flower cAnxiety disorders are the most common types of emotional disorders as they affect more than 25 million individuals per year. Anxiety is a normal reaction to stress and can be beneficial in some situations. For some people, however, anxiety can become excessive and can negatively impact their lives. There are a wide variety of anxiety disorders such as generalized anxiety disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, social phobia, and panic disorder. Anxiety disorders are often characterized by chronic, long-lasting anxiety that negatively impacts individuals day-to-day lives and overall well-being.

Some common symptoms associated with anxiety disorders include excessive worry and stress, insomnia, change in appetite, muscle aches, headaches, upset stomach, sweating, and shaking. Symptoms of a panic attack may include difficulty breathing, dizziness, blurred vision, and rapid heart beat. Some people with anxiety abuse alcohol and drugs in an attempt to provide relief to the symptoms. It is believed, however, that individuals who drink alcohol and take certain types of drugs may experience stronger and more frequent panic attacks because the level of certain receptors become lower. Therefore, using alcohol and other drugs in an attempt to alleviate symptoms of anxiety and panic attacks may actually increase, rather than decrease, the symptoms.

Cognitive Behavior Therapy is considered to be one of the most effective treatments for anxiety disorders. The goal of Cognitive Behavior Therapy is to change individuals’ irrational beliefs and behavioral patterns in order to cope with fear and anxiety. Cognitive Behavior Therapy also teaches individuals how to identify triggers of anxiety and reframe myths associated with anxiety as well as behavioral techniques in order to alleviate the physiological symptoms of anxiety.