Anxiety Disorders

What are Anxiety Disorders?
Occasional anxiety is a normal part of life. You might feel anxious when faced with a problem at work, before taking a test, or making an important decision. But anxiety disorders involve more than temporary worry or fear. For a person with an anxiety disorder, the anxiety does not go away and can get worse over time. The feelings can interfere with daily activities such as job performance, school work, and relationships.
What are the types of anxiety disorders?
Anxiety disorder is an umbrella term that includes different conditions like phobia, panic disorder, generalized anxiety disorders etc.

Panic disorder

Clinical features
⦁ Recurrent attacks of severe anxiety which are not restricted to any particular situation or set of circumstances and therefore unpredictable.
⦁ Individual attacks last only a few minutes though duration and frequency varies
⦁ Experiences a crescendo of fear and autonomic symptoms which results in exit from wherever he or she may be
⦁ Panic attacks are not unique to panic disorder
⦁ Limited symptom attack - If panic attacks occur with fewer than 4 of 13 panic symptoms

Diagnosis- According toICD-10,
Several severe attacks of autonomic anxiety should have occurred in past 1 month-
⦁ In circumstances where there is no objective danger
⦁ Without being confined to known or predictive situations
⦁ Comparative freedom from anxiety symptoms between attacks (anticipatory anxiety can be present)
⦁ Panic attacks may be secondary to depression and if criteria for depression is fulfilled at the same time then panic disorder should not be given as main diagnosis
⦁ Palpitations, pounding heart
⦁ Sweating
⦁ Trembling or shaking
⦁ Shortness of breath or choking
⦁ Feeling of choking
⦁ Chest pain or discomfort
⦁ Nausea or abdominal distress
⦁ Feeling dizzy, light-headed, or faint
⦁ Derealization or depersonalization
⦁ Fear of losing control or going crazy
⦁ Fear of dying
⦁ Chills or hot flushes
⦁ Paraesthesias

Disorders which may co exist with Panic Disorder
⦁ Depression
⦁ Alcohol abuse and dependence
⦁ Nicotine use
⦁ Social phobia
⦁ Social phobia, OCD, PTSD

Specific Phobia
Generalized anxiety disorder


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