Anxiety, is it controlling your life or impacting your marriage?
What Is Anxiety?
Anxiety is a normal reaction to stressful situations. In some cases, it becomes excessive and can cause sufferers to dread everyday situations.
This type of steady, all-over anxiety is called Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD).
Other related disorders include panic attacks—severe episodes of anxiety which happen in response to specific triggers; obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) as defined by the Mayo Clinic.
People with OCD are driven by unreasonable thoughts and unwarranted fears, referred to as “obsessions.This leads the sufferers to perform repetitive behaviours, referred to as “compulsions.”
The condition strikes twice as many females as males.
Anxiety frequently co-occurs with depression that the two are thought to be twin faces of one disorder. Like depression, it strikes twice as many females as males. Conversations around mental health are fortunately, becoming more common.
I regularly speak in the workplace or at events about how to recognise the onset of a mental health condition and how best to manage it.
Generally, anxiety arises during childhood. Evidence suggests both biology and environment contribute to the disorder. Some people may have a genetic predisposition to anxiety, however, this does not make the development of the condition inevitable. Early traumatic experiences can also reset the body’s normal fear-processing system so that it is hyper-reactive to stress.
Fear of the unknown
The exaggerated worries and expectations of negative outcomes in unknown situations are often accompanied by physical symptoms with this condition.
These include: muscle tension, headaches, stomach cramps, and frequent urination. Behavioural therapies with or without medication to control symptoms, have proved highly effective against the condition, especially in children.
Anxiety is more than feeling stressed or worried. Anxious feelings are normal and can happen to everyone when under pressure for whatever reason.
The problem arises when these feelings happen for no apparent reason or when the stress related situation has passed and the stress and anxious thoughts still remain.
Below are common signs and symptoms
- Feeling very worried or anxious most of the time
- Finding it difficult to calm down
- Feeling overwhelmed or frightened by intense feelings of panic
- Experiencing recurring thoughts that cause anxiety and may seem insignificant to others
- Avoiding certain places, people or social situations.
- Experiencing recurring nightmares, flashbacks after a traumatic event.
- Family history of mental health problems
- Stressful life events – job stress or change, pregnancy, relationship issues, experiencing verbal, sexual or emotional abuse or trauma, the death of a loved one.
- Physical health problems – hormones, diabetes, heart disease.
- Substance abuse
- Personality factors – children who are perfectionists, who are easily flustered, lack self-esteem or want control of everything sometimes develop the condition as children or go on to develop it as adults.
- Social phobia
- Generalised anxiety disorder
- Specific phobias
- Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
- Post -traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Panic disorder
Ways to manage mild Anxiety
- Diet – Avoid eating late at night. Avoid heavy carb-loaded foods near bedtime.
- Adequate exercise – walking for 30 minutes per day.
- Meditation, Yoga, focusing on breathing.
- Reduce alcohol consumption and avoid illicit drugs. Avoid excessive caffeine intake.
- Seek professional advice from a medical practitioner, avoid self-diagnosing.
- Address the issue which is causing the problem with (CBT) Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
Anxiety, a common occurrence when the relationship faces uncertainty. Either one or both partners experience many a sleepless night which can compound the situation.
We work on exploring the fear, how that fear feeds the uncertainty. Let us work towards finding clarity and design a process to see you through. Anxiety can be debilitating, I know, I have been there. Contact me to find out how I can help.