By Sebhat Ayele MCCJ
As it was stated in the other negative feelings, it is normal to feel anxious, everyone feels anxious now and then. It’s a common feeling that can make one uncomfortable. For example, one may feel nervous when faced with a problem at work, before taking a test, or before making an important decision. A very close emotion to anxiety is worry. Psychologically, worry is part of Preservative Cognition. In other words, it is a collective term for continuous thinking about negative events in the past or in the future that the brain has accumulated. As an emotion “worry” is experienced from anxiety or concern about a real or imagined issue: often personal issues such as health or finances, or external broader issues such as environmental pollution, social structure or technological change. It’s a natural response to anticipated future problems. Excessive worry is a primary diagnostic feature of generalized anxiety disorder. Physical symptoms of social anxiety/worry disorder may vary from person to person. But the common ones are blushing, profuse sweating, trembling, nausea or other abdominal distress, rapid heartbeat, shortness of breath, dizziness or lightheadedness, headaches, and feelings of detachment and loss of self-control. Another important variation is that not everybody reacts in the same way to different imagined or real situations. For example while one blushes before the first date, another one may tremble before the same event.
Another relevant issue is that normally women react differently than men on the same reality. The real cause of social anxiety disorder is an intense fear of being scrutinized and negatively evaluated by others in social or performance situations. Some literally feel sick from fear in seemingly non-threatening situations. When the brain feeds the heart with such perceived or real fear the emotions flare out of normality. As indicated above, the disorder is often selective. Some people may have an intense fear of talking to a salesperson or giving a speech, but they may be comfortable in other similar settings. Other people may become anxious during routine activities such as starting a conversation with a stranger or a person in authority, participating in meetings or classes, or dating and attending parties. Anxiety disorders are different, though. They are a group of mental illnesses, and the distress they cause can keep one from carrying on with life normally. For people who have one, anxiety and worry are constant and overwhelming, and can be disabling. But with treatment, many people can manage those feelings and get back to a fulfilling life.
Types of Disorders
Anxiety disorder is an umbrella term that includes different conditions:
one feels terror that strikes at random. During a panic attack, one may also sweat, have chest pain, and feel palpitations (unusually strong or irregular heartbeats). Sometimes one may feel like choking or having a heart attack.
Social anxiety disorder:
It is also called social phobia, this is when one feels overwhelming worry and self-consciousness about everyday social situations. He/she fixates about being judged by others or on being embarrassed or ridiculed. It has a lot to do with public relationships and associations. One feels an excessive fear of not being to the normal standard of social relationships.
One feels intense fear of a specific object or situation, such as heights or flying. The fear goes beyond what’s appropriate and may cause the person to avoid ordinary situations. Homophobia enters in the same category. One feels exaggerated fear of facing new people of different cultures or ethnicity.
Generalized anxiety disorder
one feel excessive, unrealistic worry and tension with little or no reason. It all depends what the brain feeds the emotion center, what we normally ascribe to the heart.
It is very difficult to pinpoint the real cause of anxiety. Actually, researchers don’t know exactly what brings on anxiety disorders. Like other forms of mental illness, they stem from a combination of things, including changes in ones brain and environmental stress, and even ones genes which may be ancestral. The disorders can run in families and could be linked to faulty circuits in the brain that control fear and other emotions. Part of the brain has a natural function of protecting anxiety and fear. When that part becomes faulty it causes serious emotion disorders.
If one has symptoms, a doctor will examine and ask for the medical history. The doctor may run tests to rule out any physical discomfort or medical illnesses that might be causing the symptoms. No lab tests can specifically diagnose anxiety disorders, if they are caused by emotions.
On that case the doctor is going to refer the patient with anxiety disorder to a psychiatrist, psychologist, or another mental health specialist. Those doctors are specialized in diagnosing such symptoms. They ask questions and have tools for testing the disorder. Then they find out if one has an anxiety and fear disorder. Once asserted the Psychiatrist then considers how long and how intense the symptoms are when diagnosing the person. They check, as well, to see if the symptoms disable the person from carrying out your normal activities and relationships. Many people have wrong perceptions about seeing psychiatrists. Many automatically conclude that one has mental disorders or grave crisis. That is why many people shy to talk about their emotional problems. It has been already underlined that emotional disorders are quite normal in life and happen every now and then.
Most people affected with anxiety or worry disorder try many therapies. As our famous therapists McKay G. and Dinkmeyer D underline the most effective therapy is Cognitive behavioral therapy: This is a certain type of psychotherapy that teaches you how to recognize and change thought patterns and behaviors that trigger deep anxiety or panic. In this column “Manage Your Emotions”, from the outset our experts repeatedly stressed that in dealing with the emotions one has to deal first with the brain that feeds wrong and imagined information to the emotion center. The brain has constantly to replenish information that it is normal to have such life situations.
Before seeking medical treatment for emotion disorders the best is Psychotherapy: This is a type of counseling that addresses the emotional response to mental illness. A mental health specialist can help the patient by talking about how to understand and deal with once anxiety disorder. That is why medical experts always say that many antidepressants can work for anxiety and worry disorders. They include escitalopram (Lexapro) and fluoxetine (Prozac). Certain anticonvulsant medicines (typically taken for epilepsy) and low-dose antipsychotic drugs can be added to help make other treatments work better. Anxiolytics are also drugs that help lower anxiety. Examples are alprazolam (Xanax) and clonazepam (Klonopin). They’re prescribed for social or generalized anxiety disorder as well as for panic attacks. Whatever medication one takes, it is important that they are prescribed by knowledgeable doctors.
There are, as well, other tips that may help to control or lessen ones symptoms: We just list them down to help our readership to apply natural treatment which is often effective:
1. Cut down on foods and drinks that have caffeine, such as coffee, tea, cola, energy drinks, and chocolate. Caffeine is a mood-altering drug, and it may make symptoms of anxiety disorders worse.
2. Eat right, exercise, and get better sleep. Brisk aerobic exercises like jogging and biking help release brain chemicals that cut stress and improve one’s mood.
3. Sleep problems and anxiety disorder often go hand in hand. Make sure getting a good rest is a priority. Follow a relaxing bedtime routine. Talk to family or a personal doctor if you still have trouble sleeping.
4. Ask your doctor or pharmacist before taking any over-the-counter medicines or herbal remedies. Many contain chemicals that can make anxiety symptoms worse.
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