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Friday, October 20, 2017

What You Need To Know About Anxiety Disorders

Do you know anyone who suffers from an anxiety disorder? It is a type of mood disorder that also includes other disorders like bipolar disorder and depression. It’s important to note that anxiety disorder is a very complicated disorder and requires specifically designed treatment.

It’s important to note that anxiety is a common emotion in humans. In fact, it’s part of human evolution and is important for functions like keeping ourselves and family members safe. However, a common problem today is that the bombardment of news and info can cause people to worry about things and situations that aren’t dangerous. When anxiety reaches that level, it becomes a problem for people.

Worrying can result in a positive result when we decide to make plans to deal with certain situations. It can help to turn a possible negative result into a positive one. Experts say it’s good to “worry well” and we’re able to pick what we do and don’t worry.

The problem is when anxiety causes people to worry unreasonably about the future. It might involve assuming the worst possible outcome will happen. The belief is that if people believe the worst situation will happen, they’ll be ready for it.

There are a few problems with this approach. Anxiety can only help to a certain extent when dealing with a problem. Worrying also doesn’t help to prevent a bad event from happening or guarantee that it will be a good one. Another problem with worrying is that it can cause negative physical and mental side-effects. If an anxiety disorder is becoming a major problem for someone, then they should probably consider getting professional help and treatments.

History

Worry and anxiety are a normal human emotion. So it might be surprising that the American Psychiatric Association recognized it less than four decades ago in 1980. Before that year patients with these mood disorders usually received the diagnosis of either “stress” or nerves.” Before the APA’s 1980 classification it was quite tough for people to get treatment for the disorder since there was no recognition as such.

However, since then international research has shown the major effects of these disorders. The good news is diagnosis and treatment of mood disorders like anxiety disorder can help to prevent people from experiencing them. Some of the side-effects of the disorder include alcohol/drug abuse, agoraphobia, and major depression. Today there’s also more public interest in anxiety disorder and panic attacks. It’s become less stigmatized since people throughout science suffer from the condition.

  1. Symptoms/Treatment (specific drugs)

Symptoms

There are several symptoms of anxiety disorder. It’s important to recognize them so early to detect the disorder and the sufferer treated as quickly as possible. Here are some of the primary symptoms to watch out for:

  • Continuous feelings of worry/anxiety
  • Stomach cramps/nausea
  • Shaking/trembling
  • Always expecting danger
  • Feeling unreal/detached
  • Feelings of inadequacy/failure
  • Low appetite/binge eating
  • Chest pain/heart palpitations
  • Problems sleeping
  • Breathing problems/hyperventilation
  • Believing bad results will result in wrong actions

Treatment

Several effective treatments for anxiety disorder may include the following:

  1. Psychotherapy

It is also known as “talk therapy.” In this situation, patients work with a therapist to reduce their lower their anxiety symptoms. It’s important to note that there are various types of psychotherapy. One of the most effective treatments for anxiety is cognitive behavioral therapy.

It is usually a short-term treatment. The goal is to teach the sufferer certain skills that allow the person to return to the activities they avoided due to the anxiety. As the patient achieves success, in the beginning, the symptoms start to get better.

  1. Antidepressants

There are various types of prescribed medications for people with anxiety disorder. They include serotonin norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor (SNRI) and selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) drugs.  Here are some of the specific anti-depressants that are prescribed by physicians to treat anxiety disorder:

duloxetine (Cymbalta)

escitalopram (Lexapro)

paroxetine (Paxil, Pexeva)

venlafaxine (Effexor XR)

  1. Benzodiazepines

It is a type of sedative that can relieve the symptoms of anxiety. Here are some common types:

alprazolam (Xanax, Niravam)

chlordiazepoxide (Librium)

diazepam (Valium)

lorazepam (Ativan)

These drugs are usually only used as short-term treatments of acute anxiety. If the patient has had problems with alcohol/drug abuse, it’s highly advisable not to use these medications since they can become addictive.

  1. Buspirone

It is a type of anti-anxiety med used as an ongoing treatment for anxiety disorder. It’s important to note that this drug can take many weeks to be effective. It is the same situation as the majority of anti-depressants.

  1. Lifetime/Home Remedies

These options are less common than psychotherapy and medications. However, they can also have a positive effect for people who are experiencing an anxiety disorder. Here are some of the best options:

  1. Sleep

How much sleep are you getting? Experts recommend that adults get 7-8 hours of sleep each night. It’s especially important for people who are suffering from anxiety disorder. The reason is that sleep deprivation can have many negative effects on a person’s physical and mental well-being.

There are emergency situations when you have to get less sleep. However, this should be the exception rather than the rule. It’s important to make sure you’re relaxing enough at night time before sleep then getting a full night’s sleep, so you feel refresh in the next morning. That will help you to battle anxiety disorders more effectively.  

  1. Alcohol/Smoking/Coffee

Make sure to avoid all kinds of sedatives like alcohol. These substances can make a person’s anxiety worse, which is a situation you want to avoid if you’re trying to relive the strong feelings of anxiety.

