Anxiety is a feeling of intense or excessive worry. This worry may focus on a specific situation or fear, or it may be general uneasiness.
Everyone experiences anxiety at some time during their lives. However, when anxiety is severe and/or persistent, it becomes a disorder. Several different anxiety disorders exist, including:
Scientists don’t fully understand the cause of anxiety disorders. However, certain risk factors may increase the likelihood of developing an anxiety disorder. Risk factors for anxiety disorders include:
Different types of anxiety disorders may cause different symptoms. However, some of the most common symptoms of these disorders include:
People with anxiety often experience symptoms in the form of an “attack.” However, symptoms may also be continuous.
Dr. Horne diagnoses anxiety based on the results of a physical exam and a psychiatric evaluation. You’ll receive the formal diagnosis of an anxiety disorder if you meet the criteria outlined in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders.
Most patients with anxiety disorders benefit from psychotherapy. The purpose of this therapy is to help you understand your anxiety and control your symptoms. The most effective form of psychotherapy for patients with anxiety is cognitive behavioral therapy, which focuses on teaching you to respond differently to anxiety triggers.
In some cases, Dr. Horne may also recommend medication to patients who struggle with anxiety. Common medications used for anxiety include sedatives and certain antidepressants. You may take these medications daily, or you may take them only as needed.
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