Wednesday Aug 17, 2022

Everything you need to know about anxiety disorders.

anxiety

Anxiety Disorders

Anxiety is the unusual and unpleasant state of tension, apprehension, or uneasiness. It is a fear that seems to arise from some unknown sources. Disorders involving anxiety are the most common mental disturbances. Episodes of the mild form of anxiety are common life experiences and so do not warrant any treatment. However, the symptoms of severe, chronic, and debilitating anxiety need treatment. These anxiety disorders are deemed to occur in any age group. Anyone can be suffered from these disorders of anxiety such as children, teenagers, adults, or older people. The ratio of occurrence is equal among males and females.

Cause

Anxiety disorders result from decreased levels of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA). GABA is the major inhibitory neurotransmitter in the brain. Its low level in the brain leads to an increase in the state and period of anxiety.

The functional loss of the amygdala, the important brain part also leads to this anxiety disorders.

These are also linked to arise due to a continuous state of stress, tension, and worries a person is experiencing due to any reason personal, economic, or social.

Signs and Symptoms

The symptoms of anxiety are similar to that of fear and include: Tachycardia, Trembling, Sweating, Palpitations, Poor concentration, Sleep problems, Restlessness, Intense Fear.

Forms

There are eight major forms of this anxiety disorder. These are:

Stress: It is a state of feeling of unpleasant burden due to many causes on a person. Here person remains under stress continuously. It may either be psychological stress or psychosocial stress. Male are prone to develop stress more.

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder: This is the disorder that occurs after the experience of some very strange and fearful event. A person remains in a state of fear for a longer time. He even develops depression and sadness. He avoids all those things, places, and matters where he has encountered that dreadful event.

Generalized Anxiety Disorder: It is a condition of anxiety of prolonged nature in which a person suffers. This leads to too many problems for him. Due to the constant anxiety, he cannot concentrate well on his personal life. His work life also gets disturbed. A person is fearful and full of tensions and worries.

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder: Here person becomes obsessive about certain things and also feels the compulsion to do certain acts. He shows repetitive behavior and does not feel satisfied with his work or anything he does so repeat that act or deed again and again.

Panic Attacks & Panic Disorder: Here person experiences panic attacks from those things which cannot cause such attacks in a normal person. He feels intense pain and thinks that he has got a heart attack. All such feelings are due to some brain problem.

Phobias: These are the fears which a person feels from some animals, from going in front of people, from making an appearance, or from giving any performance in front of the audience. Phobia may be due to height, river, water, and closes spaces. There are likewise lots of phobias that people can feel.

Separation Anxiety: This is the anxiety that occurs after separation from a partner or a place.

Social Anxiety / Social Phobia:  This is the phobia of people or public and a person behaves very shy and he sweats and blushes in front of other people.

Treatment*

The treatment can be done through the use of benzodiazepines, barbiturates, and antidepressants. Certain behavioral and psychological therapies are also helpful in enabling a person to get rid of these anxiety disorders.

anxious personality

Anxious Personality Disorder

Anxiety comes from the “Angest”- Danish word, in German was equated with “Angst”, in English with dread, “Fearor”, while his French translations required “Angoisse”.

The significance of this state is the emotion of fear of something undefined and indeterminable, unlike the feeling of fear, which is subject to something specific, individual.

Walter Schulz believes that anxiousness is the fear of their own freedom “fear of freedom leaps to freedom”. He correlates synthesis with the idea of existential freedom, motivating human anxiety as it is the duty of inextricably linked to becoming one himself by achieving synthesis but this task can not be done perfectly, which turns into a permanent state of life.

Anxiousness begins with a state of concern, sometimes with reason, sometimes without reason and when it becomes a phobia, it will be accompanied by mental and motor symptoms.

Other cases would be those in which it is brain damage, an anxious personality disorder such as a secondary result to alcohol, somatic diseases such as neurological diseases, endocrine, demented, that would be about pathology.

