Everyone suffers from anxiety at some point in their lives. This is a normal thing. Anxiety, sadness and grief keeps on coming and going in life. We should not be discouraged by these things and deal with them in proper ways instead of giving up. Feeling anxious is absolutely normal. But being anxious all the time increase the problems, and not decrease them, and is also bad for health, mentally and physically, both.
Substance abuse or addiction clients feel a lot of anxiety. At PRCenter, our qualified, trained and well experienced team help clients to overcome their anxiety and to be productive in their lives. First, I will tell you what anxiety is and then, I will give you some tips for it.
What is Anxiety?
Anxiety is an emotion just like any other emotion, sadness, joy or excitement. Anxiety is a natural response by our brain and body, whenever we feel there is danger or when we experience stress. It appears as a reaction to threats. It is worry related to future that “what will happen”.
According to American Psychiatric Association “Anxiety is an emotion characterized by feelings of tension, worried thoughts, and physical changes like increased blood pressure”.
Types of Anxiety
Generally, there are two types of anxiety:
- State Anxiety
- Trait Anxiety
It is temporary and situational anxiety. It depends on particular emotional state. It can come and go and its ever-changing mood component. State anxiety has cognitive and somatic component.
Cognitive state is the mental manifestation which means how much negative thoughts a person can have or its simply the thought component of anxiety.
Somatic state is the physical manifestation of anxiety. It is the perception of bodily changes that are happening as a result of threatening situation or stress.
Trait anxiety is part of personality and it is a stable trait of an individual. Those who are sensitive can feel heightened anxiety as compared to normal people, and they are called as anxious people. Anxiety is a fixed component in their personality.
Science behind Anxiety
Whenever someone feels stressed or faced a dangerous situation, his brain produces an alarm which is known as “fight-flight-freeze” response. As a result of this alarm, a person decides to fight with the dangerous situation, or to run away from there to a safe place, or some people can’t even think of fight or flight and just get freeze there.
When there is a threatening situation, there are some physiological changes in the body as a result of activation of one of the processes in the brain called as “activation of sympathetic nervous system”. During this activation a person is in aroused state and decides whether to fight, flight or get freeze. This system automatically stops after some time when the parasympathetic nervous system in the brain gets activated.
Signs and symptoms of anxiety
During the activation of sympathetic nervous system, signs and symptoms of anxiety are manifested. These include:
- Being stressed, nervous or restless
- Increased heart rate
- Rapid breathing
- Tightening of chest
- Obsessive thinking
- Body temperature may fall or body becomes hot
These are the common sign and symptoms for a normal level of anxiety. But if anxiety level increases and the intensity of these symptoms increases then it becomes dangerous and falls in the category of clinical anxiety which requires help from mental health professionals.
Examples of normal anxiety situations
- Being stuck in traffic
- Food not cooked on time
- Small fight with a friend
- Starting a new job
- Moving to a new place/home
Normal manageable anxiety is good as it motivates us to do or complete tasks. Normal anxiety lasts only for sometime and it goes away easily or when the situation is over. Normal anxiety is for real situations and due to this anxiety, one finds solutions to the current problems. But, if the anxiety does not go away and it is not manageable or a person feels anxious without any realistic reason, then it becomes a problem which requires professional help. At Treatment Center Karachi the team of psychologists and psychiatrist help clients to manage their anxiety by talk therapy and/or medicines.
Clinical anxiety is more than temporary worry and thinking. It is abnormal level of anxiety where one cannot calm down and the anxiety is unmanageable. Clinical anxiety is called as anxiety disorders. Anxiety disorders can lead to drug and alcohol addiction, and substance abuse can also lead towards different anxiety disorders. They can both occur at the same time too.
Following are the anxiety disorders classified in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual for Mental Disorders, 5th edition.
- Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)
- Specific Phobia
- Panic Disorder
- Separation Anxiety Disorder
- Selective Mutism
- Social Anxiety disorder / Social Phobia
- Substance/Medication induced anxiety disorder
- Anxiety disorder due to another medical condition
Mental illnesses such as anxiety disorders have adverse effects on the quality of life. If these disorders do not get treated early, they will become more severe and after some years the person can loss their ability to be in his/her senses. Drug addiction can be a cause of anxiety disorders or anxiety disorders leads a person towards drug addiction. Drug addiction and mental illnesses impact the lives adversely. They should be treated and managed as early as possible. If you know someone who is suffering from mental illnesses or drug addiction, refer them to PRC Clifton for treatment.
Self help tips for managing anxiety
- Talk to someone and find solutions
- Light exercise, meditation, yoga
- Writing thoughts and feelings
- Learn problem solving skills
- Positive comments to self
- Deep breathing
- Learning about anxiety
- Mindfulness techniques
If you are not able to manage your anxiety on your own then you can always reach out for help. We are here to listen and help you manage your anxiety. Sometimes people don’t know that they are suffering from anxiety disorder and they keep on struggling on their own. But long-time, chronic anxiety issues lead towards more severe mental health disorders. If you know anyone suffering from anxiety, addiction issues or other mental health problems, you can refer them to Parvarish Recovery Center. For more information regarding our services feel free to call at 0341-1959599 or visit our treatment rehabilitation centers.