What it’s like to suffer from an anxiety disorder?

General anxiety disorder, social anxiety disorder, specific phobias such as agoraphobia, separation anxiety disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder are some of the most commonly recognised anxiety disorders. And no tests can conclusively diagnose them, neither the brain scan nor blood test. However, some signs may lead to identifying them.

High level of distress

Having the sensitivity particularly in dentists, working in a crowded room, or flying and that as they approach, people become tensed? Sleep-deprived finding themselves crying over their anxiety? Vomit for days leading up to a test? Most probably they are suffering from anxiety disorder.

There are some cases that emotions become so serious that they lead to panic attacks that can be determined by signs and symptoms of anxiety such as rapid heart rate, fear of losing control, dizziness, depersonalisation, or fear of dying. People with an anxiety disorder may also exhibit these symptoms the moment they walk into a party or an office.

Persistent panicking

A brain, anxious or non-anxious, is always learning. The only difference is that sometimes, the anxious brain learns things that are wrong and are difficult to unlearn. Such is when people have decided that attendees at parties are probably judging them, their brains register this lesson and generalise it to future social encounters. Or experience an embarrassing social moment and the brain establishes it as an event that scares them. When left untreated, these mentioned anxieties may continue for months and years.

Avoid things

People do avoid things they dislike or fear. While avoiding watching horror movies or riding roller coasters can’t really affect their lives, however, anxieties can also strip away those that do. Some people dread taking a medical test because of the results and what they can learn from it. This then becomes the problem. For those with an aeroplane phobia, their travels will be limited to places where they can drive. And many other similar scenarios.

Living is compromised

Due to the severity of the anxiety disorder, day-to-day life may be compromised. For people who are suffering from OCD, they may be in need of spending hours out of the house just because their pillows on the bed are disorganised. Also, performances in doing school work or a job may also suffer because of perfectionism that makes the project impossible to complete, or because of social anxiety that makes talking to classmates or colleagues. The worse is that the emotional signs and symptoms of anxiety may lead to headaches, sleeplessness, and loss of appetite.

Just learn that anxiety responds well to treatments. And if found that you are suffering from an anxiety disorder, reach out to a professional as soon as possible.