- Anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the U.S., affecting 40 million adults in the United States age 18 and older, or 18.1% of the population every year.
- Anxiety disorders are highly treatable, yet only 36.9% of those suffering receive treatment.
- People with an anxiety disorder are three to five times more likely to go to the doctor and six times more likely to be hospitalized for psychiatric disorders than those who do not suffer from anxiety disorders.
- Anxiety disorders develop from a complex set of risk factors, including genetics, brain chemistry, personality, and life events.
There is some level of anxiety that is normal to have. So many of us are dealing with increased anxiety through this pandemic. The question becomes… at what point should I seek treatment for this issue? First, it is never too soon! As stated above, people with anxiety disorders are more likely to go to the doctor. Many go for physical symptoms before seeking help for their mental health. The issue is that many people who have chronically suffered with anxiety have no idea that their thought patterns are different from others! There is also a natural amount of anxiety that we should definitely feel. Imagine crossing a street with no concern for being hit by oncoming traffic- you could easily put yourself in a dangerous situation! There is a reasonable and natural level of anxiety to have; however, there is a point where it becomes too much. I have heard some people say that some anxiety can be a good motivator, but when it becomes debilitating, that’s when it becomes a concern. Those symptoms can present either physically or emotionally.
In the DSM used for diagnosing mental health disorders, there is a recurring theme. That theme surrounds the concepts of “level of distress and impairment in functioning”. If you are feeling your distress increasing and you are having difficulty in areas of life like relationships, school, work, etc., you may want to look into finding someone to talk to. You can go to psychologytoday.com to look for counselors in your area and narrow those results by type of insurance accepted. If your anxiety is so high that reaching out is too overwhelming or if you aren’t ready to commit to therapy, we at AHC have a 5 part anxiety training you can check out by clicking HERE! The training can be purchased as 1 package for all 5 videos (you receive 1 video for free this way) or you can purchase each video separately. The topics include an introduction to anxiety disorders, amygdala-based anxiety (my favorite), cortex-based anxiety, anxiety & depression, and anxiety medications. Also, if you are in the state of Virginia, don’t hesitate to reach out to us as we can provide teletherapy to anyone in Virginia! Although, the anxiety training can be accessed from anywhere in the world!
Please be aware that trauma can impact the severity of anxiety disorders and alternative treatment strategies may be utilized in those cases. We hope you have no fears in reaching out- please know that speaking up is the absolute best and bravest thing you can do. Shame grows in silence. New life is spoken!