Anxiety is the word used to describe several disorders you may experience as fear, nervousness or worrying. Feelings of anxiety affect how we view things and how we behave. Frequently they can become real physical symptoms. At its worst, anxiety can seriously impact your ability to deal with everyday life.

Do you ever have "butterflies in your stomach" or feel a sense of dread before something challenging such as a test, job interview or examination? These feelings are perfectly normal. Anxiety, however, becomes a problem when fear or worrying get so bad you are unable to sleep or deal with everyday life.

There are several specific types of anxiety-related disorders. See if any of these sound or feel familiar to you. If so, your EAP counselor can help you find a treatment that will give you peace of mind.

A "panic disorder" is when you have a brief or sudden attack of intense dread. You may find yourself shaking, confused, dizzy, short of breath or nauseous. Panic attacks can last anywhere from a few minutes to several hours.

A "social anxiety disorder" is when you have an intense fear of being judged by others or publicly embarrassed. If you find yourself avoiding other people or group situations, this may be the problem.

"OCD," or "obsessive compulsive disorder," is the cause of repetitive thoughts or actions which are repetitive, intrusive, and cause you embarrassment. If you find yourself doing the same things over and over again for no particular reason, OCD may be the cause.

"PTSD" means "post traumatic stress disorder." If you have been raped, robbed, abused or suffered negative experiences in the military, school or workplace, you may be suffering from PTSD.

Finally, "separation anxiety disorder" may be the cause if you feel anxiety when separated from a person or place which gives you feelings of safety or security.

There are other anxiety-related disorders. Your EAP counselor can help you determine if you are affected by one or more, and help you find the relief you need.

If you are experiencing any of the following signs and symptoms, Please contact your EAP counselor.

  • Feeling apprehensive
  • Feeling powerless
  • Having a sense of impending danger, panic or doom
  • Having an increased heart rate
  • Breathing rapidly (hyperventilation)
  • Sweating
  • Trembling
  • Feeling weak or tired

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