Types of anxiety disorders

by cadabamshospital

19 December,2016 | 4 years read

Having occasional anxiety is a normal part of living. From exam anxiousness, to public speaking or even the time right before you say “I do!” you could feel the jitters and become anxious. Being anxious stems from our uncertainty of a given situation. But anxiety disorders are more than temporary worry or fear. People suffering from anxiety disorders are often compulsively worrying, having irrational fears and have issue with being social. Anxiety is physical as well as a mental issue that affects millions of people all around the world. It would be considered an anxiety disorder when it starts interfering with work, school and relationships.

According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders -5 (DSM- 5) there are different types of anxiety disorders:

  1. Generalized Anxiety Disorders (GAD)
    • GAD is the most common type of anxiety.
    • GAD is in a state of mental and/or physical tension and nervousness.
    • It could either have no specific cause or the inability to take a break from the anxiety.
    • The symptoms of GAD are:
      • Constant feelings of irritation, restlessness, edginess, or a feeling that one has no control.
      • Having low energy levels (feeling drained).
      • Tense muscles, in the back, neck, and shoulders.
      • Having issues concentrating on tasks or activities.
      • Obsessing over negative and anxiety causing thoughts.
  1. Separation Anxiety Disorder
    • It is an form of anxiety of separation, where feels threaten of being separated from its parents or carer.
    • It occurs before 18 years of age.
    • It is the most prevalent anxiety disorder.
    • Girls are more susceptible than boys.
    • It creates a disruption in one’s in school, work, or social life.
  1. Selective Mutism
    • Selective Mutism is one’s refusal to verbally communicate to people other than immediate family or caregivers.
    • Individuals here would often communicate with nonverbals like nodding or grunting.
    • Individuals here usually do not possess language deficits.
    • It usually occurs before 5 years of age and first being noticed in school settings.
  1. Specific Phobia
    • Phobias are intense feelings of fear caused by objects, animals, or situations, etc.
    • The symptoms of phobias are:
      • Excessive and constant fear of a specific object, animal or situation.
      • Instant feelings of terror once confronted with the subject of your phobia.
      • Inability to control your fears, even once you know they're irrational.
      • Going to great lengths to avoid the stimulus.
    • It usually develops post a traumatic event or from witnessing traumatic events.
    • Anxiety occurs every time one is exposed to the stimulus.
    • Following are types of phobia; animal, natural environment, blood-injection injury, fear of blood, fear of medical care, fear of injections and transfusions, fear of injury, situational (e.g. airplanes, elevators, enclosed spaces), in children, e.g., loud sounds or costumed characters.
  1. Social Anxiety Disorder (Social Phobia)
    • It is where one has an irrational fear of social situations.
    • The diagnosis would take place only when it disrupts your daily living.
    • It is where the idea of socializing or speaking with the public, strangers, authority figures, or even your friends can cause anxiety and fear.
    • The symptoms of social phobia are:
      • Feeling fearful with unfamiliar people or in unfamiliar situations.
      • Preoccupied with the notion of being observed or judged by strangers.
      • Having overwhelming anxiety in any social situation and not being able to cope.
      • Severe fear of public speaking.
    • Most diagnoses are made during childhood or early adolescence
  1. Panic Disorder
    • It is where one feels recurrent, unexpected panic attacks.
    • It is characterized by two things, panic attacks and the fear of getting panic attacks.
    • Panic attacks are intense mental and physical sensations that are triggered by stress, anxiety, or nothing at all.
    • They often include mental distress, but are also accompanied by physical symptoms:
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Excessive sweating.
  • Tingling sensations or numbness in the body.
  • Depersonalization (feeling like you're outside yourself).
  • Trouble breathing
  • Chest pain or stomach pain.
  • Digestive problems and/or discomfort.
  • Headaches and ear pressure.
    • They also accompany with mental symptoms where one peaks about 10 minutes into a panic attack. They are having feelings of doom or the feeling that you are about to die, feeling of helplessness.
  1. Agoraphobia
    • It is the fear of going out in public, open spaces or the fear of being in unfamiliar places.
    • Many with this diagnosis either never leave their home or do not engage in activities that involve travelling anywhere other than their home and office or familiar or known places.
    • They experience intense fear if asked to do otherwise.
    • It could even occur post a traumatic event.
    • Following are symptoms of Agoraphobia:
      • Fear of socializing with groups of people irrespective of knowing them or not.
      • Feelings of severe stress or anxiety when you're in an environment other than your home
      • Feelings of tension and stress while engaging in regular activities like going to the store, talking with strangers, or even stepping outdoors.
      • Preoccupation with how to protect yourself in the event that some type of trouble occurs.

Anxiety disorders can have a crippling effect on individuals. It is hence vital to seek professional help that will elevate you from your sufferings and help you live a more productive and peaceful life. For professional help, reach out now to Cadabams Hospitals on +919741476476.