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On this website of online pharmacy you can find more information about anxiety disorders and the causes and symptoms of anxiety disorder. You can also find information about treatment options available for anxiety disorders and which steps you can take yourself immediately.

Difference Between Anxiety and An Anxiety Disorder

We all have feelings of fear. A healthy dose anxiety is also useful. Fear ensures that we prefer not to enter dangerous situations. So it is actually a survival mechanism.

However, when the fear spreads to, for example, most social situations, fear of taking to the street or fear of being in dirty spaces, it is no longer a useful survival mechanism. When the fear is present so often or so strongly that it interferes with someone's functioning, it is one Anxiety Disorder

Symptoms of an anxiety disorder

In anxiety disorders, feelings of anxiety are unjustifiably strong or often present; so strongly or often that someone suffers from it or is hindered in his or her functioning.

The fear that one feels with an anxiety disorder can be focused on a specific object or situation. However, a general feeling of tension, without being specifically focused on anything, can also mean that there is a disorder.

While there are wide differences between anxiety disorders, panic attacks and street fear are also common symptoms of an anxiety disorder. A panic attack is a period when an intense fear is felt and in many cases palpitations, sweating, tremors or gasping are a problem. The fear of dying is also a common feeling that people experience during a panic attack.

Street fear (agoraphobia) means that someone is afraid of going out alone, standing in line or traveling by train, because in such a situation a panic attack could occur. Someone with agoraphobia will avoid these scary situations to avoid a panic attack.

Causes of an anxiety disorder

An anxiety disorder is usually caused by a combination of biological, social and psychological factors.

First, heredity plays a role; they are more common in one family than in another. A shortage of the neurotransmitters serotonin and norepinephrine in the brain can cause anxiety and anxiety in the body.

Upbringing can also play a role. When parents themselves have anxiety complaints or are anxious, they can (unconsciously) 'give' their children all kinds of fears. This puts the child at an increased risk of developing an anxiety disorder himself.

The disorder can also arise after a major event in the environment, for example after the death of a loved one or after a discharge.

Furthermore, a person's character traits determine whether or not an anxiety disorder develops. Someone who dares to stand up badly for himself, is insecure and closed, seems more likely than someone who is assertive and strong in his shoes.

An anxiety disorder often co-occurs with depression or other illnesses, but can also exist on its own.

Types of anxiety disorders

There are different types of anxiety disorders such as phobias, panic disorder, compulsive disorder and generalized anxiety disorder. These disorders are very different from each other. For example, in phobias, the fear is focused on a concrete object or situation, while a generalized anxiety disorder creates a more general feeling of fear. This disorder can have various causes and both symptoms and intensity can vary. Through this article you can find out whether there is an anxiety disorder and / or other psychological complaints.

Forms of anxiety disorders

Anxiety disorders come in different guises. A subdivision is made into the following forms:

Specific phobia

A specific phobia focuses on an object, animal or situation. Although people with a phobia often know that their fear is not real, coming into contact with what they fear always leads to a violent fear response and in some cases a panic attack. That for which the fear exists is avoided as much as possible.

Well-known phobias are fear of heights, fear of flying, claustrophobia, fear of the dentist and spider phobia. When the fear focuses on one object, animal or situation, the fear is in many cases easy to handle and does not always hinder someone's daily functioning. However, when it does, therapy can help get rid of a phobia.


Hypochondria (fear of illness) can be described as an intense fear of being seriously ill, despite the fact that there is no medical evidence for this. People with this anxiety disorder often undergo extensive hospital examinations and although it is consistently confirmed that there is no serious illness, the anxiety remains strong or even gets worse.

Social phobia

People with social phobia have the idea of ​​being viewed critically and making mistakes in company. They often appear very shy in company and have difficulty making contacts.

Someone with a social phobia experiences an intense fear of having to perform in one or more social situations. When such a situation arises, the person is overcome with fear, which in some cases can lead to a panic attack. People with social anxiety disorder know that their fear is unreasonable or exaggerated, but this does not lessen the fear. They prefer to avoid scary situations, which can lead to someone feeling isolated and lonely.

Panic disorder

Panic disorder is characterized by the experience of repeated and unexpected panic attacks. During such a panic attack, an intense fear is experienced and this is accompanied by various physical symptoms, such as palpitations, sweating, tremors and nausea. People who suffer from a panic attack often feel like they are going mad, passing out, or having a heart attack.

When panic attacks start to control someone's life, there is a panic disorder. A panic disorder can occur with both street fear and without street fear.

Compulsive Disorder (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder)

People with a compulsive disorder (obsessive compulsive disorder) have recurring compulsive thoughts and / or actions. For example, the person feels compelled to repeatedly wash their hands, tidy up the house, pray, or keep checking that the gas is off.

The compulsions are aimed at preventing or reducing enormous anxiety and fear in the person concerned that something terrible is going to happen, such as contracting an infectious disease. The obsessions and compulsions usually take a lot of time and disrupt the person's daily routine.

Generalized Anxiety Disorder (Worrying Disorder)

Everyone worries or worries about something from time to time. That is completely normal. However, when worry starts to rule your life, you may have a generalized anxiety disorder (GAD). Someone with GAD is actually constantly living in great fear. Fear of what is to come or fear of things that have happened in the past. This fear is accompanied by worrying about things that could occur or that could have happened, without there being any concrete reason to do so. People with GAD worry about many things in their daily life, such as health, study, work, finances, friendships, housing, relationships, etc.

It delivers a lot stress to worry all the time and it is also very tiring. Complaints that come with this are fatigue, tension, palpitations, dizziness, concentration problems, muscle pain, sleeping problems, mood complaints and irritability. It can often take years for someone with GAD to seek help. Medication is often used immediately, while psychological treatment can have a very positive, lasting effect.

The fears persist because of the way of thinking. This way is overestimating danger, underestimating one's own capabilities and constant worrying. During the therapy you will learn to break through old habits and deal with your fears differently. This form of therapy has cognitive therapy. In addition, solution-oriented therapy is also used. This means that we will use your own strengths, ideas and solutions in the recovery process. You will also receive a workbook called "insight and overview". This makes it clear how your personality style may maintain certain complaints.

Posttraumatic stress disorder

Post-traumatic stress disorder is a response to a traumatic experience to which someone has been exposed. The traumatic experience consists of one or more events in which someone is confronted with actual or imminent death. The individual has responded with intense fear, helplessness or horror.

In a post-traumatic stress disorder, the traumatic event is constantly relived on the basis of unpleasant memories that persist, recurring nightmares and / or flashbacks. One tries to avoid reliving this and other stimuli that come with the trauma as much as possible, often one experiences a general dulling of the emotional life. In addition, people with this disorder often suffer from sleeping problems, irritability, concentration problems and exaggerated startle reactions.

Treating anxiety disorders

Anxiety disorders are usually treatable. This often uses cognitive behavioral therapy, anti-anxiety medications or a combination of both.

During cognitive behavioral therapy, the therapist will work with you to determine exactly what makes you anxious, what goes through you at such times and how this fear can be tackled. By learning to think differently about the fear, you can learn to deal with feelings of fear effectively.

Furthermore, by learning breathing techniques and relaxation exercises, you can learn how to get more rest and relaxation in your body and how to prevent possible panic attacks.

For complaints related to psychotrauma, such as post-traumatic stress disorder, there are specialized treatments aimed at dealing with trauma. An example of this is EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing).

Medicines prescribed for anxiety disorders are usually antidepressants or sedatives such as alprazolam, diazepam, clonazepam en lorazepam.