There are several types, or manifestations of Anxiety Disorders:
* specific phobias, and * generalized anxiety disorder - also called"free-floating
NOTE: "Free-floating" is misleading, though; everything is connected to some
thing - in this case it simply means that the connection isn't yet clear.
Each anxiety disorder has different symptoms, but all the symptoms involve
excessive, irrational fear and dread. Use the Menu below to go to the specific
one(s) you are interested in reading about.
Commonly major depressive disorder/reaction and other anxiety "disorders accompany
this disorder. Generally, the anxiety disorders are the most common, or frequently
occurring, mental disorders. They consist of a group of conditions that share extreme
or pathological anxiety as the main mood or emotional tone disturbance. Anxiety, which
may be understood as the extreme form of normal fear, consists of mood, thinking,
behavior, and physiological activity disturbances.
These include panic disorder (with and without a history of agoraphobia), agoraphobia
(with and without a history of panic disorder), generalized anxiety disorder, specific
phobia, social phobia, obsessive-compulsive disorder, acute stress disorder and post-
traumatic stress disorder
Dawn Cove Abbey
Deerfield, (Yarmouth County) Nova Scotia, Canada - 2008 rev: 2020
|Anxiety and Anxiety "Disorders":
These are Reactions and States of Being
They are not "disorders"
Specific Phobia: this
is an intense fear of
something that poses
little or no actual danger,
such as closed-in places,
tunnels, highway driving,
water, flying, dogs, and
injuries involving blood.
These phobias aren't just
extreme fear; they are
irrational fear of a
The Anxiety "Disorders/Reactions" consist of a group of conditions that share extreme
or pathological anxiety as the main mood, or emotional tone disturbance. These may be
understood as the extreme form of normal fear, consisting of mood, thinking, behavior, and
physiological activity disturbances.
The anxiety reactions are the most common, or frequently occurring,
mental/emotional debilitating states. While they affect millions of people age
18 years and older, they now occur among much younger people, too -
It results in fearfulness and uncertainty, and is characterized by having
recurring intrusive thoughts or concerns ("worries"). Frequently, they will
avoid certain situations out of worry.
This is mostly accompanied by such physical symptoms as sweating, trembling,
dizziness and/or rapid heartbeat.
Anxiety is a response or reaction to a threat, either real, or perceived,
to our well-being; physical emotional, mental, and spiritual. As such,
it too is a circumstantial (often temporary) variant in human behaviour.
It can also arise due to threats to our cherished beliefs, and ideals: because
of the emotional value we attach to them, any apparent threats or attacks
upon them have greater impact than some other stressful events. Because
of this, when such threats arise, their impact seems to be much greater.
Anxiety is an emotional state,
* tension is the average individual's
physical reaction to stress and anxiety,
while stress is a temporarily induced
psycho-physiological imbalance caused
by an apparent threatening event (this is
a single aspect of stress - see Stress)
for a more complete description.
The various forms of Anxiety all are
Most of us have at one time or another
been in situations where we were
so emotionally aroused or upset that
our ability to think simply disappeared.
Example: someone "froze at the wheel",
in an automobile accident. "Freezing"
or "getting rattled" are just different
descriptions of an extreme anxiety state
that is the psychological equivalent to
physiological shock (or PTSD).
Anxiety can originate from lack of security, the need to be loved, and feelings of inferiority. It
is sometimes defined as a fear of reality; that it is an escape mechanism. It often involves
alcohol or phobias. However, the more severe reactions are mostly due to frightening or
Often, anxiety and the related reactions and behaviours are symptoms of a lack of self
confidence in individuals; instilling or restoring self confidence usually eliminates many of
the problems. But the more severe ones are based on fear. See further below for other details.
Clinically diagnosed anxiety is not just being a bit worried, you can't just "chill out a bit" or "get
over it". It eats into your wellbeing, your confidence, your health and your life and it is 24/7.
When someone cancels, or ducks out, or makes a “pathetic” excuse please understand that it
isn't personal, it isn't laziness, it isn't being rude. It's because they can't physically do it. When
someone needs supporting/encouraging/ hand holding it isn't pathetic, it isn't attention-
seeking, it isn't childish - it's because they are desperate to beat it but can't do it alone.
"Anxiety sucks, being isolated and believing your friends don't care, sucks even more”.
Have you ever had a night out planned, or arranged coffee or a beer with friends, and
suddenly the 4 walls you inhabit seem the only safe haven because it's the only place you
don't have to pretend you are okay, so you cancel.
Or when you are invited out you tell them how terribly sorry you are, but you've already
booked up that weekend, when you are actually just really busy holding it together in your
So the first problem starts, all by itself. People stop asking you and the isolation that at first
wasn't true becomes your only truth.
do want to talk, they just don't know how to say it some days.
And in work every passing comment is negative, you constantly do more to get over the feeling
you are not good enough. The exhaustion from not sleeping because you panic all night over
what you cannot influence, means you make mistakes, you live in a fog and it is a vicious circle.
Klaas Tuinman M.A.
Life Self-Empowerment Facilitation
at Dawn Cove Abbey
Comments and Questions are welcomed