We all exhibit a bit of anxiety from time to time. It’s a normal part of living.
However, there are instances in which someone may feel they cannot control their emotions or thoughts. Anxiety-ridden individuals may suffer from panic attacks, become restless, or worry excessively.
If you are experiencing persistent worry and fear, it is possible you are suffering from an anxiety disorder. Consider meeting with a doctor in-person or via telehealth to get the proper diagnosis and help – it can be life-changing!
What is Anxiety Disorder?
Anxiety disorder is a mental health disorder characterized by repetitive episodes of sudden feelings of terror, fear, and intense anxiousness that peak within minutes, often causing panic attacks.
According to a statistic from the National Institute of Mental Health, an estimated 2.7% of adults in the United States experienced a panic attack in the past year.
Anxiety disorder may manifest in symptoms and limitations beyond panic attacks. Share your experiences with your physician to get the best treatment available.
What Causes Anxiety?
Getting anxious is a result of a wide range of social, biological, and personal causes. The way we each handle stress and anxiety depends upon our life experiences and habits.
Turning to substance abuse and excessive alcohol use can shape how we handle anxiety. Traumatic situations can cause psychologically damaging events that go beyond one’s ability to cope.
As a result, anxiety can push the mind to its breaking point, leaving lasting damage that can be difficult to result.
Security and stability are feelings all humankind like to feel. When someone is experiencing instability in their life or current situation, they may experience stress and anxiousness.
Some examples of life events that commonly cause anxiety include:
- The death of a loved one
- Job loss
- Illness of a family member
Any change can set off new feelings of anxiety, but anxiety disorder tends to run in families. Your genetics play a vital role in the blueprint of your life and what your natural tendencies may be. In fact, about 30-40 percent of anxiety disorder variability is related to a genetic disorder.
If you have a family history of anxiety, you are experiencing life changes, and/or you are feeling significantly anxious, it may be time to search for a doctor to treat your anxiety. You can even seek treatment. Online doctors can chat with you securely and privately via HIPAA compliant texting. Care is now available wherever you are and telehealth makes it much more accessible.
How might your doctor treat you for anxiety?
Treatment for Anxiety Disorder
The treatment decision is dependent on how significant the disorder has on the ability to function in your daily life. Nonetheless, the treatment process can be generalized into two options: psychotherapy and medication. Both treatments together will yield better results than the use of one or the other.
Although anxiety disorder is highly treatable, findings from the Anxiety and Depression Association of America reveals that only 36.9% of those suffering receive treatment. You do not have to hide from anxiety. You can seek treatment to bring more peace into your life.
Most commonly referred to as psychological counseling, your doctor can recommend psychotherapy to reduce anxiety. It involves working with an experienced therapist whose aim is to reduce your anxiety symptoms.
Even during the pandemic, anxious people can receive therapy through telemedicine.
Telemedicine refers to remote diagnosis and treatment of patients through telecommunication platforms (instead of in-person doctor-patient meetings).
The remote psychologist will likely use cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) to instill anxiety-controlling skills into the patient. CBT practices will help the patient manage their emotions and worries, and will hopefully help them feel a little more like themselves over time.
Telemedicine can be more manageable than in-person therapy for patients who are feeling anxious. Speaking over the phone or on video chat can help the patient feel a little safer through the treatment process.
Several medications have been used for decades to relieve the effects of anxiety disorder. However, you should discuss the benefits, risks, and side effects of any medicine with your doctor before using it.
A telemedicine expert can diagnose your anxiety, then prescribe a medication they think will be most helpful to you. They will caution you on side effects, and easily reach out to check on you with the click of a button. Some medications that your physician may prescribe to you include:
- Antidepressants: These medications are used to treat major depressive disorders including anxiety disorder, chronic pain conditions, and addiction. They work by balancing neurotransmitter chemicals in the brain that affect moods and emotions. They are vital in ensuring sufficient sleep, increasing your concentration and appetite, and improving your general mood. You might ask your doctor about common side effects like weight gain, dizziness, headache and declining libido.
- Benzodiazepines: These depressant drugs slow down the Central Nervous System’s activity to soothe anxiety. These drugs are commonly used to treat symptoms such as muscle tension, headache, panic attack, insomnia, and restlessness. They are only prescribed in limited circumstances to relieve anxiety symptoms. The sedatives are only administered on a short-term basis to reduce acute anxiety. The side effects of prolonged usage include drowsiness, confusion, dizziness, and muscle weakness.
Therapy and antidepressants are the first line of defense against anxiety, and your doctor will know the best way to get you the anxiety help you need. Don’t hesitate to find mental health help so you can start feeling better today.