Anxiety disorder is among the most common mental illnesses in the United States. Currently, it affects over 40 million Americans, yet only 36.9% of them seek treatment. If you have this condition, you experience persistent fear and worry about everyday situations. The feelings of panic and anxiety are so intense that they are difficult to control, significantly interfering with your everyday activities. However, timely anxiety treatment reduces symptoms, enabling you to continue living your life normally.
Do You Have Anxiety?
Sometimes, it's hard to differentiate anxiety and other health conditions that cause similar symptoms. Since there are no medical tests for anxiety, the doctor or psychiatrist may use existing screening tools to determine if your symptoms are linked to anxiety.
First, the doctor has to determine if your symptoms have a medical cause. They may, thus, ask you to describe your symptoms in detail. The information collected helps to get an accurate diagnosis and treatment.
The common symptoms of anxiety to watch include:
- Frequently feeling restless or nervous
- Having trouble sleeping
- Inability to control worry
- Occasional panic attacks
- Breathing rapidly, trembling, and sweating
When to See a Doctor
Sometimes, the symptoms of anxiety are mild and usually disappear after a short time. In such a case, you don't need any medical help. Any time you feel increasingly anxious, you can do any of the following activities:
- Engage in some physical exercises
- Take deep breaths
- Take some time out
- Engage in your favorite hobbies
- Talk to someone
However, there are times when symptoms won't improve even with the above activities. In such a case, you should seek immediate anxiety treatment. Anxiety needs treatment if:
- It interferes with your relationships, work, and other parts of life
- It is intense and difficult to control
- It leads to unhealthy habits, such as substance abuse
- It causes suicidal ideation
Why Is Early Anxiety Treatment Vital?
Anxiety can be hard to treat if you wait. If the condition is mild, it can be easily managed by your primary care provider. However, in some extreme cases, you need to see a psychiatrist.
Anxiety treatment takes two forms:
- Psychotherapy: You work with a therapist to manage the anxiety symptoms.
- Medication: The doctor may prescribe anti-anxiety medication or antidepressants to relieve the symptoms.
If anxiety is not treated, it may worsen, leading to other physical and mental conditions, including:
- Substance abuse
- Severe insomnia
- Social isolation
- Poor quality of life
The Bottom Line
Anxiety, like other mental conditions, is treatable if you get help early. However, you should always try to lessen worries by staying active and participating in activities you enjoy.
Contact a company like BrainCore Therapy of Louisville to learn more.