Anxiety is something everyone experiences at times, and feeling anxious is a perfectly natural reaction to some situations.
Anxiety is a feeling of unease, like a worry or fear, that can be mild or severe. Everyone feels anxious from time to time and it usually passes once the situation is over.
It can make our heart race, we might feel sweaty, shaky or short of breath. Anxiety can also cause changes in our behaviour, such as becoming overly careful or avoiding things that trigger anxiety.
When anxiety becomes a problem, our worries can be out of proportion with relatively harmless situations. It can feel more intense or overwhelming, and interfere with our everyday lives and relationships.
Anxiety can show in a variety of ways. This can be as changes in your body, in being constantly worried or changes in your behaviour, such as becoming overly careful or avoiding things that trigger anxiety.
Anxiety types and symptoms
The symptoms of anxiety include irritability, restlessness, a feeling of being on edge all the time, feelings of worry that you can’t control, difficulty with concentration and difficulty with falling asleep or staying asleep. While these symptoms are something everyone experienced occasionally, when it starts to affect your daily lifestyle – that’s when its a problem. Coping with anxiety is something that can be dealt with by therapy and psychiatric treatment. There are many different types of anxiety so to really figure out your problem, you will need a professional to help you. Therapy can help you with an array of things and anxiety is one of them.
Panic attacks help
People with generalized anxiety often go through the symptoms listed above, but panic disorder is characterised by panic attacks. Panic attacks are a sudden and intense attack of terror and apprehension. These can also be brief. They mostly peak after 10 minutes but sometimes such anxiety attacks can last for hours.
There are two seemingly contradictory characteristics of these panic attacks: they come out of the blue (as the sufferers say) and they are highly predictable in certain situations – as both the panic attacks therapists and victims would agree. An experienced counsellor can very precisely predict the attacks of “horror” with hyperventilation, palpitations, fast heart-rate, sweating, tremors, feeling of “I am going to faint”, “or “I am going to lose my mind”, and more.
What is CBT?
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, commonly referred to as CBT, is a therapeutic approach widely used in the management of mental health difficulties.
CBT helps individuals to identify and challenge negative, unhelpful thought patterns, and replace these with ones that are more helpful. By recognising and changing these negative patterns, it can help to change the way we think, feel and behave.
CBT explores current issues and difficulties rather than focusing on the past. Working with a qualified CBT practitioner will help you learn new skills to alter behaviours and apply these into everyday life.
CBT has been well researched and is recommended by NICE for the management of anxiety, depression, OCD, phobias, PTSD and depression.
How long a course of CBT lasts is dependent upon a person’s individual needs but you can typically expect a course to comprise of between 5 and 20 sessions, with each session lasting up to 1 hour.