Disorder often have panic attacks in seemingly-random outbursts. People affected by PD have reoccurring fears of having another panic attack, which causes daily activities to be harder to complete. 

Anxiety’s Relationship with Depression

Anxiety and depression are very much like the evil twins of mental health. People with anxiety are at least three times more likely to suffer from other mental disorders—like depressive disorders. 85% of those diagnosed with major depression are also diagnosed with GAD; the same study shows that the other 35% of those diagnosed had symptoms of Panic Disorder. Though there are still differences, there are many similarities between Depressive Disorders and Anxiety Disorders—such as exaggerated or elevated feelings of dread.

Help is Available

If you or a loved one is experiencing symptoms of anxiety or depression, help is out there. As mentioned earlier, Anxiety Disorders are among some of the most treatable mental health disorders. Symptoms of anxiety and depression can be improved by cognitive behavioral therapy or medication, and the first step to take is to seek the help of a medical professional.