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What is anxiety? Symptoms of mental health condition explained

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Anxiety is often described as a feeling of unease that won’t go away, and it can disrupt your day-to-day life. How do you know if you have an anxiety disorder?

Everybody feels anxious on occasion; for example, if you’re sitting an exam or preparing for a job interview.

But some people develop anxiety without any obvious reason, and it can be exhausting.

If you think that you may have an anxiety disorder, you should speak to a doctor.

The doctor can offer you a wide range of treatments or medication to help you manage your feelings.

What is anxiety?

An anxiety disorder is a type of mental health condition, according to medical website WebMD.

There are a number of different types of anxiety, and they may be triggered by different scenarios.

Generalised anxiety disorder describes when you feel unusually worried or tense without any obvious cause.

Other people may have a panic disorder, which causes sudden, intense feelings of anxiety.

Panic disorders are often accompanied by terrifying panic attacks, which cause chest pain and a pounding heartbeat.

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Anxiety symptoms

The main sign of an anxiety disorder is feeling very worried, most of the time.

The condition can make it hard to sleep or breathe, while some people struggle to concentrate.

Some patients may also develop physical symptoms, including dizziness and trembling.

Dry mouth, headaches, excessive sweating, and a noticeably fast heartbeat could also be signs of anxiety.

“Anxiety is a normal emotion. It’s your brain’s way of reacting to stress and alerting you of potential danger ahead,” it said.

“Occasional anxiety is okay. But anxiety disorders are different. They’re a group of mental illnesses that cause constant and overwhelming anxiety and fear.

“The excessive anxiety can make you avoid work, school, family get-togethers, and other social situations that might trigger or worsen your symptoms.

“With treatment, many people with anxiety disorders can manage their feelings.”

There are a number of treatments available for anxiety disorders, added the NHS.

If you’ve been diagnosed with anxiety, your doctor will likely first suggest that you try psychological therapy.

Cognitive behavioural therapy could help you to re-train your brain to manage your symptoms.

Alternatively, there are some medications available to help relieve your symptoms.

For confidential support call the Samaritans in the UK on 116 123 or visit a local Samaritans branch.

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