We live in an age of stress, it’s no wonder that we become anxious. Essentially anxiousness lies in your nerves and on your tonsils. It can be resolved successfully with breathing exercises. Also, you have to believe that you can stop your conditions in their tracks, start your life afresh with a blank sheet, without the worry of your lost time, you are just looking forward to what it’s coming, stop self-obsessing or thinking that something is wrong with you, start thinking positive, you have to look at all the good things that are in your life, stop feeling anxious, living your life in fear, waking up with the feeling of the drain, start making plans for your future, stop feeling physically drained, start to feel strong in body and mind as you are ten years younger, stop living defensively, start enjoying life again.

Amygdala’s the one that controls anxiety, no matter how bad your symptoms are, how long you had anxious states, and no matter how terrifying your panic attacks are, the amygdala is 100% responsive for your anxious personality disorder.

Stress, breathing problems are just the triggers for this problem. Anxiety and panic attacks are not mental illnesses, they are behavior conditions caused by tiny changes in the way the brain perceives these symptoms from the sensorial organs like tonsils that act as a switch. When the switch is off it can be activated only by real dangers, and when it remains stuck on it can produce panic attacks, obsessive-convulsive diseases, post-traumatic disorders, anxious personality disorder, and phobias, even when real dangers are not present, so it produces the symptoms of fear, even when that thing doesn’t exist.

The symptoms are so real and so scary and represent causes to become scared and have panic attacks. The truth is that the symptoms are only fake sensations and fears. The most common symptoms like feeling weak, dizzy, palpitations, general fatigue, chest pain, headaches, loneliness, agoraphobia are just products of our sensorial organs.

stress

Stress

“Any stimulus acting on the body and results in certain physiological changes in the body are cumulatively termed as stress.”

Each person has a very personal view of his stress, based on his perception, his experience with other events, social support, his strengths, and biographical assets. Other factors which influence the outcome of stress are race age, gender, marital status, socioeconomic status, and early developmental experiences.

Females are less prone to develop stress as compared to males because they tend to recover quicker from illness and stresses than males and therefore live longer. Females show less physiological reactivity to stress as compared to males as well. Older people are more prone to develop it and are vulnerable to stress.

Early parental loss, quality of care, and love received in early years of life and children’s early exposures to socialization shape the response of people to different types of stress.

Causes

Stress is broadly classified into two main types;

Physiological Stress: This includes temperature, noise, hunger, disease, smoking, alcohol drinking and similar kind of such habits are considered generalized life stressors affecting most people.

Psychosocial Stress: This type includes factors such as low self-esteem, social factors like life events such as a death of a spouse, divorce, marital separation, death of a close family member, personal injury, etc. Within this type, other stress factors are job instability, economic viability, career satisfaction, marriage children, etc.

Stressors have the quality to bring about a physiological change in the bo0dy of a person. Some of the stressors produce impacts that are of short duration and others produce impacts of long lifespan.

Signs and Symptoms

Our body responds to stress via physical, behavioral, and emotional means.

Physical manifestation:

Here sympathetic and parasympathetic activity increase leading to increased heart rate, dry mount, rapid breathing, and increased blood pressure. There are nausea, heartburn, chest pains, muscle aches, and stomach upset complaints.

Behavioral manifestation

  • Social withdrawals
  • Excessive drinking and smoking
  • Drug abuse
  • Poor sleep
  • Change in eating habits
  • Carelessness
  • Impaired relations
  • Reckless behavior

These are all types of behaviors that show that a person is undergoing stress in his life and is unable to manage it.

Emotional manifestation: Here people show following signs and symptoms;

  • Anxiety
  • Dear and anger
  • Irritability
  • Sadness
  • Greif
  • The feeling of being abandoned and isolated
  • Guilt

Here people try to avoid stressors by expressing the fright and flight response.

