Anxiety & Anxiety disorder: An overview
Fear is a very normal human feeling. However, if anxiety becomes a constant companion in everyday life and dominates the emotional world, this could indicate the presence of an anxiety disorder.
However, a possible anxiety disorder can be recognized and effectively treated with competent medical help, for example in the context of an anxiety therapy in Bonn.
Anxiety disorder – what lies behind it
The term anxiety disorder covers various forms of fears that exist even though there is no real danger.
If an anxiety occurs again and again without a recognizable reason for it, and the anxiety becomes a constant accompaniment in everyday life, we speak of pathological anxiety.
Affected persons are burdened by the constantly present feeling and are strongly limited in a multiplicity of life situations. The disorder can manifest itself in various forms, which require psychotherapeutic treatment.
A distinction is made between the following manifestations of anxiety disorders:
- Panic disorders,
- Post-traumatic stress disorder,
- Obsessive-compulsive disorder,
- Generalized anxiety disorder.
Anxiety disorders – the causes
There are many different causes that can trigger an anxiety disorder. Anxiety disorders often occur as a result of the interaction of various factors.
A role is played by family predispositions and early childhood experiences, but also by personality disorders, pronounced stress situations or traumatic experiences.
Anxiety disorders often develop as a consequence of serious organic diseases.
Patients suffering from anxiety disorders have excessive activity in the anxiety center of the brain. Among other things, there is an increased readiness to react in the limbic system – for example, to stress.
Important nerve messengers are involved in these processes, which can be specifically influenced by drug treatment.
In addition, there are also physical causes that can promote the development of an anxiety disorder, such as nervous disorders of the brain, thyroid disorders, respiratory diseases or heart disease.
This is how anxiety disorders can manifest themselves
Every person experiences anxiety individually. Thus, when anxiety occurs, some people show visible nervousness, others perceive only a queasy feeling.
If pathological fears are present, however, they usually manifest themselves very violently and occur frequently.
This is not only a great emotional burden, but also physical symptoms appear.
These include dizziness, breathing difficulties, an accelerated pulse, trembling, sweating and palpitations.
If the anxiety is very pronounced, it can also trigger diarrhea and vomiting. In addition, many sufferers experience anxiety, chest pain and a feeling of not being with themselves.
If an acute panic attack occurs, the physical symptoms are often so severe that those affected have the feeling that they are suffering from a life-threatening illness.
The typical symptoms are palpitations, dizziness, shortness of breath, pressure and pain in the chest, and violent trembling. In some cases, the panic attack also leads to hyperventilation.
The anxiety attacks often last only a few minutes. When the panic reaction reaches its peak, the symptoms subside.
However, the fear of a repetition after the anxiety attack is often so great that situations that could trigger panic are consistently avoided in the future. This is the time when the fear becomes overwhelming.
Generalized anxiety, on the other hand, does not usually occur quickly and in attacks, but slowly and insidiously.
Inner tension, restlessness and nervousness grow and can be felt especially in the stomach area. Rational thinking is then hardly possible.