However, there is a more debilitating experience of anxiety in which the episodes last much longer and include distressing physiological and emotional symptoms. This type of anxiety, considered an anxiety disorder, typically interferes with everyday living and impedes our ability to easily interact with others.
Common physiological symptoms of anxiety disorders include: sleep disturbances; changes in eating habits (either eating more or less); having a racing or pounding heart; having either sweaty or cold, clammy hands; feeling chest tightness; feeling restless; shaking or trembling; breathing distress; dizziness; and stomachaches.
Some of the more common emotional or thought symptoms of anxiety include: intrusive thoughts, difficulty focusing and/or concentrating, excessive worry about everyday issues, feeling angry or irritable, catastrophizing, avoiding social interactions, loss of interest in activities that were once enjoyable, and numbing feelings by drinking and/or using drugs.
In my practice, I treat all forms of anxiety disorders – from generalized anxiety disorder, social anxiety, panic attacks, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder. After learning the symptoms, and discerning the history of the anxiety, I draw from a combination of therapies that are well suited to resolving anxiety. These include cognitive-behavioral therapy, mindfulness therapy, psycho-education, psycho-dynamic therapy, and narrative therapy. For more deeply rooted anxiety, I offer EMDR, a powerful integrative psychotherapy approach that has been proven highly effective in treating anxiety and trauma.