• What is anxiety?
  • What causes anxiety?
  • Unhelpful myths
  • How do we build resilience?
  • What can mental health professionals do to help?
  • What other resources are available?
What is anxiety?

Anxiety is stress or fear so persistent that it wears down our usual resilience and impairs our ability to function effectively and happily. At worst, severe anxiety can result in long term health injuries. In reality, anxiety can feel more like worry or stress than fear. Anxiety triggers the body’s “fight or flight” response which evolved to cope with extreme danger.

However it is triggered by both physical danger and psychological threats such as embarrassment, failure or rejection. We need a certain amount of anxiety or stress to get out of bed, let alone perform at out best.

However when anxiety or stress is too high, we perform poorly. People who learn to “settle their nerves” and tame their anxiety become more confident and successful.

What causes anxiety?

Anxiety has no single cause; often, it results from a combination of things. Some of the more common factors involved in anxiety are:

  • Trauma and stress
  • Medical conditions
  • Relationship problems
  • Bereavement or loss
  • Emotional avoidance
  • Family history
How can mental health professionals help?

  • Screening & assessment
  • Psychological education
  • Evidence based treatment
  • Controlled breathing
  • Relaxation training
  • Medication or certain natural alternatives

Anxiety affects our thinking, feeling, & behaviour, as well as our bodies and our relationships. People who are anxious cannot "snap out of it" and get better. Unless addressed, symptoms can last for months or years and result in reduced quality of life and health injuries.

Treatment by mental health professionals greatly reduces and sometimes eliminates anxiety symptoms. It also increases the likelihood of greater resilience for the future.

How do we build resilience?

  • Talk with people who care
  • Learning resilient thinking
  • Exercise regularly
  • Problem solving vs. worrying
  • Maintain a healthy eating habits
  • Face rather than avoid difficulties
  • Inform our decision making
  • Practice relaxation techniques
  • Know how and when to let go

Unhelpful Myths

  • Alcohol or illicit drugs will help
  • It’s a sign of personal weakness
  • It is best dealt with alone
  • It will go away if you ignore it long enough
Panoramic theme by ThemeFlood