It is normal to feel anxious or nervous every now and then. For example, you may feel anxious about an important meeting at work or an upcoming examination. How do I know if I have an Anxiety disorder?
What are Anxiety Disorder?
If anxiety persists for an extended period of time and affects your day-to-day living, you may be suffering from an anxiety disorder.
Anxiety disorder can be debilitating conditions that affect both our physical and mental well-being, but they can be managed with the help of a psychologist, psychiatrist or counselor.
Types of Anxiety Disorder
Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)
A person with this type of anxiety disorder has excessive worries about everyday matters for a long period of time (typically 5-6 months or more). Some other symptoms of GAD include fatigue, irritability, restlessness, trouble concentrating, muscle tension and sleep disturbances. Such a person may also have trouble making commitments, and find it tough to decide on day-to-day matters.
When one experiences recurrent panic attacks. Panic attacks are a sudden surge of intense discomfort/fear that reaches a peak within minutes.
a phobia is defined as an extreme or irrational fear of something, such as the fear of heights (acrophobia), fear of open spaces (agoraphobia), fear of insects (entomophobia) and fear of people not of your own kind (xenophobia).
Post-traumatic stress disorder
This occurs as a result of overwhelming stress from a traumatic event such as a natural disaster, physical or sexual abuse, or seeing a loved one die in an accident.
General symptoms of anxiety disorder include:
- Shortness of breath
- Cold, numb/ tingly hands and feet
- Chest pain/ discomfort
- Heart palpitations
- Difficulties remaining calm and staying still
- Fear, panic, and feelings of uneasiness
Around 100,000 persons in Singapore suffer from anxiety disorder during their lifetime. On average, they wait for six years before seeking help. (Singapore Mental Health Study, 2010)
Are you or someone you know struggling with an anxiety disorder? Call (65) 9060 3418 or email email@example.com to speak with a counselor.Learn More
What is Stress?
Stress is part and parcel of everyday life as we deal with challenges posed by work, family commitments, social relationships and financial obligations. The most dangerous aspect of stress is how easily it can creep up on you. You think that you got used to it. It may start to feel familiar, or even very normal. If you often feel frazzled and overwhelmed, it is time to take action to bring your physical and mental health back on track.
- Eat healthy and well-balanced meals
- Make time for interests, hobbies, and relaxation.
- Seek out social support. Spend enough time with those your loved ones.
- Plan your time carefully – Prioritise your outstanding tasks and start with the more important ones first.
- Get enough rest and sleep. Your body needs time to recover from stressful events.
- Exercise regularly. Your body can fight stress better when your body is fit.
- Never rely on drugs, alcohol or compulsive behaviors to reduce your stress.
- Accept that there are events that you cannot control.
- Cultivate a circle of friends and family members with whom you can share your problems openly and frankly
- Learn and practice relaxation techniques; try yoga, meditation, or tai-chi for anger and stress management.
- Keep a positive attitude
With the Covid-19 world changes you may be feeling very angry, anxious, depressed, sad, scared, and uncertain. You may have noticed an increase in depression dealing with your family who may be on your last nerve. You may be having anxiety attacks or feel that your health is suffering. You may be rotating through all of them on a daily basis as you listen to the news, worry about your job and finances and how you will manage all of these things.
You don’t have to feel like this anymore and the answer is not about engaging in destructive habits. This involves your ability to manipulate your mood by comforting or calming yourself in the face of negative emotions.
Even with Covid-19 out of the picture, there may be periods of time when things may not be quite as you had hoped and you will feel depressed. If you approach a situation in a calm state, you are better able to deal with whatever is happening in your life. You are less likely to make rash decisions or act out in some harmful way. We all tend to make poor decisions when we are feeling depressed.
The best anxiety & depression treatment
- If you truly can’t get moving, cuddle up with your pet, your favorite blanket, or any stuffed animal and treat yourself like you have the flu for a little while.
- Research something that you know nothing about, but have had an interest in it. Science, Travel, new business ideas or potential hobbies. Novelty kicks up Serotonin in your brain.
- Use physical exercise or movement as it exhausts and relaxes you. Sleep is also improved and you are paying attention to your body as opposed to agitating your thoughts. Mood will immediately improved by release of endorphins.
- Dancing is good as it involves music, which also shifts your mood. Do stupid moves that make you even laugh. It shifts the brain from ruminating.
- Cook something healthy for yourself, this is another creative outlet. Give it away if you don’t want it. It doesn’t have to be a big batch of fattening brownies, it can be a great salad or vegetable dish.