Anxiety is an adaptive reaction that everyone experiences from time to time. Anxiety alerts us to possible threats of danger, and it enables our body to respond in ways that help keep us safe. This response is a useful survival mechanism.
It’s only when anxious reactions become disproportionate to the situations and circumstances faced that it is viewed as problematic. Ironically, a common response to such anxiety is to worry about it, which further increases anxiety levels.
For about one in 12 people, anxiety can become so severe and prolonged it can impair daily functioning. For these people, anxiety means being constantly fearful, and worried or being so scared of certain situations that they are unable to face them. Severe anxiety can lead to other problems like depression, relationship difficulties, or drug and alcohol abuse. (University of Sydney, 2007)
In a survey conducted in 2007, anxiety disorders were the most common psychological disorders, affecting 14% of people in Australia aged between 16 and 85 years. (Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2009)
Anxiety disorders often occur in conjunction with major depression and alcohol or drug abuse, and in severe cases may be associated with suicide, with or without depression. Chronic anxiety may also be associated with increased risk of cardiovascular problems.
Talking to me about your anxiety will help free you from a worrying and fearful life.