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Anxiety disorders

Anxiety disorders are far more than just a case of “bad nerves.” They are psychological conditions characterized by excessive anxiety, fear, avoidance, and worrying often caused by a combination of:

  • Psychological factors such as certain patterns of thinking and behaving (i.e., negative beliefs about one’s ability to cope, assuming the worst, etc.)

  • Highly stressful experiences

  • Genetics may play a moderate role in the development of anxiety

It is important to remember what anxiety may feel like. Some of these symptoms (though not necessarily all) are likely to be present when someone feels anxious:

  • Cold hands

  • Tense muscles

  • Shortness of breath

  • Fast heart rate

  • Butterflies in your stomach

  • Lightheadedness and/or dizziness

  • Feeling unreal or disconnected

  • Tingling in your fingers or toes

  • Thoughts of impending doom

  • Sweating and/or hot flashes

  • Headaches and pains

  • Nausea

  • Having to go to the bathroom

  • Wobbly legs

However, not all anxiety is indicative of an anxiety disorder! In fact, most anxiety is a useful and natural response to stressful situations. Being anxious can help you to cope with everyday activities.

  • It makes you study harder for exams

  • It keeps you on your toes when giving a presentation

  • It helps you avoid taking unnecessary risks

If your anxiety has become debilitating and is disrupting the flow of your daily life, then you may want to learn more by consulting the following links and/or speaking with a health professional.

There are several types of anxiety disorders, each with their own distinct features. Some examples include:

For more information on anxiety and anxiety disorders please see the following links:

Anxiety Disorders: Causes and Symptoms

Anxiety Disorders: Treatments