Anxiety Disorder - Causes, Symptoms and Treatment .MF .

August 12, 2017 17:52 | Mental Disorders

Fear and anxiety are not only sources of human suffering, but also bear great adaptive significance.The role of the fear is that it saves us from the emergency while the alarm keeps us ready for operation in the event of potential threats.Anxiety is a normal human emotion, each of us experience this feeling from time to time.But if this emotion is reborn in a constant and severe stress affects a person's ability to lead a normal life, talking about mental illness.

Anxiety disorder - a constant causeless anxiety and worry is not related to an event caused by psycho-emotional overstrain.

cause of anxiety disorders.

exact cause of anxiety disorder is not known, but, like other mental illnesses, it is not the result of poor education, weak willpower or character defect.Scientists continue their studies and to date has already been established that the development of the disease is influenced by a number of factors:
- changes in the brain,
- the impact of environmental stress on the body,
- malfunction interneuron connections that are involved in the formation of emotions,
-prolonged stress violates the transfer of information from one brain region to another,
- pathology (abnormal development of the disease), brain structures that are responsible for memory and the formation of emotions,
- susceptibility to the disorder may be inherited genetically from one of the parents (as cancer or bronchialasthma).
- traumatic (psychological trauma, stress) event in the past.

There are several diseases that can affect the appearance of an anxiety disorder.
- Mitral valve prolapse (a problem that occurs when one of the heart valves do not close properly).
- Hyperthyroidism (overactive gland).
- Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar).
- Frequent use of or dependence on psychoactive stimulants (amphetamines, cocaine, caffeine).

Panic attacks, as a manifestation of anxiety disorder can also be caused by diseases and other physical causes.

Under what symptoms need to see a doctor?

If you find yourself in one of these signs of an anxiety disorder should seek immediate medical attention.Symptoms may vary depending on the type of anxiety disorder, but common include:
- often arises a sense of panic, fear, anxiety,
- sleep disorders,
- cold or sweaty hands and / or feet,
- shortness of breath or difficulty breathing,
- dry mouth,
- numbness or tingling in the hands or feet,
- nausea,
- muscle tension,
- dizziness,
- pressure in the chest, heart palpitations,
- hyperventilation (rapid breathing), lung,
- violationview,
- sided headache,
- difficulty swallowing,
- bloating, diarrhea.

All manifestations of the disease are accompanied by a sense of anxiety and repetitive negative thoughts, distorted perception of reality.

The structure, an anxiety disorder is not homogeneous, it is formed by a plurality of components: behavior, physiology and consciousness.The disease directly affects the behavior, reduces efficiency, can cause stuttering, insomnia, hyperactivity (increased activity), stereotypic (repetitive) behavior.

physiological (bodily) symptoms of anxiety disorder are often mistakenly interpreted as a threat to life, because patients tend to only see the reality as "black" or "white".For example, a chest pain is perceived as a heart attack, headache - a brain tumor, rapid breathing - a sign of impending death.

diagnosis of anxiety disorder

How to assess at risk of developing an anxiety disorder?
What would find at a predisposition to develop the disease must be three or more positive answers to the questions below.

1. You experience episodes of intense fear or panic?
2. Have you ever felt in my head the permanent presence of bad thoughts?
you thought you "gone mad"?
3. You notice at anxiety and fear is stronger than usual?
4. You avoid certain situations or communication, because you are afraid that you will overcome a panic attack?
5. You have a panic attack while standing in line when stuck in traffic, you are in a crowd or a place from which you can not escape or get out?
6. When you are in the room unknown to you, you know, just in case, where the emergency exits?
7. Do you think you have obsessive thoughts?
8. Do you get one or more symptoms of anxiety on a regular basis (daily or weekly)?
9. You are a lot more nervous than before?
10. You fanatical care about your health?
11. You are impatient, but quickly around frustrated?
12. sometimes feel that you are living in a dream or that your life is not real?
13. How would you rate your self-esteem (how you feel about yourself)?
14. Often people say "yes" when they wanted to say "no"?
15. Do you often feel the "weakness"?
16. Nervousness or anxiety prevents you from working?
17. Do you like to keep everything under control?

