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What is an anxiety disorder? 

Anxiety disorders are the most common mental health disorder in America and can affect adults, adolescents, and children. Anxiety disorders are characterized by excessive fear and anxiety, and behaviors related to these feelings, such as avoidance of situations that cause anxiety.

Anxiety disorders can take many different forms including:

  • Generalized Anxiety
  • Social Anxiety
  • Separation Anxiety

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How do I know if I have an anxiety disorder?

While anxiety and fear are natural and normal feelings, anxiety disorders interfere with an individual’s ability to function and cause distress. Excessive anxiety can prevent the pursuit of personal or professional goals, disrupt relationships, and cause unpleasant physical symptoms. You may have an anxiety disorder if you experience the following in a way that is disruptive to your life or well being:

  • Racing thoughts and expecting the worst
  • Muscle tension
  • Avoidance of situations that make you feel anxious
  • Sweaty palms
  • Upset stomach
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Shaking or trembling
  • Chest tightness or pain
  • Fatigue
  • Irritability 

How is anxiety treated?  

The following treatment options have been proven to be effective for anxiety disorders:

  • Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT)
  • Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT)
  • Mindfulness
  • Medication

Research has found that CBT is an effective therapy for anxiety disorders. Medication can be used with therapy for relief from anxiety symptoms. Mindfulness-based therapies alone or in combination with CBT have also been proven to be effective in the treatment of anxiety disorders.  

Many of the Thriving Center of Psychology clinicians specialize in the treatment of anxiety and can also connect you with qualified medication providers. If you’re ready to begin treating your anxiety, contact Thriving Center of Psychology by clicking the online schedule or calling our offices.