It’s also important to reduce/quit smoking and coffee or other high-caffeine drinks. The reason is that anxiety gets worst with nicotine and caffeine. Patients will certainly want to avoid making their feelings of worry and anxiety worse, so it’s critical to avoid these particular substances. 

  1. Exercise

It’s important to be doing physical activity during the majority of the week. Doing physical exercise can provide several benefits. For example, it can boost a person’s mood and improve their general health. It’s important to start out with light exercise then increase the frequency intensity of physical activity.

  1. Diet

Are you eating healthy? Make sure you’re getting enough fruits, veggies, and grains in particular. It’s not definite, but studies seem to show that these types of foods can help to reduce anxiety. You can also consider options like herbal tea, which can help to calm your nerves.

A healthy diet provides your body with all the vitamins, minerals, and enzymes that you need. It is critical because it will help your body to deal with various potential issues like stress and anxiety. On the other hand, when you’re not eating a healthy and well-balanced diet it can result in many kinds of problems.

  1. Relaxation Techniques

It includes a wide range of options like massage, meditation, yoga, and visualization techniques. These are all effective activities that can help to reduce anxiety. They’re effective because anxiety disorders are about irrational fears of things. Using relaxation techniques can help to lower your heart rate, calm your mind, and be more rational about whatever is causing the disorder.

  1. Alternative Medicine

It is an alternative to prescription medications. While these options don’t have the strong chemicals found in pharmaceuticals one of the main benefits is they also lack many of the unwanted side effects that can result from taking prescription meds.  Here are various types of options and here are some of the most common ones:

  1. Valerian

Some studies show valerian helps to reduce anxiety/stress, while others show that it provides no benefits in treating anxiety disorder. It’s highly advisable to talk to your physician before you use valerian. There have been some reports of liver problems from people who have taken valerian. People who want to stop using valerian are recommended to end their use slowly, so they reduce the chance of withdrawal symptoms.

  1. Kaya

This option seems to be effective in reducing anxiety. However, it’s also resulted in various warnings or bans throughout the world in countries like the US, Canada, and European nations. One of the main drawbacks of this treatment is that there are reports of major liver damage. It’s highly advisable to consider this option with caution until there are more scientific studies done.

  1. Theanine

It is, in fact, an amino acid that’s contained in green tea and also some supplements. Some studies seem to show that theanine can help people to feel much calmer. Meanwhile, there isn’t much evidence that it can help to treat anxiety disorder effectively.

  1. Passionflower

There have been some clinical trials that suggest it might help to reduce anxiety. You can find several commercial products that include passion flower and various other herbs. Experts report that passion flower is safe, but it can also cause symptoms like dizziness, confusion, and drowsiness.

  1. Drug Abuse of Anxiety Medications

Benzodiazepines are one of the most common anxiety drugs that are involved in drug abuse. This type of medication is also known as “benzos” and used for various mental issues like an anxiety disorder. They’re used to treat disorders like anxiety disorders, panic attacks, and others.

Benzos are legal to use when a physician has prescribed them. That said, there’s also a black market for the prescription drugs. Their street names include benzos, tanks, and downers. These are highly regulated drugs in the US and classified as “Schedule IV” drugs.

Benzos can be very dangerous as well as addictive even though they’re medically beneficial and regulated by federal governments. When people use Benzodiazepines without a doctor’s prescription, it’s considered abuse. Symptoms of benzos overdose include seizures and comas. In fact, overdose can result in slow breathing and slow heart rates. This process can continue until they stop totally and result in death.

Benzodiazepines have a high potency, which can cause various unwanted effects. That includes altering the neurochemistry of the brain as time passes this can result in the drugs building up in the body of the user. It can result in physical/mental dependencies on the prescription meds.

It’s important to note that people can even get addicted to benzos after they’ve been prescribed the medications for anxiety disorders, for example. In fact, addiction to benzos can be tough for loved ones of users can be difficult to detect. It is especially true when the person uses prescription drugs.

You might be surprised about the statistics related to benzos addiction. For example, each year doctors write over 50 million Benzodiazepines prescriptions in the US alone. It’s also quite commonly used. Up to 15% of Americans’ medicine cabinets have benzos at any given time. Another key fact, the cause of almost 60% of all drug-related deaths in the US were prescription drugs.

  1. Drug Rehab/Recovery for Anxiety Medications

Due to the potency of Benzodiazepines, it’s highly advisable that people are abusing the drug get rehabilitation as soon as possible.  Various effective treatments are available. However, it’s important that a person first is diagnosed with benzos addiction. That’s the first step to get the person on the road to recovery.  

One of the main problems related to drug addiction is people often believe they can control the problem by themselves. It is true sometimes, but in most cases, it isn’t. When people are unable to kick their addiction to benzos, for example, it can result in feelings of guilt and depression. It can be very tough for people to end drug addiction themselves.

It’s highly advisable to get the help of experts since they can help:

  • Learn types of addiction, tolerance, and dependence that benzos can trigger
  • Handle life issues in a positive way
  • Find other addicts who can empathize
  • Deal with medical/psychological problems linked to drug usage
  • Design coping mechanisms to stop emotional/stress triggers