Worrying is a natural response to the expectation of future problems. And it affects just about everyone to some degree. But worry can become a serious problem if it takes up most of your time. You have a problem with worry when you often feel anxious about a future event, or if you continually make negative predictions about the future. In addition you may have a worry problem when you consistently avoid certain people, places and things that are not ordinarily a cause for concern.

Generalized Anxiety Disorder

The number one symptom of Generalized Anxiety Disorder is worry. You have a problem with worry when you are excessively apprehensive more often that not over the past six months or longer. Some of the more typical symptoms are physical in nature and include: muscle tension, stress and sleep disturbances.These can cause fatigue, difficulty concentrating, restlessness, and overall irritability.

Excessive worry can easily become obsessional thinking – a more disturbing, unwelcome train of thought that is unreasonable and consumes most or all of your time. You try to put the thoughts out of your mind but they soon return. Obsessional thinking can signficantly interfere with normal activities, even causing a person to miss work or school. Prolonged excessive worry can trigger very high anxiety.

Fear of Panic Attack Can Trigger Panic Attack

Significant stress and worry about upcoming events can trigger panic attacks. Even the anticipatory worry of having a possible panic attack can actually cause a panic attack. Panic differs from most forms of anxiety in that the worry is not fear of external dangers or events, but rather changes in your own body in the form of rapid, pounding heart beat, shortness of breath, feeling light-headed, and often dizziness. The worry of a possible panic is so strong that the fear of dying is screaming inside your head.

Escalation from worry to panic can be so fast that the person is caught by surprise. The heart begins to race, breathing becomes short with the feeling they can’t get enough air and are about to pass out, all accompanied by chest pains resulting in a fear of heart attack.

Adrenaline is released signaling the body to fight or flee. The fight-or-flight response is so strong it causes the person to perspire, making their skin more slippery and difficult for an enemy to grasp. The fight-or-flight symptoms coupled with high anxiety panic can last for hours, leaving the person exhausted and fearful they will never recover.

Avoiding Panic

Panic can be avoided by simply stopping worrying and thereby scaring yourself. Panic will end if new anxious thoughts don’t cause more adrenaline to be relased. The key is to stop worrying so much that it causes catastrophic thoughts that subsequently maintain and increase anxiety. Understanding that shortness of breath, dizziness and feeling spacey are harmless symptoms that can’t hurt you is crucial to controlling and minimizing panic.

Mindful breathing and muscle relaxation techniques are highly effective for reducing worry, stress and anxiety.

This report is not a diagnosis. We hope this information can guide you toward improving your life.
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