What would be determined with the final diagnosis and appropriate treatment, the physician should determine the type of anxiety disorder.There are several types of anxiety disorders.

Phobias - this constant fear, disproportionate real threat, panic when in contact with certain situations.Phobias difficult controlled, despite the desire of the patient to get rid of fear.The most common specific phobias and social phobias.

* Specific phobia when a person feels intense fear of a specific object or situation.There are five common types of specific phobias: fear of animals (cats, dogs, rats, snakes, etc.), natural phenomena (darkness, rain, water, etc.), situations (elevators, bridges, tunnels, etc.)..Less common fear the sight of blood, injections, injuries or other unusual phobia (vomiting, choking).

* A person suffering from social phobia, fear of negative evaluations of others.Constantly he feels that he looks stupid, and it is not says so, does not behave correctly.He believes that other people treat him badly, embarrassed.The disease leads to the destruction of social ties.

PTSD (PTSD) - a reaction to the events of the past, which was very hard to resist (death or serious injury (own or a loved one and others experienced the tragic events)).

patient usually pursue recurring intrusive memories.These can be nightmares, feeling that an event happened again (delusions, hallucinations, memories), and other non-relevant physiological responses to imaginary events.Such a person is too excitable, with difficulty falling asleep, has difficulty concentrating, sensitive, prone to outbursts of anger.

Acute Stress Disorder - a prerequisite for its occurrence is psychotraumatic situation.Nevertheless, there are several significant differences from PTSD.The patient is deprived of emotional reactions (emotional flattening), it feels that the environment is unreal, like a dream, perceives his own body as something alien or seeing a different person.In consequence may develop a disease as dissociative amnesia.

main feature panic disorder is the occurrence of panic attacks.Panic attack happens suddenly, quickly bring the patient to a state of terror.It lasts from a few minutes to an hour, accompanied by shortness of breath, dizziness or fainting, palpitations, tremor (trembling), stomach upset or nausea, numbness of extremities, hot flushes or chills, pain or tightness in the chest, the fear of death or loss of control over what's happening.

Generalized anxiety disorder - in contrast to the panic attacks, characterized by the fact that the disease is chronic and can last for several months.Patients are not able to relax, get tired easily, have difficulty concentrating, irritability, and live in constant fear of having difficulty in making decisions, very afraid of making a mistake, always tense and irritated.The disorder lowers confidence and lowers the self-esteem of the patient.Many of these patients are dependent on the opinions of others, often feel inferior, have a deep conviction that they are not able to change things for the better.

obsessive compulsive disorder - an important feature of this disease are repetitive, not sequential, not desirable and not controlled (compulsive) intrusive thoughts or ideas that enter the mind of the patient and difficult to get rid of them.The most common of them - concern about dirt and germs, fear of ill or pick up an infection.The life of a man full of specific rituals, such as frequent hand washing, cleaning, prayer.These actions are a kind of response to the intrusive thoughts and their purpose is that to protect themselves from anxiety.Most of those who suffer from obsessive-compulsive disorder and depression are at even.

treatment of anxiety disorders

One of the greatest achievements of modern psychology is to develop new efficient methods for the treatment of anxiety disorders.Many people are discovering their own effective ways to cope with anxiety, for example, even breathing, relaxation, yoga.


Patients suffering from anxiety disorders, first of all, we must learn to control physiological symptoms of anxiety.There are two methods: relaxing muscles and breath control (relaxation techniques in the article Phobias & gt; & gt;).This facilitates anxiety, helps sleep, reduces pain from muscle tension.Training muscle relaxation is a gradual process that requires daily exercise.Such a method has long been successfully used in the treatment of anxiety disorders and is an effective method in the management of anxiety.

next step in dealing with anxiety is deep, even breathing (but not hyperventilation).Breathing exercises are an effective way to control the physical symptoms of a panic attack.

