Anxiety Disorders in Northern New Jersey
Everyone will experience anxiety at some point. If you’re feeling anxious and need help coping, turn to Psycho-Educational Associates, leading providers of anxiety disorder treatment in Totowa, Little Falls Township, Woodland Park and the surrounding areas in New Jersey.
Anxiety is an Ordinary Part of Life
Many people feel anxious when faced with a difficult decision, a problem at school, financial difficulties, or tension at work. Anxiety disorders are different. They can interfere with a person’s ability to live a healthy, ordinary life. An anxiety disorder is an illness of the mind, brain, and body. Constant fear and uncertainty can act as a serious handicap in the lives of people with anxiety disorders.
What Causes Anxiety Disorders?
Like other forms of mental illness, anxiety disorders are not the result of weakness, personality flaws, or upbringing. New research on mental illness shows that many of these disorders are biochemical in nature, and pertain to changes in the brain’s chemistry. They are also linked to various forms of environmental stress.
Anxiety disorders may be connected to functioning of circuits in the brain that regulate fear, stress, and other emotions. By influencing the way information is transmitted through nerve cells, stress causes changes in the way the brain functions. It is believed that stress-conditioned circuits of information are partially responsible for anxiety and similar conditions.
Studies show that the connection between strong emotions and the parts of the brain that store memories are different in some people with anxiety disorders. In addition, anxiety disorders appear to run in families, which mean that genes from one or both parents could be partially responsible. Finally, environmental factors — such as trauma, drug use, or prolonged exposure to stress — may trigger a latent anxiety disorder in people who are genetically susceptible to such conditions.
What Are the Symptoms of an Anxiety Disorder?
Symptoms of an anxiety disorder can vary, but they frequently include:
- Frequent fear and uneasiness
- Racing thoughts
- Sweaty palms/feet
- Inability to be calm
- Restless sleep
- Hyper-awareness of the environment
- Frequent thoughts of danger
- Muscle tension
What are the Types of Anxiety Disorders?
There are different types of anxiety disorders recognized by medical professionals:
- Panic disorder, which occurs in between 1-2% of people. It is characterized by feelings of intense panic that repeatedly strike and carry no warning. Having a panic disorder can be frightening and include feelings of choking, having a heart attack, the fear of “going crazy,” or losing one’s mind. Attacks can be accompanied by sweating, chest pain and palpitations of the heart.
- Social anxiety disorder, a condition that affects 7% to 13% of the population. While it is normal to feel self-conscious or shy sometimes, people with social anxiety disorder tend to feel this way in most social situations. They may be constantly worried about how they will perform when interacting with other people. They tend to be especially fearful of being judged or even noticed by others.
- Specific phobias, which are strong, intense, irrational fears of specific objects or situations. Common phobias include the fear of heights, snakes, spiders, or flying. The degree of fear is generally inappropriate to the situation and can be quite serious if it causes the person to avoid ordinary situations.
- Generalized anxiety disorder, a problem that affects about 3.1% of people, is characterized by excessive worry and fear, even though nothing, in particular, is provoking anxiety.
Don’t let anxiety continue to interfere with daily living. Here at Psycho-Educational Associates, we have experienced, caring professionals standing by ready to provide you with anxiety relief and a variety of other services. Contact us today to schedule your appointment!