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Do you often experience feelings of extreme nervousness? Are you ever feeling completely overwhelmed by the emotions and experiences in your daily life? Have these rollercoaster emotions caused you to have panic attacks?
In our busy and rushed world it’s very common to have feelings of anxiety and extreme stress. For example, at least one in six people in South Africa suffer from anxiety at some point in their lives. Knowing the difference between merely feeling“stressed”and experiencing a possible anxiety disorder is crucial to finding the right treatment.
Making the decision to consult a psychologist is not an easy one and takes a lot of courage. However, once you’ve made that decision, you’ll find the resolution you need. Here are a few signs to take into consideration when evaluating your current state of mind.
Mental Symptoms of Anxiety
Here are few mental symptoms of anxiety:
- Uncontrollable, sometimes irrational over thinking.
- Feelings of panic or dread. Constantly expecting the worst to happen.
- Constant feelings of irritability.
- Sleep problems that occur regularly.
- Changes in appetite, either eating too little or eating too much.
- Feeling the need to escape your current situation.
- Panic attacks for reasons you can’t explain.
We all feel anxious at times but know that we don’t experience these feelings in the same way. Some people may experience some, or all of these feelings. It’s important to discover how YOU deal with stress.
Physical Symptoms of Anxiety
Anxiety has a few physical symptoms as well. These can include the following:
- Fast, sometimes irregular heartbeat. Having that “heart in your throat” feeling.
- Hot flushes.
- Sweating not related to the weather.
- Constant fatigue and lack of energy.
- Feelings of dizziness which often lead to fainting.
- Constant stomach aches.
Possile Causes of Anxiety
Anxiety can be caused by mental or physical circumstances. These types of circumstances are defined as instances that interfere with your normal day to day life.
- Financial stress.
- Emotional trauma, such as death or illness of a loved one.
- Phobic disorders such as phobia of public speaking.
- Stress or side effects as a result of medical condition.
- Effects of being in an abusive relationship.
How is Anxiety Diagnosed?
Doctors will do a complete physical exam. This will enable doctors to identify or rule out any other illnesses that could be causing your symptoms. Your doctor will also evaluate your previous medical history.
Your doctor will then refer you to a mental health professional such as a psychologist to continue your evaluation. It’s important to be open about the feelings or circumstances that cause your feelings of anxiousness. Be descriptive of your feelings and specific about when they occur.
The most effective way to treat and recover from an anxiety disorder is to seek help as early as possible. Together with your psychologist, there are steps that you can take to alleviate the pressures of an situation or condition. Take a deep breath and let the professionals help you!