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Anxiety: What is it? What are the Symptoms?

By Expert HERWriter
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Anxiety related image Photo: Getty Images

I was asked to shed some light on a very common problem for women in United States -- Anxiety! I have worked with several women in my practice who have been diagnosed with different anxiety disorders and there are some great ways to reduce symptoms and problems related to anxiety disorders.

Let’s first understand what anxiety is. Anxiety is a normal part of human emotional experiences, however when your anxious thoughts begin to interfere with sleep, work or daily activities you need to seek professional support.

According to MedicineNet.com, anxiety is defined as "a feeling of apprehension and fear characterized by physical symptoms such as palpitations, sweating, and feelings of stress". Common symptoms that are associated with anxiety are feeling of apprehension or powerlessness, a lingering sense of danger or panic, heart pounding in the chest (increased heart rate), sweating or trembling, sweating or feeling weak.

**As a note of caution if you experience several of these feelings for the first time you should contact your doctor immediately because a heart attack in women share some of the same symptoms! When it comes to your health it is always better to be safe and have your doctor tell you that it is a false alarm as a panic attack than to ignore it and find out too late that you are having a heart attack!

Once you have been evaluated by your doctor, you may be diagnosed with one of several anxiety disorders. Anxiety disorders are considered mental health disorders that affect 19 million American adults. Some of the most common mental health anxiety disorders include diagnosis of:

Generalized anxiety disorder - six months of persistent worry about small or large thoughts. This can occur along with other mental health issues.

Panic attacks - start suddenly with pounding heart, shortness of breath and even chest pain. Emotionally there is a sense of impending doom, fear or terror, or feeling smothered.

Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) - recurring thoughts, images or impulses with an irresistible desire to perform irrational acts or rituals.

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) - re-experiencing an extremely traumatic event causing intense emotions and physical reactions that are uncomfortable or want to be avoided.

In addition to these disorders some times people can develop anxiety disorders from certain medications or as a results of a diagnosis from another health problem.

In my next blog we will discuss treatments some conventional and some naturopathic to help reduce the symptoms and problems related to anxiety disorders.

Live Vibrantly,

Dr. Dae

Dr. Dae's website: www.healthydaes.com
Dr. Dae's book: Daelicious! Recipes for Vibrant Living can be purchased @ www.healthydaes.com

Dr. Dae's Bio:

“Dr. Dae" (pronounced Dr. Day) Daemon Jones is a Naturopathic Physician who treats the whole person using safe and effective combinations of traditional and natural methods to produce optimal health and well-being in the lives of her patients.


"Anxiety - MayoClinic.com." Mayo Clinic. N.p., n.d. Web. 20 Oct. 2011. http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/anxiety/DS01187

"Anxiety - Medicinenet.com." MedicineNet.com. N.p., n.d. Web. 20 Oct. 2011. www.medterms.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=9947

Reviewed October 20, 2011
by Michele Blacksberg RN
Edited by Jody Smith

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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.


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