Anxiety is one of the most common health conditions in Australia. For men, anxiety is even more common than depression – 1 in 5 men will experience anxiety at some point.
1 in 3 women will experience anxiety during their lifetime.
Anxiety can be a serious condition, but you don’t need to let it control you.
What is anxiety?
Anxiety is more than just feeling stressed or worried. While stress and anxious feelings are a common response to a situation where a person feels under pressure, it usually passes once the stressful situation has passed, or ‘stressor’ is removed.
Anxiety is when these anxious feelings don’t subside – when they’re ongoing and exist without any particular reason or cause. It’s a serious condition that makes it hard to cope with daily life. We all feel anxious from time to time, but for someone experiencing anxiety, these feelings cannot be easily controlled.
Some common symptoms include:
- hot and cold flushes
- racing heart
- tightening of the chest
- snowballing worries
- obsessive thinking and compulsive behaviour.
These are just some of a number of symptoms that you might experience. They’re not designed to provide a diagnosis – for that you’ll need to see a doctor – but they can be used as a guide.
Once a diagnosis is made (generally by a GP), treatment can be provided by a GP, Counsellor or they may give a referral to a Psychiatrist, Psychologist, or other suitably qualified health professional.
The important thing to remember is that effective treatments are available and, with the right care, most people recover.