Have you ever sat down and wondered why you were experiencing extreme trembling before an exam? Or why your palms got so sweaty before that job interview? This feeling is known as anxiousness. It is normal to have some anxiety; it is a natural way for the body to prepare itself for an important event. Anxiety activates our fight and flight response that helps us notice dangerous situations and focuses our attention on staying safe.
You would also notice how you start to calm down once the event begins, breathing gets more manageable, and the heart stops thumping.
An anxiety disorder is a bit different than that. A disorder goes beyond the realms of normal nervousness and a slight fear from time to time. If you feel anxious for no apparent reason, if you find it hard to control your worries, this might be a case of an anxiety disorder.
Here are three ways to determine whether you have an anxiety disorder or not.
- It starts to interfere with your ability to function
- You tend to overreact when something triggers your emotions
- It’s hard for you to control responses to situations
There are several types of anxiety disorders.
Generalized anxiety disorder:
Feeling excessive and unrealistically worried for little to no reason.
This is the type of social anxiety in which children who may generally talk just fine with their family do not speak in public like school.
An intense fear that instigates a panic attack is a panic disorder. During a panic attack, you feel chest pain and have a pounding heartbeat; it may get tough to breathe, and you might even sweat excessively. It may sometimes even feel like you are choking or having a heart attack.
This is an intense fear of being in a place that seems hard to escape—for example, panic in an airplane, public transportation, or in line with a crowd.
Social Anxiety Disorder
This is also known as social phobia. This is when you feel an overwhelming worry and self-consciousness about everyday situations. You obsessively worry about what one is thinking about you, and you fear being judged or ridiculed.
You see a little kid crying every time they are taken away from their caretaker? Well, they aren’t the only ones. If you feel incredibly anxious at even the thought of your loved one leaving your sight, then chances are you suffer from separation anxiety.
Medication-induced anxiety disorder:
Consumption of certain medications, illegal drugs, or even withdrawal from certain medications may trigger some symptoms of an anxiety disorder.
Intense fear of a specific object or a situation is a specific phobia. This includes heights, flying, or anything non-threatening, for that matter. The fear goes beyond the appropriate worry of the situation.
Anxiety disorder is a serious mental illness that often goes undetected in individuals. It is a disorder that needs immediate attention and treatment, before things get worse.