Management and Treatment*

Treating stress is vital for survival and the health of a person. Poorly managed stress can result in disease and seriously impairs the quality of life as well results in undermining the achievement and objectives of a person.

Certain medications can be used along with certain psychological treatments. If a person is suffering from the stress of any kind he should try to stop self-blaming, not to get fixed to his past failures, and accept the fact that he cannot change things.

Do exercises and take good food. Use vitamin B complex and vitamin C.

Practice progressive muscle relaxation meditation and engage in certain hobbies to combat the stresses of life.

post traumatic stress

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder is the form of anxiety disorder in which people experience anxiety and depressive symptoms after the life-threatening and dreadful event they had faced. These events may be natural or man-made and include the death of someone who was a close family member, rape, war, flood, earthquake, murder, etc. Normally people after experiencing any such events remain fearful and frightened for some days to weeks but then they start becoming normal and their unusual mood of fear get vanished. But in this disorder, people remain fearful for more than a month so they cannot do their routine work like before because of fear and depression.

Causes

This disorder as the name implies occurs after an experience of some very bad and frightening experience. In this regard, it can be due to psychological trauma or due to an imbalance of hormonal or neurotransmitters levels. Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder is the result of any trauma of physical as well. These include any kind of abuse whether sexual, physical, or emotional, fatal road or any other accidents, kidnap, imprisonment of any jail or anywhere, drug addiction, torture, and due to some medical reasons. Children who suffered from any such abuse are likely to develop this disorder. This disorder is also linked with increased activity of adrenaline. This remains at an increasing level after the event of trauma and therefore persons feel certain depressive and panic symptoms. There has been shown changes in biochemical level in the brain in this disorder. There are low catecholamines but an increasing amount of other adrenal hormones occur such as corticotrophin-releasing hormones, which show some dysfunction within the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis.

Types

It is classified into two types

An acute stress disorder:  It is of short duration characterized by a stressful period.

Anxiety disorder: Here person experiences anxiety after an awful event for many days.

Sign and Symptoms

  • Post-traumatic stress disorder is characterized by
  • Disabling flashback
  • Autonomic hyper-arousal
  • Avoidance of cues, circumstances, and settings that are related in any way with the traumatic and disaster event
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Poor concentration
  • Increase and frequent anger.
  • Dissociative states
  • Increase irritability
  • Sleep problems

Diagnosis

This is done by evaluating the event, its severity, and the response of a person towards that event. Then check the psychological response of a person towards that event or anything other thing related to that event. The symptoms of avoidance of settings and places linked to the event also give the clue about this disorder. These all symptoms should be present for more than 30 days in such an individual. Certain physical, mental as well as biochemical tests are also done to get this disorder diagnosis.

Treatment*

This is done by medication as well as by behavioral therapy and counseling. There is a wide variety of drugs available that are used in the treatment of this disorder. These include antidepressants, tricyclic antidepressants, monoamine oxidase inhibitors, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors; other treatment is benzodiazepines, glucocorticoids, beta-blockers, neuroleptics, mood stabilizers as well as stimulants. Psychological therapy includes counseling of person and removing fear from his mind.

generalized anxiety

Generalized Anxiety Disorder

It is seen that everyone at certain stages of life experiences some sort of worries and tensions. But these are for time being and these usually go away after some period. But in some people, these worries and anxiety persist for a long time that is they suffer from a generalized anxiety disorder. It often leads to various other problems in a person’s life.

Generalized anxiety disorder is the form of anxiety disorder in which a person fears a continuous state of tension and anxiety on certain matters or events. He remains full of worries all the time and it is irrational in a sense. The people suffering from this disorder are over-concerned about their money, relations, health, and also family matters. These worries occur without any stimulus or provoking events.

In this disorder, a person feels such a constant state of tension that remains there and disrupts his personal as well as occupational life. He feels no control over his unusual anxiety state and so spends stressful life with these worries and anxiety state.

