“Like an overflowing cup, you cannot put new ideas in until you let go of the old ones.“
Anxiety disorders are a globally widespread phenomenon in today’s stressful world characterized by a hectic lifestyle. The most common kinds include agoraphobia, general anxiety disorder, PTSD/post-traumatic stress disorder, social anxiety disorder, OCD/obsessive compulsive disorder, certain phobias, and separation anxiety disorder.
Presented below are 3 signs which may indicate that you might have an anxiety disorder.
1. Increased levels of distress
When we talk about anxiety, we usually refer to the degree of discomfort. We all tend to worry and become tense just before an important presentation or a test. We even worry about our own safety and health after hearing about an epidemic on the telly.
Also, people who have specific kinds of sensitivities or fears, such as of flying, dental checkups, etc., are more likely to get more tense and anxious as the day of the flight or visit to the dentist nears. However, when such tension and worry about an impending event becomes all consuming and prevents you from carrying out routine work, then it can be debilitating and termed as a sign of an anxiety disorder.
People with anxiety may not be able to sleep and will often end up crying at their distressed state and excess anxiety. Some college going anxiety sufferers may vomit for a few days before an important test.
Sometimes the anxiety can become so intense that it will result in a panic attack, which is an episode of severe anxiety that hits hard and fast and is accompanied by a variety of symptoms like increased heart beat, dizziness, fear of dying or losing control, and an out-of-body depersonalization effect, etc.
The feeling of rapid respiration and pounding heartbeats that one experiences just after nearly avoiding an auto accident can be compared to a panic attack. However, in people with anxiety disorders, such panic attacks may occur as part of everyday life and for the oddest of things, like preparing for a party!
2. Avoidance of situations due to fears
All of us avoid situations that we dislike or fear. We may avoid horror movies or roller coaster rides; this however does not make a big difference to our lives. Anxiety disorders tend to affect things that matter. For example, anxiety sufferers may fear needles/medical tests and hence may not visit a doctor, which is a big problem.
People with a fear of flying may restrict their travelling to only those places that can be reached by road.
People with stage fright may not pursue their love of acting/theater and may instead settle for a dreary job. Avoidance of important things due to anxiety-based fears can adversely affect the overall quality of life.
3. The tension hampers daily life
Severe forms of anxiety disorders can interfere with the routine activities of everyday life. OCD sufferers may take an inordinate amount of time to leave their house and go to work if they feel that the bed is not made properly or pillows are not set correctly. Social anxiety can pose problems in talking to colleagues or classmates and perfectionism may cause significant delays in completion of a project; all these can adversely affect work and school performance.
Deterioration of the emotional symptoms can eventually trigger the development of physical symptoms like appetite loss, headaches, and insomnia, etc. The combination of mental and physical issues can then increasingly hamper daily life. So use this post as a warning and have your local psychologist or doctor diagnosis what may truly be going on.