Anxiety in Adults
Anxiety is a natural feeling that everyone experiences from time to time. Anxiety can be beneficial at times, warning of dangers and improving performance when at optimal levels. However, some people experience anxiety that becomes chronic or “out of control.” They feel worried much of the time about things that are unlikely to happen, or would be fairly manageable if they did happen. Sometimes people with excessive worry report that they become nervous when everything seems to be going well in their lives, as if it is “the calm before the storm.” They also feel physiologically tense or “keyed up” much of the time. Some people may experience discrete episodes of panic attacks, in a state of such intense physiological arousal they may feel like it is a medical crisis. Others have increased anxiety in response to specific triggers or social situations.
The following are some signs of excessive anxiety:
- Excessive worry occurring more days than not
- Difficulty controlling the worry
- Feeling restless or “on edge”
- Becoming easily fatigued
- Difficulty concentrating or mind going blank
- Muscle tension
- Sleep disturbance
When anxiety becomes pervasive in this way, it can interfere with enjoyment of everyday activities, functioning at work, and family well-being. Many parents with excessive worry notice that their children pick up on this tension and experience increased anxiety as well. The physiological stress of chronic anxiety also often contributes to health problems associated with chronic stress, such as headaches, back pain, high blood pressure, poor blood sugar control, gastrointestinal distress, and poor sleep to name a few.
The good news is that anxiety is highly responsive to treatment using evidence-based intervention strategies. Many times a combination of strategies provide the most effective results.
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT)
- Mindfulness meditation
- Relaxation training
- Medication management
If you are concerned that anxiety has become out of control and is negatively affecting your life, please contact the Linden BP team to schedule a consultation appointment.