A programme for people with mild to moderate anxiety
For more information or to make an appointment for an assessment please ring your SF office
Palmerston North: 06 355 8561
Levin: 06 368 6116
Dannevirke: 06 374 8797
Anxiety is a normal and healthy response to danger and threat e.g feeling stressed before an interview or exam, or scared that you can't cope with demands placed on you. Anxiety focuses the body and mind on dealing with a problem- the body gets ready for action ( fight or flight) and the brain focuses on thinking through every possible escape route or dangerous scenario. The flow of adrenalin into the blood stream helps us run faster and think our way out of a tricky situation more quickly.
This is useful when there is a life threatening situation to deal with, but can be unhelpful when there is no threat. When we are anxious we feel wound up- nervous, worried, tense and unable to think clearly. We may go over a problem in our minds until we come up with a solution.
Feelings can range from being a bit uneasy to a continuing sense of dread, or feeling panicky and frightened.
Anxiety functions similarly to physical pain, calling attention to danger or risk. However, the complex mixture of physical sensations, thoughts and actions means that we can exaggerate the potential danger and feel tense and anxious even though we are not currently under threat. Some level of anxiety is normal, but at times, our level of anxiety can be too high for us to get on with everyday life.
It is ok to ask for help. Most people recover from anxiety.The most important thing to do is to get help and support.
A professional who is trained to recognize and treat anxiety can help you deal with your symptoms and protect you from further episodes.
Psychological treatment and/or medication can make a difference.
Types of Anxiety Disorders
There is a range of anxiety disorders. The six most common anxiety disorders are: Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD); Specific Phobia; Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD); Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD); Panic Disorder; Social Phobia.
Anxiety can affect people in different ways such as:
We feel the effects primarily in three ways:
Physical effects: Racing or pounding heart, sweating, breathlessness, dizziness, shaking or trembling, chest pain or tightness, nausea and stomach pain.
Thoughts: Thoughts are often repetitive, with a fixed view of a situation that may bear little relation to reality. Thoughts often escalate e.g. from "Oh no, a traffic jam, I'll be late for my meeting", "And if I'm late I might miss this sale, disappoint everyone and be fired".
Behaviour: Anxiety can make us withdraw or avoid situations that we know make us stressed.
For some, anxiety causes such sustained discomfort and disruption to their everyday life that it is called "anxiety disorder".
Anxiety disorders are common, but the sooner you get help, the sooner you learn to control these conditions so they don't control you.
For more information about anxiety disorders, symptom checklists, effective treatments and where to get help please contact us.