The most common of all mental health conditions
What Is Anxiety?
Anxiety is a condition in which an individual experiences excessive worry and distressing thoughts. Anxiety can range from mild to severe, and while everyone experiences anxiety at some point, nearly one in five people (18% of the US population) will develop an anxiety disorder, possibly needing treatment. There are several types of anxiety disorders including generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), panic disorder, social anxiety disorder, phobias, and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). No matter the type, pervasive untreated anxiety can easily become debilitating.
Negative Effects of Anxiety
Because anxiety manifests in persistent worry, feelings of fear, and anticipation of negative outcomes, individuals often look for ways to self-medicate. This can lead to frequent drug or alcohol use that began as an attempt to take the edge off an anxiety condition. Substance use creates its own problems, and individuals with anxiety may find themselves suffering from addiction as well. This dual diagnosis is often referred to as co-occurring disorders.
Anxiety can impair a person’s ability to keep jobs and maintain relationships, causing them to withdraw from social connections and places that trigger their symptoms. However, counseling, therapy, and sometimes assistive medications can allow individuals with anxiety to heal and even thrive again.
Anxiety disorders affect 40 million US adults every year.
– The Anxiety and Depression Association of America
Anxiety by the Numbers
According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America:
- Anxiety disorders affect 40 million US adults every year.
- Generalized Anxiety Disorder affects 3.1% of the US population, but less than half are receiving treatment.
- Women are twice as likely to be affected by anxiety disorders as men.
- Social anxiety disorder affects 15 million US adults every year.
- Over 2 million US adults suffer from obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD).
- People with an anxiety disorder are three to five times more likely to go to the doctor and six times more likely to be hospitalized for psychiatric disorders.
Symptoms of Anxiety
To be diagnosed with the most common form of anxiety, generalized anxiety disorder, an individual must experience symptoms most days for a period of six months. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, the following are symptoms of GAD:
- Feeling restless, wound-up, or on-edge
- Being easily fatigued
- Having difficulty concentrating; mind going blank
- Being irritable
- Having muscle tension
- Difficulty controlling feelings of worry
- Having sleep problems, such as difficulty falling or staying asleep, restlessness, or unsatisfying sleep
Individuals with other anxiety disorders may experience a number of additional symptoms, such as a sense of panic, heart palpitations, fixation on a particular subject or object, or intense fear.
Anxiety Treatment at The Meadows
If you or a loved one is in need of anxiety treatment, we’re here to help. The Meadows specializes in treating anxiety along with other mental health conditions and substance use disorders. We are equipped to provide research-backed treatments as well as individual therapy, group therapy, and experiential therapies. Call us today to find out more about our program and how we can help you or a loved one begin your journey of recovery.
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