What is anxiety disorder? Mental health expert shares 3 ways to cope

Every year millions of people suffer from anxiety. This mental health condition is quite common but often ignored. We avoid its symptoms by saying that life is difficult or that ups and downs are an integral part of life. But did you know that many people also suffer from anxiety disorders, where they experience intense and extreme levels of worry and fear?

People experiencing it often feel at a loss for words to express the situation. Rohini Kesavan Rajeev, senior psychiatrist and founder of The Able Mind, spoke to Harzindagi and said that some people are more likely to suffer from anxiety disorders than others.

Did you know that according to a report published by the World Health Organization on September 27, 2023, anxiety disorders affected 301 million people worldwide in 2019? So, psychiatrist Rajeev shared some ways to deal with this situation.

What is anxiety disorder?

The psychiatrist said that anxiety disorder is followed by excessive fear and worry, and it can manifest as,

  • Panic disorder in which the patient had panic attacks
  • Social anxiety disorder in which a person feels extremely stressed and fearful in social settings
  • Separation anxiety disorder in which people feel extremely anxious or fearful about being separated from loved ones

There may be other situations in which negative thoughts and emotions can overwhelm a person and adversely affect them.

What are the symptoms of anxiety disorder?

Symptoms of Anxiety Disorder

According to experts, people suffering from anxiety disorders experience a variety of negative emotions, including fear and anxiety. He added, however, that for anxiety symptoms to be called a disorder, the symptoms must be severe enough to last much longer than the condition itself and disrupt everyday functioning enough to cause severe distress to the person. Is.

How to deal with anxiety disorders?

how to deal with anxiety disorders

The expert said there are some ways to deal with any mental health condition (including how loneliness can affect sleep patterns), but a person has to find what works for them. They should consult a health care professional who performs psychotherapy and prescribes medication if the condition is severe. They can help you identify triggers and suggest ways to deal with situations.

Here are some ways to deal with anxiety disorder,

  • Calm yourself down when you’re feeling anxious and overwhelmed. The expert suggested trying the 5-4-3-2-1 technique to remember and feel your surroundings. For example, notice five things around you, touch four things, try to hear three sounds, identify at least two smells, and taste one thing. If your friend or loved one is experiencing these things, ask them to lie down on the floor and help them with this technique.
  • You can also practice square breathing or the 5555 technique to calm yourself. When you’re feeling anxious, close your eyes and place one hand on your chest and the other on your stomach and focus on your breathing. This will help distract you while you focus on the movements above and below your stomach. You should inhale through your mouth, count to five and then exhale while counting to five.
  • The third technique involves splashing cold water on the anxious person’s face a few times to calm them down. This helps reset the overstimulated sympathetic nervous system and regulate one’s heart rate and breathing, the expert said.

Who is more likely to experience an anxiety disorder?

Who is more likely to experience an anxiety disorder

Psychiatrist Rajiv said that there is a class of people who are more likely to experience anxiety (how to deal with anxiety) disorders than others. This also includes,

  • people with a traumatic past or childhood
  • People who find themselves constantly in adverse situations
  • People who struggle with poor sleep patterns have unhealthy lifestyles and less resilience
  • People who have experienced oppression due to discrimination on the basis of caste, class, ethnicity, different abilities, displacement, gender, sexuality etc.

It’s important to keep in mind that you provide a comfortable space for a loved one struggling with an anxiety disorder. If you need a safe space and can’t find it, you should consult a therapist who can guide you through this difficult phase.

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