Anxiety is a normal and often healthy emotion. All mammals have it and it helped us throughout history. Everyone feels anxious now and then. For example, when someone is when faced with a problem at work, before taking a test, or before making an important decision. However, when a person regularly feels disproportionate levels of anxiety, it might become a disorder. Anxiety disorders form a category of mental health diagnoses that lead to excessive nervousness, fear, apprehension, and worry.
The term "anxiety disorder" refers to specific psychiatric disorders that involve extreme fear or worry, and includes generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), panic disorder and panic attacks, agoraphobia, social anxiety disorder, selective mutism, separation anxiety, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), specific phobias and others.
Some behavioral signs and symptoms of anxiety
• Restlessness and agitation
• Inability to sit still and remain calm
• Social withdrawal and isolation
• Exaggerated startle reflex
• Inability to properly meet responsibilities at home, work, or school
• Decreased ability to perform normal activities of daily life
Psychotherapy, or psychological counseling, involves working with a therapist to reduce anxiety symptoms. Please do know that it would be impossible and unhealthy to eliminate anxiety completely. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is the most effective form of psychotherapy for anxiety disorders.