No matter your age, gender, what job you do or where you live, anxiety disorders can affect you. I i’s estimated that more than 40 million adults in the United States have an anxiety disorder.
While we all experience worry and fear from time to time, for some, the feelings can be crippling and hinder your quality of life. With that in mind, here are five common signs you may have an anxiety disorder:
1. Excessive worrying
While lots of us worry about things in life, such as preparing for a job interview, or going on a first date, if you feel constantly anxious and feel it never goes away, this is a major sign of an anxiety disorder. If you’re the type of person who constantly focuses on what might happen, your body and mind will go into overdrive, which can cause serious problems in your personal and professional life.
Excessive worrying can be exhausting, so don’t hesitate to see your doctor. Alternatively, there are affordable and very accessible online treatments you can look into, like therapy.
2. Feeling agitated
For those who constantly feel agitated, you may become annoyed easily, or feel like you have to move around a lot. Although it’s a normal emotion to have, if you feel agitated daily, this is a sign that you may have an anxiety disorder.
Some common symptoms that are associated with feeling agitated include sweaty palms, a racing pulse and a dry mouth. These occur because your brain thinks you have sensed danger, and it’s preparing your body to react to any threats. Managing your stress is key when you feel agitated.
3. Difficulty focusing
Another common sign of an anxiety disorder is difficulty focusing. Whether you’re cooking a meal, in the workplace, or reading a book, if you’re struggling to concentrate on your tasks, this can affect how you perform. The majority of individuals diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder report difficulty concentrating as one of the main symptoms.
4. Trouble sleeping
When you get into bed, you should fall asleep within minutes, have a peaceful sleep and wake up feeling refreshed and ready for the day ahead. Unfortunately, for many, getting a good night’s sleep is near to impossible. Sleep disturbances are often linked to anxiety disorders, with lots of people waking up in the middle of the night or having difficulty falling asleep.
If you are excessively worried and fear something may happen when you sleep, this can make it hard to get some shuteye. Sleep deprivation can cause anxiety to spiral out of control, resulting in insomnia, alongside an anxiety disorder.
5. Panic attacks
Panic attacks are a feeling of sudden and intense anxiety. Although they originate in the brain, panic attacks can cause physical symptoms, like nausea, a rapid heartbeat, shaking and sweating. Although panic attacks aren’t dangerous, they can be incredibly frightening to experience.
Whether you have panic attacks going to sleep, or during the day, you shouldn’t let them get in the way of living a happy and fulfilled life. Panic attacks are a common symptom of anxiety disorders.
If you believe you have an anxiety disorder, you should never suffer in silence. There is no shame in admitting you experience any of the above. Once you’re ready to do so, you can make an appointment with your doctor who can discuss the symptoms further and provide treatment and guidance.