Anxiety Disorders


What is Anxiety?

Anxiety is a normal emotion, which all of us experience as part of being human. Anxiety is a feeling of fear or apprehension about something bad occurring. It can look and feel different for different people, but it usually associated with physical sensations such as muscle tension, agitation, or an increase in heart rate/blood pressure. Often people will feel the urge to avoid and will have a lot of worry thoughts.

What is an Anxiety Disorder?

An Anxiety Disorder is when the anxiety causes ongoing and significant distress and may be impacting on a person’s day to day functioning. A qualified mental health professional can help you figure out whether you meet official criteria for an anxiety disorder. Regardless of whether you meet criteria for an Anxiety Disorder, if you are feeling impacted by anxiety, it can still be helpful to learn strategies to manage this.

Types of Anxiety Disorders

What does treatment for an Anxiety Disorder look like?

Treatment of an Anxiety Disorder often starts with Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT). This type of therapy involves learning strategies to physically calm your body, to then be able to focus on the anxiety thoughts in order to create a more balanced perspective. Following this, your therapist will possibly look at ways to manage avoidance and how to handle yourself in anxiety-provoking situations. Sometimes your therapist may then shift treatment to the underlying causes of your anxiety. For this aspect of treatment, therapists may call on other therapies such as Schema Therapy and Eye Movement Desensitisation Reprocessing (EMDR).