Etiology

The cause of this disorder is an imbalance in the levels of the brain neurotransmitters such as GABA, serotonin, dopamine, etc. This may be due to genetic mutation at their receptors. This disorder has also been due to the functional loss at the level of the amygdala in the brain which leads to a continuous state of anxiety in a person. Other causes are due to overuse of certain medicines such as benzodiazepines or barbiturates.

Signs and symptoms

Here person experiences psychological and physical symptoms but the number and severity of symptoms vary among different individuals suffering from this disorder.

Psychological Symptoms: These include a feeling of aggressiveness, irritation, failure to feel relaxed and comfortable, loss of concentration, feeling of some fear, and anxious thoughts over which the person has no control.

Physical symptoms: These include generalized body pain, fatigue, headache, restlessness, difficulty in going to bed or in sleeping, gastrointestinal upset such as pain in the stomach, diarrhea, and feeling of nausea.

It is a chronic type of disorder and is seen to occur at an early age. It is also seen to be accompanied by other mood and mental disorders. People suffering from this disorder cannot even recall or tell when they last felt any sort of happiness in their life.

Diagnosis

It is made based on symptoms of this generalized anxiety disorder. If anxiety is of prolonged nature and has disturbed a person’s life quite obviously, then this will easily lead to a diagnosis of this disorder. Certain biochemical tests and physical examinations are also needed to be done. Brain condition should be evaluated for making the diagnosis.

Treatment*

Treatment is done through the use of medicines and psychological therapy.

Pharmaceutical intervention

Medicines such as antidepressants are used here. These include the use of fluoxetine, sertraline, citalopram, etc.

Benzodiazepines are also utilized as they are anti-anxiety drugs. They even lead to a normal sleep pattern.

Pregabalin, buspirone, imipramine, and duloxetine are also good drugs for the treatment of this generalized anxiety disorder.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

This therapy aims to improve a person‘s thoughts and feeling and leads to the removal of a person’s pessimistic thoughts and therefore make the patient free of this disorder.

obsessive compulsive

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is a type of anxiety disorder in which a person experiences recurrent and unwanted thoughts the name given obsessions and repetitive behaviors the name given compulsions.

These habits and movements are uncontrolled over which a person has no control. A person feels the compulsion to do such behaviors. A person feels fear and apprehension and so continues doing such acts. An example is a person who feels his hands are dirty despite washing them repeatedly many times. He does not get the satisfaction of their cleanliness and continues washing them. It is considered to be a mental disorder. This disorder is equally seen in males, females, and children. It is seen that some children do such repetitive acts as to ask the same questions many times or wash the utensils number of times so that they remain free of germs.

So on this basis, people are categorized as hoarders who feel fear of throwing anything due to fear of occurrence of any bad thing. These may be doubters, washers, arrangers, and checkers. These people want to do perfect things and feel afraid if it is not done perfectly and feel that it will not be good in their right.

Causes

The causes of this disorder are thought to be decreased levels of certain important neurotransmitters such as serotonin and dopamine. There is decreased stimulation of serotonin receptors in this disorder. It may be due to a mutation in the gene carrying this serotonin receptor. This obsessive-compulsive disorder is found to be in the different members of the same family so it is an inherited disorder.

There are also seen abnormalities in the brain at certain levels with this disorder for example decrease in the volume of grey matter occurs in the anterior cingulate gyri and medial frontal gyri, as well as an increase in the volume of grey matter, which occurs in the lenticular nuclei.

Signs and Symptoms

  • The signs and symptoms of obsession in such a person include
  • Works obsession
  • Fear of contamination with dirt or germs
  • Strange fear of losing
  • Sexual obsession
  • Obsession with rules and regulation
  • Obsessive about luck charms
  • Some of these patients show an obsession with religion.
  • The compulsive symptoms  in these patients include
  • Repeated washing and cleaning
  • Due to religious fear remain busy in rituals
  • Repetitive checking of things such as checks, locks, or any appliances
  • Repeated counting
  • Speaking the same words
  • Excessive caring for his loved ones
  • Accumulating things that are of no use.