Psychotherapy Cognitive therapy has been extremely effective in the treatment of anxiety disorders.The alarm can take the form of pessimistic thoughts, images and fantasies, from which it is difficult to get rid of.Together with the therapist and patient analyzes reformulates these thoughts, and then gives them a sense of optimism.Therapy is aimed at something that would teach anxiety disorder patients to think positively, to perceive events more realistically, to prove incompatible with the facts of negative thoughts.

addiction therapy - a technique in which patients repeatedly exposed to what causes them fear.Treatment begins with simple tasks, gradually become more complex exercises.This is repeated until the patient does not lose the feeling of anxiety in a certain situation.Using this method, 80-90% cured specific phobias.


Pharmacotherapy is only needed in severe cases of anxiety disorders and should not be the only method of treatment.Drugs can not be used as a permanent treatment, and only when necessary to relieve some of the symptoms of panic disorder.

Drugs used to treat panic disorder include:

Antidepressant - maprotiline (Maprotilinum), mianserin (Mianserinum), Milnacipran (Milnacipranum), mirtazapine (Mirtazapinum), moclobemide (Moclobemidum), paroxetine (Paroxetinum), pipofezine (Pipofezinum) Pirlindol (Pirlindolum), sertraline (Sertralinum), Tianeptine (Tianeptinum), trazodone (Trazodonum), fluvoxamine (Fluvoxaminum), fluoxetine (Fluoxetinum).They take effect only after a few weeks, so they need to be taken continuously, not only during the acute need.

Benzodiazepines - Diazepam (Diazepam), Clonazepam (Clonazepam) Noozepam (Noozepam) Frizium (Frizium), Lorazepam (Lorazepam).This, for the most part, anti-anxiety drugs that act very quickly (usually within 15 - 30 minutes).Taking these drugs during a panic attack provides rapid relief of symptoms.However, the benzodiazepines are very dangerous.They are addictive and have serious symptoms of withdrawal (cancellation, drug withdrawal), so drugs should be used with great caution and only on prescription.


Peppermint - is especially useful when panic conditions, there are problems with the stomach.
oat straw - have antidepressant properties, soft tones and protects against overloads the nervous system.
Chamomile flowers - are good not only for the digestive system, also relaxes and soothes.
lavender flowers - extract is ideal for aromatherapy, it relieves headaches, eases depression and tension.
Flowers of lime - broth has antispasmodic and sedative effects;stabilizes the pressure which may be increased due to the trouble.
Passion - is one of the best natural sedatives.It is especially recommended when there is insomnia.
Melissa - calms nerves, relieves headaches, uplifting and energizing.
Valerian - helps to fight panic attacks, eases breathing and sleep, relieves muscle spasms and headaches caused by anxiety.
Hop cones - from fatigue and nervousness, irritability and excessive excitability, mood disorders and difficulty falling asleep.

prevention of anxiety disorders

When it comes to anxiety, professional treatment and therapy are of great importance.But there are preventive measures that you can implement to help yourself and prevent the development of disease:

Learn more about anxiety disorders, if it happens you will know the symptoms, take control of the situation, avoid unexpected sensations quickly recover from stress.

Avoid frequent use of coffee, smoking cigarettes.Nicotine and caffeine can trigger an anxiety disorder in susceptible individuals.Just be careful with medications that contain stimulants (diet pills, cold).

Learn how to control your breathing.Deep breathing can relieve symptoms of panic attacks.Learning to control your breathing, you will develop a skill that you can use to calm themselves.

Use relaxation techniques.When used regularly, exercises such as yoga, meditation, and relaxation of the muscles will help to strengthen the body.

Psychiatrist Kondratenko NA