Anxiety is a normal part of life and can range from mild to severe. As the body’s natural reaction to stress, it often appears in times of important decisions, difficult conversations and in moments that force you from your comfort zone. But for a person experiencing an anxiety disorder, fleeting moments of fear can linger and worsen, hindering daily functions of life, including areas affecting personal and professional relationships.
While symptoms vary for individuals based on the type of anxiety, common diagnoses include:
- Generalized anxiety disorder – characterized by feelings of excessive anxiety, fear or worry about a variety of personal matters that can interfere with daily routines in life
- Social anxiety disorder – an extreme fear of being judged by others in social situations that can lead to embarrassment and often avoidance of group or public activities
- Phobia – an extreme fear or dislike to certain objects or circumstances
- Panic disorder – sudden moments of intense fear that occur unexpectedly and rapidly, often triggered by fear toward an object or situation
Receiving a medical diagnosis for anxiety is the best way to understand the most effective therapies or treatments. For more generalized anxiety disorders, here are some helpful ways to cope, according to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America:
· Remember that many things are beyond your control.
· Engage in mindful activities, such as yoga, listening to or playing music or getting a massage.
· Eat healthy meals and energy-boosting snacks throughout the day.
· Avoid or limit alcohol and caffeine.
· Get plenty of sleep to feel rested every day.
· Incorporate exercise into your daily life.
· Take deep breaths and count to 10 slowly.
· Be proud of a job well done and don’t fixate on perfection.
· Find reasons to laugh and keep a positive outlook.
· Volunteer or be active in your community.
· Keep a journal of anxiety triggers and talk to a professional, if possible.
If you have concerns about anxiety, contact your primary care provider. Call 918-579-DOCS (3627). For information about an online video visit, go to uticaparkclinic.com/virtualcare.