Myth-Buster | Anxiety
Up to 20% of people in the US experience some sort of anxiety disorder each year. Anxiety can impact anyone of any age, gender, or background. There are plenty of misconceptions about anxiety that can prevent people from getting the help and support they need. We’d like to cast some light on some of the more common confusions:
Anxiety isn’t an illness.
Anxiety is an emotion that we are all familiar with on some level. It is normal and can even help us perform better in some situations. But for the 20% struggling with anxiety disorders, it is an overriding sensation that can cause huge disruptions to life. It can be frustrating, scary and often isolates, but it can be diagnosed and it can be treated. The Journal of the American Medical Association reported a study of 134 adults that showed that Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) had a positive impact on all participants with reduced symptoms and improvements lasting at least a year. CBT and other talking therapies can provide tools for life for coping with anxiety disorders.
If I just wait it out, I’ll get better.
This won’t happen. The anxiety might lessen for a time, but it won’t go away and it may even get worse. It is very difficult to get past anxiety disorders without help. It is common for people with anxiety to experience depression as well, which makes getting help even more important. When we don’t get the help and support we need, we often try to solve things ourselves - medicating with alcohol or other substances, likely making things worse.
I just need to avoid the situations that make me anxious.
While in the short term, this may seem like a great solution, the reality is that the longer we wait to face a situation, the more anxious we become. The trouble with anxiety is that when we see ourselves as weak or impaired, it can spread to more and more situations in life which can leave us isolated. The best bet, is to move toward the situation with the support of others to work out the best way of approaching it. You can experience anxiety and still achieve what you need to if you equip yourself with the right tools.
Anxiety can stop us from experiencing life in all its fullness. If you are struggling with anxiety, reach out for help; don’t wait for it to get better by itself. If you need help connecting with support, please contact us - firstname.lastname@example.org.