When does anxiety turn into a problem?

The American Psychiatric Association’s president responds to queries regarding a new guideline to check all persons under the age of 65 for anxiety.

How much anxiety is too much?

For the first time, a group of respected medical experts advised this week that doctors check all adult patients under the age of 65 for anxiety symptoms.

The US Preventive Services Task Force issued the revised guidelines after releasing a draft in September. Experts made similar recommendations for youngsters aged 8 to 18 earlier in 2022.

Anxiety affects millions of Americans: According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, approximately one in every five adults in the United States suffers with an anxiety disorder. Having some anxiety isn’t always a bad thing: According to experts, an internal warning system assists us in a variety of ways, including improving our performance or recognizing danger and motivating us to be more conscientious. Furthermore, it is usual to feel more nervous when confronted with stressful situations such as starting a new job, losing a loved one, or relocating to a new city.

Anxiety, on the other hand, can become more prevalent and overwhelming at times.

How can you tell the difference between protective anxiety and troublesome anxiety? And what should you do if you’re 65 or older and feeling anxious?

Dr. Petros Levounis, president of the American Psychiatric Association, responded to these and other questions through email. These are excerpts that have been altered.

When does anxiety turn into a problem?
When does anxiety turn into a problem?

How can you determine if your anxiety needs to be evaluated?

People who are anxious may strive to avoid circumstances that trigger or intensify their symptoms. Some warning symptoms include persistent dread or worry, as well as difficulty sleeping or eating.

Other symptoms may include agitation, a sense of impending doom, an increase in heart rate, perspiration, shaking, and difficulty concentrating.

If you feel like you’re worrying too much and it’s harming your career, relationships, or other aspects of your life, or if you’re sad, it’s important to talk to your primary care physician or a mental health expert. If you do not get help, your anxiety may worsen.

What constitutes “normal” levels of anxiety? What is the limit?

We all experience anxiety from time to time. You may become anxious if you have a large test, family difficulties, or financial concerns. Your heart rate may increase, you may notice increased sweating, and you may feel tense. Sometimes that feeling fades as swiftly as it emerges. But if you’re continuously worried and afraid, you need help.

What is the course of treatment like?

The first step is to consult with your doctor to ensure that there is no physical issue causing your symptoms. If you are diagnosed with an anxiety problem, a mental health expert can help you find the appropriate treatment. Most people respond favorably to psychotherapy, also known as “talk therapy,” and drugs. It has been discovered that a mix of both is the most effective.

Cognitive behavioral therapy, a sort of talk therapy, can teach a person how to think, react, and behave differently in order to feel less nervous. Medications will not cure anxiety problems, but they can provide significant symptom alleviation. Antidepressants and anti-anxiety medicines are the most regularly utilized treatments.

Patients above the age of 65 are not covered by the new recommendation. What should they do if their doctor does not offer to screen elderly adults?

Ask! You may be aware that anxiety is frequently accompanied with a persistent sense of tension, fear, and worry. However, anxiety can cause physical symptoms such as shortness of breath, exhaustion, chest pain, or gastrointestinal problems. Older folks may believe this is simply a sign of aging. However, it is critical that you discuss all of your symptoms, especially any emotional issues, with your doctor.

Is a positive screening result indicative of the need for treatment?

Clinicians should ask a few questions after positive tests, such as the duration of symptoms, degree of distress and disability, and treatment history.

Screening for any mental disorder without sufficient follow-up might be dangerous. Screening and brief interventions for persons suffering from depression and anxiety can go a long way toward enhancing early detection of mental health issues and preventing suicide deaths.

This article originally appeared in The New York Times.

If you want more tips about health please visit us

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button

Adblock Detected

Please consider supporting us by disabling your ad blocker