Anxiety is a mental illness marked by irrational fear or panic. Anxiety may be accompanied by insomnia, depression and/or an eating disorder. Emotions associated with anxiety are perfectly normal when a person is faced with genuine danger or following a traumatic events. These emotions are triggered by the hormone adrenaline, a process known as ‘fight or flight’. Anxiety only becomes a problem when it does not fade away following this danger or traumatic event. In such cases anxiety often cripples the sufferer in most areas of his or her life. Severe and persistent anxiety is characterised by worry and fear, even to the point where it prevents the sufferer from leaving his or her home. The anxiety sufferer is said to have become ‘dysfunctional’ and professional treatment is highly advised.
Types of anxiety
Anxiety is a general term describing a number of separate but similar conditions. These conditions include:
- Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD) – this condition is characterised by a state of worry and/or fear felt on a daily basis. Patients suffering from GAD constantly ‘feel on edge’
- Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) – this condition is characterised by an ongoing state of anxiety relating to a post-traumatic event e.g. car accident or military combat duty
- Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) – this condition is characterised by irrational beliefs. These beliefs typically relate to cleanliness and contamination. OCD consumes much of sufferer’s day meaning the sufferer is unable to work
- Phobias – these include irrational fears of flying, insects and heights etc.
Symptoms of anxiety
Common symptoms of anxiety include:
- Lack of concentration
- Heightened heart-beat
Treatment of anxiety
Anxiety is a highly treatable condition. When patients enter an Ocean Recovery Centre a full physical and psychological assessment is carried out by a state-registered psychiatrist. The psychiatrist determines the exact nature of the patient’s anxiety and the existence of possible co-occurring disorders such as substance abuse.
A highly structured programme of therapy is put in place. Therapy helps patients tackle the underlying issues giving rise to their anxiety. Therapy takes place in group and individual settings. Psychotherapy is complimented by modern and ancient holistic therapies. These therapies are designed to help patients overcome stress that arises in everyday life e.g. mindfulness meditation, reflexology and yoga. Cognitive behavioural therapy aims to identify thoughts and emotions giving rise to patients’ anxiety. Patients are taught how to change those thoughts and emotions in ways not likely to trigger anxiety. Patients are also prescribed anti-anxiety medications such as Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRI).
About Ocean Recovery
At Ocean Recovery we offer a ten-day to four-week rehab treatment programme for those suffering from anxiety and/or depression. Click here to contact our admissions team if you wish to learn more about this programme.