Anxiety is a normal part of daily life. It’s perfectly reasonable to feel jittery or anxious if you have a high-pressure job, if you’re enduring family troubles, or if you have a heavy workload at school. Anxiety disorders, however, are altogether different.
Having an anxiety disorder is more than experiencing occasional fear – symptoms of an anxiety disorder are pervasive and can become crippling if left unaddressed. Moreover, anxiety disorders exacerbate substance misuse. When you feel anxious, you might start self-medicating with drugs or alcohol. When you’ve misused drugs or alcohol, your anxiety symptoms worsen.
Substance misuse and anxiety disorders frequently cooccur; they’re among the most commonly diagnosed mental health issues in the U.S. Current research suggests that anxiety disorders often precede substance use disorders in certain populations, though it is challenging to determine definitively if one condition is more likely to cause the other.
Anxiety disorders fall into the following categories:
General Anxiety Disorder Treatment
People who come to us for anxiety disorder treatment exhibit excessive anxiety or worries nearly every day for extended stretches, typically six months or longer. These worries and anxieties can be about various factors, such as fears about their health or the health of loved ones, job obligations, social situations, and even mundane daily events. This condition might lead to major issues that adversely affect job performance, relationships, finances, and personal responsibilities.
Symptoms of generalized anxiety disorder might include:
- Restless, tense, or agitated feelings
- Easily becoming overtired or fatigued
- Not being able to concentrate; having trouble focusing
- Nausea or digestive upset
- Tension in muscles
- Inability to control worries
- Poor sleep hygiene, trouble sleeping or achieving deep sleep
Anxiety disorder treatment is also available for people who suffer from panic disorders. Panic disorders cause frequent, unexpected panic attacks, which are sudden bursts of severe stress and fear that appear suddenly and accelerate quickly. Panic attacks can happen without warning or be prompted by a particular set of circumstances or events.
People suffering from panic attacks may have these symptoms:
- Accelerated heart rate or heavy, pounding heartbeat
- Excessive sweating
- Uncontrolled shaking
- Trouble breathing or shortness of breath
- Sense of dread or imminent disaster
- Feeling helpless
- Stomach pains
Individuals with panic disorder are likely to worry continually about future panic attacks and take measures to steer clear of situations that are likely to trigger them. This response might include avoiding conditions, people, places, and things that have led to attacks in the past. This excessive concern about potential attacks can cause the sufferer to develop habits that inhibit social interactions or cause considerable disruptions in normal life.
A phobia is an intense and irrational fear of certain circumstances or things. While some fears are perfectly reasonable — the fear of extreme heights, for example — even logical fears are experienced so intensely and so far out of proportion to the specific danger that it adversely affects other parts of the person’s life.
Phobias that might require anxiety disorder treatment can involve the following:
- Experiencing excessive fear about certain circumstances, sometimes to the point of experiencing physical symptoms.
- Taking proactive measures to avoid problematic circumstances.
- Having violent and abrupt emotional and physical reactions when the dreaded circumstances are encountered.
The current Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) categorizes phobias in the following ways:
- Animal-related fears (fears of snakes, dogs, spiders)
- Environmental fears (fears of thunder, lightning, the dark, or heights)
- Bodily fears (fears of blood, injections, or injuries)
- Situational fears (fears of flying, motorcycles, or driving)
The DSM-5 also recognizes more difficult-to-classify fears as “other” fears. These might include fears of choking or making decisions.
Social Anxiety Disorder
Social anxiety disorder is when the sufferer experiences extreme fear or dread surrounding interpersonal situations, public speaking, speaking to strangers, or performing for an audience. This fear is typically rooted in worries that they will be perceived negatively and potentially ridiculed or humiliated. This dread can cause the sufferer to go to tremendous lengths to avoid social encounters, work-related situations, or school activities.
Separation Anxiety Disorder
Separation anxiety disorder can be experienced at any age, though it is commonly associated with children and infants. A separation anxiety disorder involves experiencing acute fears of being separated from those the sufferer has formed an attachment to. They will exhibit heightened anxiety symptoms when they are parted from the object of their attachment and will actively avoid situations where they are separated from their loved one.
Alpine Recovery Lodge Anxiety Disorder Treatments
Anxiety disorder treatments are essential to addressing substance use disorders. At Alpine Recovery Lodge, we offer comprehensive treatment plans tailored to your specific needs. We address the core components of your addiction disorder and help you develop coping strategies that allow you to manage the impulse to misuse substances for the long term. Whether you need generalized anxiety disorder treatment, treatment for social anxiety disorder, or recovery strategies for any category of mental health issue, we offer the expertise, dedication, and resources to help you succeed.
We invite you to heal your mind, body, and soul. Call the team at Alpine Recovery Lodge at 801-901-8757 to start your journey to recovery.