Anxiety disorder is not a result of bad upbringing of an individual nor a severe flaw of his or her character but he or she is the person who is anxiously ill that needs immediate help.
Researchers, however, discovered that anxiety disorder is the result of a chemical imbalance in the brain precipitated by long standing illnesses (like diabetes) and its reactions to environmental stresses.
An anxiety disorder is a serious mental illness in which a person experiences constant paralyzing fear and worry.
Among the symptoms are:
*** Feelings of panic and helplessness
*** Thoughts that are uncontrollable and obsessive
*** Ritualistic behaviors i.e. repeated hand washing, wiping a door knob, etc.
*** Repeated flashback of traumatic events
*** Sleeping problems
*** Shortness of breath
*** Dry mouth
*** Cold or sweaty hands
*** Muscle tension in specific body parts i.e. the neck.
They are classified into Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). OCD is defined as pathological condition of constant thoughts and fears forcing the person to perform routines.
The disturbing thoughts are called obsessions while the rituals are compulsions. A classic example is someone with an exaggerated fear of germs (obsession) manifested by constant hand-washing (compulsion).
PTSD is when an individual suffers a traumatic event such as physical assault, rape, kidnapping, death of a loved one, being sideswiped by a speeding vehicle or a military tour of duty plagued by painful flashbacks.
For diagnosis: The psychiatrist is the best and the right doctor to visit. However, there are trained counselors, psychologists whom you can approached initially. A medical doctor will first rule out an equivocal signs. For example, a hyperthyroid patient may palpitate, have sweat hands and always feel hot but he or she doesn’t have an anxiety disorder but an overactive thyroid.
A mental health professional has an interview and assessment tools designed to diagnose anxiety disorder.