Occasionally anxiety or fear is normal and it is an integral part of life. Often we feel concerned about many issues. For example, if a relative is having health problems, being indecisive about important matters, prior to examination, before having a new relationship, facing problems in the workplace etc. Like these situations there are many situations where being concerned is acceptable and it is temporary and moderate. Moreover, in many cases it is desirable too.
But when this anxiety is lasting without being temporary and inhibits the different activities of daily life (personal, family, social, occupational) and also creates problems in relationships which grow continually, then it is in the stage of disease.
Types of cases
Generalized Anxiety Disorder
The person suffering from this disease is constantly obsessed with excessive, exaggerated, irrational thinking about various factors like health, wealth, education, family etc. and always lives in fear. Gradually, this concern and anxiety dominate the person’s thoughts which interferes with the daily activities of the person.
The person, who suffers from this problem, faces some physical and emotional symptoms. Among physical symptoms headache, nausea , blurred vision, feeling pressure in the muscles, drying tongue and throat, breathing difficulties, palpitations, excessive sweating, frequent urination, tiredness, etc. are noticeable. And mental symptoms are unrest, mood swings, problems with focus, forgetfulness, sleeping problems etc.
Social Phobia or Social Anxiety Disorder
Such patients are afraid of social situations. They feel very concerned about mixing or talking with someone. They become very self-conscious in front of people and afraid of being insulted, embarrassed, deported, objected and also remain extra careful not to hurt anybody. They suffer from anxiety about one or two weeks ago of any social event or rally. They always try to avoid people. They have to face problems to make friends or to maintain friendship. Becoming reddish in shame in front of people, sweating, body trembling, nausea, and suffering from stomach aches are seen in this type of people.
The person suffering from this disease is frequently scared of the unexpected panic attack which starts suddenly and creates intense fear and causes rapid heartbeat, palpitations, sweating, body trembling, breathlessness, restlessness etc. Typically these syndromes increase acutely within 5 to 10 minutes and it lasts 20 to 30 minutes or more than 1 hour sometimes. As a result of this attack, the patient may think of a heart attack. At this time, the patient is afraid of death and loses control over himself. Besides, he/she always remains concerned about the next attack. They are afraid of and avoid those places where the panic attacks occured in the past.
These people are intensely afraid of any particular object or animal or place which is unreasonable. They try to avoid the causes of fear. Many times the person himself understands that this fear is unreasonable but can not control it. These fears can be in the presence of a certain stimulus and may even be imaginative. This fear is so strong that it reduces the daily work, efficiency and self-confidence of the affected person.
They can be alarmed by normal insects, animals, height, bacteria, thunder, flying etc. In some cases, these fears arise from childhood but in most cases, it begins in adolescence and adulthood. This problem starts suddenly and can make irritative concern about the issues which weren’t a concern previously.
Agoraphobia or Open Space Scare
The meaning of the word agoraphobia is scare in the open space. But in reality this is a little complicated. Because some of them are afraid of being in the elevator (claustrophobia), many are afraid to go out of the house or afar (monophobia), some are afraid to go for shopping, some are scared to ride in public transport and some people are afraid to go to an open ground. In fact, patients avoid those places where they feel unsafe. They think if they are in danger, they can not be easily freed from that place. So this anxiety creates panic attacks. Because of that the patient avoids going to those places. Sometimes, the place of previous experience of panic attack can be a cause of fear and another panic attack. It is rare among children but women are more likely to have this disease.
The probable causes of anxiety disorder are hereditary factors, environmental conditions, stress, physical illness, oppression in childhood, problematic personality, biochemical structure of the brain, alcohol addiction or any other reason.
Generally, anxiety disorders are treated by medicines and psychotherapies (collectively or individually). The drug is antidepressants – which are used in small quantities. Among the antidepressants, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI) is more effective. Sometimes short-acting benzodiazepine and beta blockers (propranolol, atenolol) etc. are applied in the treatment.
There are cognitive behavior therapy (CBT), behavior therapy and cognitive therapy among psychotherapies. Apart from these therapies, breathing relaxation, progressive muscular relaxation, adherence to slip hygiene, meditation, social (family, friends, colleagues, neighbors) support etc. are effective in the treatment of anxiety disorders.
There are certain aspects by which it will be determined the method of treating the patient of anxiety disorders. Those aspects can be the intensity and kind of the disease, the patient’s personality and socio-economic status, related physical and mental illness, etc.