May 17, 2022


Anxiety is a strong desire sometimes mixed with doubt, fear, or uneasiness.

In medical terms, Anxiety is a multisystem response to a perceived threat or danger. It reflects a combination of biochemical changes in the body, the patient's personal history and memory, and the social situation 

 Many people experiencing the symptoms of anxiety can begin to wonder if there is something really wrong with them. One typical fear is that they might be going crazy. Unfortunately, the reactions and comments from other people such as, ‘just get yourself together’ are not very helpful. 

Although you might feel alone in your struggle against anxious moods, the reality is that many people experience these moods either from time to time, or on a more regular basis. In fact, it is estimated that 1 in every 5 experiences a significantly anxious mood at some time in their life. 

Understanding Anxiety: 

Feeling afraid is very much a part of the experience of being human. It occurs in response to realistically anticipated danger and therefore is a survival instinct. For example, if a ferocious animal confronted us it is likely that we would respond with fear. This response is important because it initiates a whole series of physical and behavioral changes that ultimately serve to protect us. In this example, when confronted by an animal, the feeling of fear would probably lead us to either run for our lives or become sufficiently ‘pumped up’ to physically defend ourselves. As you can see from this example, the experience of fear is part of a process of survival. 

 What Causes Anxiety? 

Biological Factors: A genetic factor has been linked to the development of anxiety disorders. For example, in obsessive-compulsive disorder, about 20% of first-degree relatives have also suffered from the condition. Overall, based on family studies, it has been suggested that individuals may inherit a vulnerability to developing an anxiety disorder. 

 Psychological Factors: Having this genetic vulnerability does not imply that those individuals will develop an anxiety disorder. A great deal depends on the lifestyle of that person, the types of life stressors they have encountered and their early learning. For example, if we were taught to fear certain neutral situations as a child it can become difficult to extinguish these learned patterns of behavior. Therefore, we may have developed certain patterns of thinking and behaving which contribute to the development of an anxiety disorder. 

How to Recognize the Signs of Anxiety 

Anxiety declares itself not just with endless loops of worry in the mind but with heart-pounding discomfort in the body, from general jumpiness and trembling to ringing in the ears and shortness of breath. 

The symptoms of anxiety can be highly misleading. Not only are they often misinterpreted as signs of a heart attack and impending doom—a cardinal feature of panic attacks—but they often lead to odysseys of medical misdiagnosis. Physical symptoms may be assumed to be the result of physical causes, and in a misdirected search for them, the true source of the problem can continue undiscovered and unaddressed. 

How to Treat Anxiety: 

Anxiety disorders can often be addressed successfully with psychotherapy, alone or in combination with medication, and with lifestyle shifts. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), tailored to an individual’s specific anxieties, is one of the most effective options. Patients learn to challenge distorted thought patterns that create so much distress. 

Exposure therapy, in which patients are safely and gradually exposed to their fears so they no longer avoid them, is an essential part of most behavioral treatments for anxiety. Medication is often used to help patients control symptoms enough to focus on talk therapy. 

Lifestyle changes play an important role in the long-term management of anxiety. Exercising, deep-breathing, and programs of meditation all target very specific facets of the disorder. 

As said by Paulo Coelho “Stress, anxiety and depression are caused when we are living to please others”.