The symptoms of anxiety disorders are more severe than the normal anxiety that you may feel from time to time. Anxiety disorders can affect your ability to do certain things (such as getting on a plane) or to handle specific situations (such as public speaking). Anxiety can cause you to act irrationally, even when you know that your behavior is not normal. For some, anxiety can make it almost impossible to have a normal life.
Treatment begins with a complete evaluation.
We will assess the nature and severity of your anxiety and attempt to determine its cause. Physical, emotional, or environmental stressors can contribute to the development and maintenance of the disorder. Then your doctor will develop a treatment plan. The plan is personalized so that your treatment addresses the most important problems early on. Anxiety disorders can be treated with therapy, medication, or a combination of both.
Symptoms of Panic Disorder
Symptoms of panic disorder include:
Feeling that something terrible (such as loss of control or death) is about to happen
Fast heart rate
If you have recurring attacks or are distressed by these attacks, you may be having a panic attack. Fear of these attacks may cause you to avoid any situation that could cause an attack, such as driving, crowds, or being alone.
Symptoms of Social Phobia
Fear of being ridiculed may cause you to avoid social or performance situations, such as public speaking, going to parties, eating at restaurants, writing in front of others, or using public restrooms. If you suffer from social phobia, you may feel threatened by certain situations, so you could avoid them completely or suffer terribly when these situations cannot be avoided.
Symptoms of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) is an anxiety disorder characterized by repeatedly doing something to calm your fears. For example, if you have an obsessive concern about contamination, you may wash your hands repeatedly. If you are afraid of being hurt, you may repeatedly check your door to make sure it is locked or check the stove to make sure it is off.
You may have a phobia or something specific. Examples include fear of flying, heights, small spaces, illness, or certain animals. Specific phobias are common and do not always require treatment.
When a phobia interferes with normal life, treatment can help. For example, if the fear of flying makes it impossible to conduct business or visit relatives, it is important to overcome the phobia.
Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) is characterized by excessive worrying. Symptoms include fatigue, restlessness, irritability, and muscle tension. GAD can interfere with your ability to work and function at home.