Anxiety Disorders

At HPA/LiveWell, treatment for children and adults with various types of anxiety disorders is highly successful.

Living with an anxiety disorder can be difficult. There is good news – treatment for anxiety disorders is readily available and highly successful. No matter what form of anxiety disorder you are experiencing (or a family member), it can be treated successfully.

Here at HPA/LiveWell, we often use cognitive behavioral therapy to treat patients with various types of anxiety disorder. This treatment helps patients understand and learn to manage anxiety triggers and symptoms – and offers strategies to change and prevent undesirable behaviors and negative thinking patterns, which can lead to feelings of anxiety. In addition, breathing and relaxation techniques can help. Sometimes, along with therapy, the patient’s healthcare provider may recommend appropriate medication.

The types of anxiety disorders are wide ranging. At HPA/LiveWell, we diagnose and treat the following types of anxiety disorders.

Generalized anxiety disorder – This type of anxiety disorder is characterized by uncontrollable feelings of anxiety that begin to interfere with daily living including work and social life. Sufferers also experience other symptoms that may include disturbed sleep, muscle tension, irritability, fatigue and difficulty concentrating.

Panic disorder – People suffering from panic disorder experience sudden and repeated bouts of fear that can last for several minutes or longer. If the experience is prolonged, it’s considered a panic attack. Symptoms of a panic attack include the sensation of losing control and fear of impending disaster. Physical symptoms include chest pains and hyperventilation.

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) – This illness can occur after an intensely stressful experience such as war, assault or disaster. It can cause sufferers to have flashbacks during which they re-experience the ordeal. Patients also may experience bad dreams and fearful thoughts. These symptoms may lead them to avoid certain situations and feel tense or on edge most of the time.

Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) – This anxiety disorder is characterized by an uncontrollable urge to repeat an action or pattern of behavior such as washing hands, locking and re-locking a door, hair combing, touching things in a certain sequence and counting things. People with OCD are distressed by their obsessive rituals and often find that they are unable to live a normal life due to these behaviors.

Social anxiety disorder – Also known as social phobia, social anxiety disorder often begins in childhood or adolescence. Sufferers experience extreme fear in social situations. The fear is often so debilitating, that they’ll avoid social or romantic relationships. This is one of the more common anxiety disorders, and it can interfere with school and work life as well as personal relationships.

Specific phobias – This type of anxiety disorder is characterized by an intense fear of something that poses little or no threat. Phobias take many forms and may include fear of heights, spiders, mice, closed-in spaces, water, airline travel and blood. When phobia sufferers can’t avoid the cause of their phobia, they experience panic, trembling, shortness of breath, racing heart and a strong desire to get away from the source of their anxiety.

What causes anxiety disorders?

Again, there are many types of anxiety disorders and phobias, and many begin in childhood or adolescence. With the exception of OCD, women are twice as likely as men to develop an anxiety disorder. Causes can include extreme stress, medical illness, substance abuse and genetics. Severe traumatic events can also trigger anxiety disorders such as post-traumatic stress disorder.

What are the signs and symptoms of the various types of anxiety disorder?

Although anxiety is a normal reaction to stress, it becomes problematic when it’s excessive and difficult to control. Symptoms of anxiety disorder include:

  • Anxiety that interferes with your work or social life
  • Your anxiety can’t be controlled
  • Your anxiety impacts all aspects of your life
  • You’re unaware of a specific cause of your anxiety
  • You’ve experienced anxiety for three months or longer
  • You’re also experiencing other symptoms such as disturbed sleep, muscle tension, irritability, fatigue and difficulty concentrating

Post-traumatic stress disorder can arise following an intensely stressful event. Symptoms include:

  • Sudden flashbacks to the event
  • Avoiding situations that remind you of the event
  • Difficulty or inability to express your feelings
  • Feeling tense and alert all the time

At HPA/LiveWell, located in Albany, New York, we treat all types of anxiety disorders. Our treatment programs get results. Call us at 518-218-1188 to learn more – ask to speak with a Case Manager. And please don’t wait.

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