Anxiety is one of the most frequent problems for people seeking therapy. It is a feeling that all of us experience in normal life circumstances. Seeking help makes sense when the resources you have aren’t sufficient to deal with the amount of stress you are experiencing or if the anxiety becomes pervasive or unmanageable. There are genetic/biological predispositions to anxiety as well as situational causes.
Anxiety and stress management depend on the symptoms and their severity. Age, gender, degree of social support available, cultural/ethnic background, and other factors need to be considered. In addition to therapy, I often recommend homework to build skills to manage the kinds of thoughts that trigger anxious feelings. I use evidence-based treatments such as the Cognitive Behavioral approach, substantiated by psychological research. Other methods I use are taken from eastern and western practices, including relaxation techniques to reduce symptoms. Referrals for medication evaluation are individually determined.
Among the anxiety disorders I have treated are:
- Obsessive ideation (can’t stop thoughts despite wanting to do so)
- Obsessive compulsive disorder (uncontrollable fear-based actions that are not rational or necessary)
- Phobias – intense, overwhelming and irrational fears causing avoidant behavior that restricts options.
- Eating disorders -fear of loss of control or fear of vulnerability manifesting in unhealthy eating behavior
- Panic disorder – sudden physical symptoms of acute stress without a recognized source or cause
- Post traumatic stress disorder – experiencing symptoms of extreme distress from past trauma
- Generalized Anxiety Disorder- symptoms of distress, excessive fear/worry which hamper functioning
The following is a self screening inventory to help therapists diagnose and treat Generalized Anxiety Symptoms
Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)
As you answer the following statements, think about how you have felt and acted in the past six months. If you agree with the majority of statements you may have GAD.
- I never stop worrying about things big and small.
- I have headaches and other aches and pains for no reason
- I am tense a lot and have trouble relaxing.
- I have trouble keeping my mind on one thing.
- I get crabby or grouchy.
- I have trouble falling asleep or staying asleep.
- I sweat and have hot flashes.
- I sometimes have a lump in my throat or feel like I need to throw up when I am worried.
To see books I recommend on anxiety please go here.