Anxiety disorders

Excessive worry can be managed.

Many people worry, but anxiety disorders occur when the worry is excessive and causes difficulties with daily life. The individual usually experiences excessive fear or apprehension that can sometimes present as physical symptoms such as butterflies in stomach.

Causes

Anxiety can be caused by grief, stress, medication, excessive caffeine, or excessive alcohol. However sometimes there is no identifiable cause.

Symptoms

Anxiety is experienced as severe worry, rumination (constant worry about one topic that cannot be switched off), apprehension and fear. These psychological symptoms are often accompanied by physical symptoms that include shortness of breath, palpitations or chest pain, butterflies in the stomach, or nausea and diarrhoea. A panic attack can cause a patient to feel like they are going to lose their mind or die.

Treatment

Anxiety disorders are treated with talking therapies which include Cognitive Behaviour Therapy or Insight Orientated Therapy. In more serious cases, medication may be added.