What is Anxiety?

Anxiety is an emotion characterized mainly by feelings of tension, excessive worry and physical changes. People with anxiety typically avoid certain situations out of fear.

Different types of anxiety and symptoms?

  • Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)- an anxiety disorder characterized by excessive worry and tension for 6 months or more despite there being little or nothing to provoke it.
  • Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)- an anxiety disorder is characterized by reoccurring and unwanted thoughts and/or behaviors. This person may try to relieve their anxiety by carrying out certain behaviors.
    • Example: a person who constantly fears germs will clean more than often.
  • Panic Disorder- an anxiety disorder characterized by unexpected, repetitive, intense and uncontrollable feelings of fear accompanied by physical symptoms which may include dizziness, excessive sweating, shortness of breath, chest pains and/or abdominal distress.
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder- an anxiety disorder that develops after exposure to a terrifying event where physical harm occurred or was threatened.
    • Example: An individual with PTSD has the following symptoms for over one month: difficulty relaxing, flashbacks of the event and/or avoidance of anything related to the event.
  • Social Anxiety Disorder or Social Phobia- an anxiety disorder characterized by overwhelming, excessive self-consciousness in everyday social situations.
    • Example: A person with social phobia has an intense fear of being criticized or embarrassed in situation such as speaking or eating in public, being assertive, etc. As a result, the individual holds back their behavior in such a setting.