Diagnosis

Diagnosis of obsessive-compulsive disorder is made based on a person’s strange acts and behaviors of repeated nature. An examination of the whole body is necessary. Brain MRI is also undertaken to rule out any brain abnormality. The mental state is also needed to be checked so psychological evaluation is also necessary for these patients. Other baseline investigations are also normally done.

Treatment*

The treatment can be done by many methods. It includes medication use as well as psychotherapy.

The drugs used to treat the obsessive-compulsive disorder are various types of antidepressants such as drugs of groups selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors. These lead to increase neurotransmitter levels in the brain.

Psychological therapy includes cognitive therapy which is found beneficial in the treatment of this disorder. It teaches effective and healthy methods to cope with such obsessive-compulsive thoughts.

panic

Panic Attacks & Panic Disorder

Panic Disorder is the form of anxiety disorder in which a person experiences recurrent attacks of fear that something bad and unusual will occur to him.

Etiology

Panic disorder is seen in different people of the same family so it suggests something inherited and genetically linked disease. The exact cause of this disorder is not yet known. It has been linked with certain brain and psychological diseases such as bipolar disease. Bad and chronic drinking habits also lead to these panic attacks. Excess intake of caffeine is also precipitating factor. Smoking is a major cause as well. Psychological and social factors are also the reason for the occurrence of panic disorders. It has also been shown that an imbalance of chemicals within the limbic system of the brain, such as decreased GABA level may also culminate in this disorder.

The symptoms usually begin at the age of 25 years. Chances of its occurrence are similar to both male and female. Any age group is vulnerable to this disorder. Children can also be suffered from panic attacks and panic disorders.

Signs and symptoms

The patients with this disorder are usually presented with one or more physical symptoms. These are

  • Chest pain
  • Dizziness
  • Shortness of breath
  • Feeling of suffocation
  • Fear of a having heart attack
  • Churning stomach
  • Feelings of unreality
  • Fear of some disaster

A typical panic attack begins suddenly, builds rapidly, and may last only a few minutes. Symptoms can even start while the person is at rest. It often leads to fear of another attack and also the avoidance of places where attacks have occurred. Such patients then may avoid exercises or other activities which produce physical sensations like panic.

Complications

It is seen that frequent attacks eventually lead to various other psychological disorders. These people may suffer from major depression, alcoholism as well as increased drug abuse.

Diagnosis

It is made on the complaints of the patient. 4-5 attack of sudden onset of anxiety or fear in which there is a feeling of dread, impending disaster, accident, or as if he is she is going to die. It often occurs with physical symptoms such as palpitation, chest pain, choking feeling, etc. Certain tests are also done along with brain MRI.

Treatment* and management

Panic is a common complaint so effective treatment is available.

Antidepressants such as imipramine, fluoxetine are helpful in case of a frequent and severe attack.

If attacks are infrequent and limited anti-anxiety such as lorazepam is essential.

Anti-seizure drugs can be given in more severe cases.

The dose must be tapered slowly. Regular use of such drugs should be avoided.

Psychological intervention and counseling should also be done on these patients.

The practice of relaxed breathing and meditation are also beneficial. The patient should not withdraw from or avoid situations and places where previous attacks have occurred.

Specialist Consultation and Referral

The patient should consider a referral for consultation with a psychiatrist if severe attacks continue after the above treatment for four weeks.

Avoid referral for medical consultations for exaggerated medical worries.

phobias

Phobias

Phobia is the form of anxiety disorder in which a person feels intense fear from anything which is in reality not a fearful thing. Phobia is not a usual thing. Although people feel fear from so many things this fear is from actual things which are indeed very dreadful. But it is the opposite in phobia. Normally people feel fears or phobias from closed-in places, highway driving, heights, flying insects, needles, and snakes. But there are lots of so many other things as well. These phobias may be developed in childhood, but in the adult age, these may also develop.

