Managing Anxiety through Counseling and Therapy
Feeling anxious is a natural emotional response for all human beings. Anxiety is a psychological condition that is characterized by intense feelings of fear, apprehension and uneasiness.
Normal anxiety is triggered by environmental factors caused by the sympathetic nervous system. The sympathetic nervous system is activated when a person experiences an event that may be perceived as dangerous, stressful or a threat.
Although anxiety is a normal experience for any human being, it can be quite an obstacle when experienced too often. People who experience too much anxiety should be helped and guided accordingly. If the anxiety continues to build up, then the outcome can be quite devastating. In such a scenario, worry and fear will tend to run your life. You would rather avoid certain terrifying situations than confront them and experience the outcomes. For some people, this overwhelming feeling can cause them to become unproductive and unresponsive. For others, it may cause them to become overly productive and hypervigilant. The latter may seem adaptive, however, such over exertion may lead them to burnout. High levels of anxiety can start to feel like a burden and moving forward becomes a big challenge.
Symptoms of anxiety include panic attacks, dizziness, sudden waves of fear, tension, nausea, heart palpitations alongside with other physical symptoms. Counselling tends to be prescribed for several anxiety disorders. These include Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) and phobias such as fear of spiders and height.
As the most common form of emotional disorders, anxiety disorders affect millions of people around the world. While being anxious is normal, having anxiety disorder makes you feel anxious all the time. There are even times that you find yourself fully consumed by it that you can’t do anything else but worry.
People who have an anxiety disorder begin to withdraw themselves from the world for fear of the unknown.
They stop doing things they love and even distance themselves from family and friends just because the anxiety can be too extreme or debilitating.
The types of anxiety disorder
- Panic disorder. This is manifested by a sudden attack of intense worry, apprehension and terror, and it can last anywhere from 10 minutes to hours. Patients with panic disorder can suffer from dizziness, shaking, confusion and even breathing difficulty when having a panic attack.
- Generalized anxiety disorder. This is a long-term anxiety over things, situations and events that are otherwise normal for other people. Being te most common form of anxiety disorder, patients suffering from GAD may sometimes find it hard to pinpoint the exact cause of their anxiety.
- Social anxiety disorder. This is manifested through social withdrawal and extreme self-consciousness even in daily social interactions. Patients suffering from social anxiety disorder always fear the judgment of others, which causes them to distance themselves from social situations which could affect their relationships.
Seeking Therapy as a Solution?
Anxiety can have a paralyzing effect on your life and bring everything to a standstill. Counselling can be helpful to restore a sense of hope and regain a sense of control over your responses to the intense fear. There are several counselling approaches that can be used to support clients experiencing anxiety. These include Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Narrative Therapy, Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction, and Dialectic Behavioural Therapy (DBT). There are many myths and misinformation regarding anxiety and anxiety disorders. Find out how much you actually know about anxiety by taking this Anxiety Knowledge quiz.
Here are five reasons psychotherapy can help relieve your anxiety symptoms:
- It Can Help You Identify Anxiety Triggers
- It Can Help Correct or Change Behaviors
- It Can Help Improve Your Thought Patterns
- It Helps You Establish Some Coping Mechanisms
- It Can Give You the Support That You Need