There are more than one hundred different symptoms that can be associated with anxiety and they can differ from person to person. This alone makes diagnosis quite difficult and when you take into consideration that many of these symptoms can be caused by various physical conditions and illnesses, you can understand why diagnosing and managing your anxiety can be quite challenging at times. Many of us have experienced mild anxiety or worries, especially when we face a change or a new challenge. However, the anxiety disorder sufferers experience anxiety at inappropriate times and quite frequently; this affects their relationships, their activities, and their lives in general.
So, what are the symptoms of anxiety?
As we have already mentioned, different people can experience different symptoms, some are feeling anxious all the time, others get sudden and unexpected anxiety attacks; some have only mild worries and fears, while others can suffer from a pretty severe anxiety and the combination of all the different symptoms in the individual sufferers are endless.
The symptoms can be grouped into physical and emotional. The most common physical symptoms of anxiety disorders are: racing heart, perspiration, stomach pain, tremors, insomnia, frequent urination, dizziness, chest pains, burning skin sensation, nausea, muscle twitching, and more. The most common emotional symptoms of anxiety are fear of dying, feeling restless, irritability, feeling overwhelmed, tension, etc.
Millions of people suffer from anxiety attacks, most commonly known as panic attacks. Panic attacks are periods of intense fear, apprehension, anxiety, and even terror, and can be quite frightening and upsetting. If a person experiences only one or two such attacks in a space of a few years, this is considered to be normal and usually harmless. However, if the panic attacks are frequent and severe, then this is most likely a panic disorder.
The symptoms of anxiety (panic) attack:
1. A sudden and unexpected surge of panic.
2. Fear of losing control.
3. Racing heart (heart palpitations).
4. Chest pains.
6. Hot or cold flashes.
7. Trembling or shaking.
8. Stomach pain.
11. Tingling in the face.
Anxiety attacks last for a few minutes and the symptoms can be sometimes mistaken for heart attack symptoms. This is why it is important to seek immediate medical attention; the good news is that a person cannot be physically harmed by a panic attack, even though his fears tell him otherwise.
Panic attacks can also be the result of other emotional disorders and conditions like post-traumatic stress disorder, social anxiety disorder, withdrawal from alcohol and drug abuse, phobias, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and others.
Once panic attacks occur this often leads to a constant fear of having another panic attack in the future, and some people even avoid visiting the places where a panic attack has taken place in the past. What causes the panic attacks though? They can be caused by constant stress, alcohol and drugs abuse, family history, and abnormalities in the brain.
It is believed that around five percent of the adult population will experience a panic attack at least once in their lifetimes. If the condition is persistent though, then consulting a medical professional is the best course of action. In many cases, if no physical illness is found, the person will be referred to a psychologist or psychiatrist, and the most common therapies that are used to treat a panic disorder sufferer are cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), psychotherapy, medication, and alternative therapies like acupuncture, diets, and exercise. For immediate (although short-term) relief the doctors advise the sufferers to breathe into a paper bag.