Signs and Symptoms

Phobia is characterized by a feeling of strong fear, a person may start shaking and sweating. A person loses his control and therefore cannot escape. Along with phobia, he feels anxiety too.  It may last for a short time and the person becomes normal.

Some Common Phobias

There are many forms of phobia by which a person can feel fear. These include

Environmental phobia: people feel fears from naturally occurring things such as mountains, lakes, seas, water, storm, flood, rain, etc

Animal Phobia: In this form, people feel fear from so many animals such as dogs, cats, snakes, lizards, spiders, and cockroaches. There is a large list of such animal phobias.

Phobias of Places: This includes close spaces, places at height, elevators and lifts, etc.

Phobia of Situations: These include phobia of going to doctor, dentists, or meeting with the boss, etc

Other forms of phobia include injection phobia, phobia from undergoing any medical procedure, from flying in the airplane, phobia from delivering a speech in front of the public.

Type

Phobia is divided into many types

Specific phobia: In this phobia occur due to some specific things.

Social phobia: This type of phobia is from people or the public. It arises when doing anything in front of people such as talking, eating, or performing anything.

Causes

It is said that these phobias arise due to already stored such dreadful events in our brain, especially in the area of hippocampus and amygdale record these events as very dreadful. It is also said that the amygdala results in the secretion of certain hormones which result in a feeling of intense fear. It may lead to activation of fight or flight response.

Diagnosis

It is made based on specific signs and symptoms of this phobia.  There is a persistent fear of specific things in such a person. It may either be a social phobia, in which a person feels fear and could not go in front of people to make his appearance, or fear from performing any act or work. He not only feels fear but also shows intense shyness. These things can easily lead to the diagnosis of phobia.

Treatment*

There are various procedures by which the specific phobia can be removed. Some of them include

Medication:  Certain drugs can help relieve phobia. These include antidepressants such as monoamine oxidase inhibitors, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, as well as drugs from benzodiazepine groups.

Hypnotherapy: This therapy also claims to remove man’s phobia.

Cognitive-behavioral therapy: It leads to improvement of man’s thinking and feeling and enables a man to realize that fear is nothing but just his mind thought and there is nothing to be feared from any specific thing.

Desensitization therapy: This is the eye movement desensitization therapy which is also found to be good at removing phobia.

social anxiety

Social Anxiety

Social anxiety is the type of anxiety disorder in which people feel fear by interacting with other people or feel extremely uncomfortable in public places, or from supervision or being evaluated by the people. Such persons cannot make their public appearance or perform best in front of the audience but feel constant fear. Such patients when coming across with lots of people start feeling odd, they tremble and restlessness and sarcastic expression appears on their face and therefore they could not deliver what they wanted to. This disorder is considered to be the third biggest psychological problem. It has affected millions of people worldwide.

One of the problems with this social anxiety is that it does not come and simply go but it remains there. If a person experiences it once, he may experience it repeatedly. It may occur in a well-educated person. It is the only thought that they won’t be looking suitable and the fear of people thinking about them. These people do not want to be judged by the people and they feel embarrassed by this thing.

Signs and Symptoms

When people suffering from social anxiety and social phobia start to interact with other people, they feel hot flashes in the body, they feel a lump in their throat when they try to speak so they could not speak up. They feel discomfort in the stomach, their throat and mouth get dried, their hands and body start trembling, their heartbeats very fast, and they sweat too much that their clothes are drenched in sweat. Other symptoms characterizing this disorder are fast breathing, blushing, muscle tightness, difficulty talking, and dizziness. These are the physical symptoms.

Psychological symptoms include the feeling of worries before the occurrence of any event, an extreme amount of self-consciousness, fears of being noticed as confused and embarrassed, and avoidance of meeting people.

