Did you have anxiety as a child or did you develop it later in life?
It’s more common that people develop it as they age. Life throws all types of obstacles at us and we have to find a way to manage the stress in a healthy way. Sometimes a person developing anxiety “can’t see the forest for the trees”. In other words, they don’t realize the way they are reacting to their stresses mentally, physically or spiritually. Which may be a sign of developing anxiety.
What causes anxiety?
It’s the body’s natural response to exuberant stress. Experiencing occasional anxiety is a normal part of life for everyone. It can occur when there’s a tremendous amount of stress placed on someone for any reason. As we age, short occasional bouts with mild anxiety can occur when we are faced with stressful family health issues, finances or raising children during the particularly difficult ages. This anxiety is short-term and can be categorized with normal stress.
When is my anxiety not normal?
The Mayo Clinic gives a wonderful explanation! Anxiety that occurs daily (frequently) could involve worries about everyday occurrences or just daily life. Fears, worry, and stress grip the mind so tightly it manifests in physical conditions. Common symptoms for everyone can be chest pain, verbal uncontrollable sounds, hair pulling, nail-biting, fidgeting, inability to pay attention, sudden feeling of rise in body heat, throat closing, increase in heart rate, an unshakable sense of danger or doom and many others.
Women and men experience different types of physical symptoms of anxiety. Women tend to grind their teeth or experience jaw pain from clenched teeth. Men may experience back pains and muscle cramps.
When these anxious feelings overwhelm you and climax within minutes (panic attack) your anxiety may need treatment. If your anxiety keeps you from interacting with your family, friends, or in social settings, you may need treatment. If your anxiety is related to a phobia that affects the quality of daily life, you should see a doctor.
What are the types of anxiety?
Just like anxiety can be developed for various reasons, there are various types of anxiety. GAD or general anxiety disorder is one of these types. GAD generally affects every day functions and activities. It can lead to a low quality of life. SAD or social anxiety disorder is often related to social phobias. Separation anxiety disorder is also commonly diagnosed. Medical conditions can also lead to anxiety. Some anxiety can even lead to Stress Eating.
These are not every type of anxiety, just a few.
What if no one believes me? What if they think I’m creating drama? I’m the rock, what if they no longer think I’m strong?
It doesn’t matter if your friends or family believe you. Some people allow their anxiety to go untreated out of fear. They worry that their reputation as a strong person will be tarnished. Some worry if their employers find out they will be fired or denied a promotion. If anxiety is kept bundled up and attempts are made to hide it from others, it very likely & will present itself at the worst time. It may manifest as a massive panic attack or through addiction. It is highly recommended to seek help from your doctor. Don’t try to do it on your own. Even if someone chooses not to share with family, friends, or employer, it can still be shared in-depth with your doctor.
Why is this happening? I’ve never been like this before!
Anxiety can develop as young as childhood. If a child experiences a trauma whether physical or mental, anxiety can set in at young age and remain throughout life. Or the traumatic event could be suppressed in childhood and then present itself later in life. Anxiety can develop due to a devastating illness diagnosis. Substance abuse can lead to anxiety or aggravate recovery from such addiction.
Anxiety can develop due to extreme stress. This can occur at any age. How our minds cope with stress can directly relate to an anxiety attack. Anxiety is not exclusive to any sex, race, or age.
Will I ever be cured? I just want my life back.
Yes and no.
Some types of anxiety are situation based. When the situation changes your anxiety may subside. Another type of anxiety is environmental. Hopeful a change in environment helps. Other types of anxiety are serious mental health issues that need evaluation and monitoring by a doctor or therapist.
No matter what type of anxiety you are experiencing, it’s important to seek medical help and find someone you can confide in.
This article is in no way a substitute for medical diagnosis and should not be relied on as medical advice. I share this little disclaimer with you because I write to you from experience, not medical education!