Although most everyone has experienced some form of anxiety, for some it becomes debilitating and keeping up with normal activities becomes unmanageable. Those who suffer from anxiety may avoid places, constantly worry, engage in obsessive behaviors, or use substances to manage their symptoms. The constant stress related to anxiety continually activates the body’s “flight or fight” response. Over time, the mind and body become exhausted.
Anxiety is a very common mental health issue. There are different types of anxiety disorders, including generalized anxiety disorder, social anxiety, phobias, obsessive compulsive disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder. Each of these varies in severity and symptoms. Several factors influence the development of anxiety. Anxiety results from a complex interaction between the mind and body. An individual’s genetic makeup and health can precipitate the development of anxiety symptoms. In some families, anxiety can occur from generation to generation. Additionally, neurological factors, such as neurotransmitter balance, play a major role in the brain’s functioning. Lastly, our social environment has significant influence over our lives and any conflict with others may contribute to anxiety. Understanding and identifying the causes of anxiety are important aspects of therapy.