Etiology

Although the exact cause of this disorder is not known. It is thought that due to an imbalance in the levels of brain neurotransmitters, this disorder arises. It may be due to mutations in the gene. Another theory tells that due to some bad experiences in the life of people, they start to fear their re-occurrence. This thing in them leads to the development of this anxiety state.

Diagnosis

There is no accurate criterion for making a diagnosis of social anxiety and social phobia disease since no such lab tests are available. It is made based on symptoms and complete history. It can be confused with other disorders so it needs a better understanding of the doctor and clarity of symptoms along with a proper medical examination.

Treatment*

The treatment involves the use of certain medicines as well as some psychological therapies. Medicines used for the treatment of these problems are antidepressants such as fluoxetine, citalopram, etc. These problems can also be treated with the help of benzodiazepines such as diazepam. Other symptoms of this disorder are also treated by using some drugs such as increased heart rate is controlled by using beta-blockers. Psychological therapies help to make people confident. They remove the anxiety by knowing the exact cause.  Relaxation techniques and behavioral cognitive therapy are also beneficial.

Separation Anxiety

Separation Anxiety

Separation Anxiety in the form of anxiety disorder which is characterized by a feeling of intense anxiety by a person after leaving his home or certain place where he was living. It also arises due to separation from someone’s close and dear family members due to strong emotional attachment. This type of anxiety is commonly found in children when parents want them to go to school, but they refuse to go and the reason is the sense of fear of being abducted or fear of losing the parents. When they are alone at home or anywhere, especially at the night, they may report unusual perceptual things and experiences.  

This separation anxiety is considered a normal stage of development in children. It is known that a newborn, after attaining some age, becomes familiar with his surroundings and feels good among his parents, and starts to cry due to fear when someone else tries to play with him. He only feels safe when he is with his parents. In children, it begins at the age of eight months and vanishes at the age of 15 months. So this is considered normal in them.

Causes

The exact cause is not known. But only the fear of separation and a person’s disability to cope with this fear leads to separation anxiety. It is commonly seen in children and adults who do not leave their place or their loved ones because of this anxiety and fear. This anxiety arises due to people’s fear of monsters, the dark, animals, muggers, kidnappers, burglars, car accidents or from airplane travel, and various other events or circumstances that are considered as presenting a danger to the person or to the integrity of the whole family of that person.

Signs and Symptoms

  • Separation from home or from loved ones leads to the development of the following conditions in a person.
  • A constant state of worries such as he will die due to an accident or he will be kidnapped by someone
  • Refuse to go alone anywhere due to some fear.
  • Fear of going to sleep alone so refuse to sleep or going to sleep
  • Experience nightmares
  • Continuous distress
  • Complaints of many physical symptoms which are of repetitive nature. The physical symptoms include increased heart rate, sweating, headache, nausea, or stomach problems.
  • Depression
  • Sadness
  • Poor concentration.

Such symptoms remain for about a month.  They often lead to problems in a person’s social, economic, educational as well as personal life.

Diagnosis

It is done based on strange symptoms in people which arise after leaving someone or someplace to whom he was very much attached emotionally. Certain tests are also undertaken to rule out other causes or diseases. A complete history is important.

Treatment*

This disorder needs no such medical treatment with the help of drugs. It can be treated with the help of therapies or different strategies.

Cognitive-behavioral therapy is considered good which enables the patients to overcome such anxiety state. It can be done on children as well as teenagers along with adults. It is an important therapy and it proved very beneficial.

Parents should guide and advise their children and help them to overcome this fear. They should assure them that nothing bad will occur to them if they go out of the house.

Amna Sheikh

Amna Sheikh is a medical doctor with a Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS), Bachelors in Economics and Statistics.  She is also a medical writer working as a freelancer for 10+ years and she is specialized in medical, health, and pharmaceutical writing, regulatory writing & clinical research. All her work is supported by a strong academic and professional experience.
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