is recognition of a certain predisposition toward anxiety,
which can be thought of as a kind of physical threshold
to develop anxiety that is set a little lower for some individuals.
Understanding the physical basis for the disorder helps
an individual reduce the natural tendency to compare him/herself
with others and feel badly, and it also acts to correct
the common notion that "anxiety is all in your head."
this mean that people with a physical predisposition toward
anxiety will inevitably develop an anxiety disorder? Not at
all. The potential for anxiety is greatly influenced by childhood
experiences, how a person was raised, the relationships a
person develops and maintains during his/her life, and an
individual's current life experiences. These and multiple
other personal/social/environmental factors determine whether
anxiety breaks into the forefront, and whether it does so
strongly enough to merit a diagnosis of an anxiety disorder.
for people with anxiety very often involves addressing more
than one problem, as many people with anxiety present with
a variety of other diagnoses and conditions. Therefore, individual
treatment often encompasses a number of techniques and treatment
packages in addition to the ones described in this section.
of Medication for Treating Anxiety Disorders
number of medications have been found to be useful in treating
anxiety disorders, including antidepressants, benzodiazapines,
and beta-blockers. Your physician or a psychiatrist can prescribe
the medication that he/she thinks would work best for you.
people who present with anxiety should be given the option
of medication as part of their treatment. The value of medication
is that it can help reduce a person's anxiety level;
thus, it can make it easier to participate in psychotherapy
and implement various therapy principles and approaches. Some
drawbacks to a medication-only approach to treatment are that
people's problems, their thoughts about their problems,
and the ways that they commonly use to deal with these problems,
still exist. Consequently, when the medication is stopped,
anxiety symptoms most often return. For these reasons, it
is best that if you do take medication for anxiety, you also
Use of Psychotherapy for Treating Anxiety Disorders
as with medications, there is not one single type of therapy--there
are numerous different types. Psychotherapy treatment interventions,
just as medical interventions, must have scientific evidence
of effectiveness in reducing symptoms. Researchers develop
treatment techniques based on their theoretical understanding
of the disorder being addressed, but they do not consider
the techniques as valid until they have been shown in clinical
studies to effectively reduce symptoms. Often researchers
will compare the effectiveness of different therapy models
and techniques to determine which technique or combination
of techniques is most effective.
studies conducted at major universities and medical schools
throughout the world consistently demonstrate that cognitive-behavioral
therapy (CBT) is effective for the treatment of anxiety disorders.
Moreover, when tested a year or more after stopping therapy,
the majority of people who had CBT maintain their improvement.
cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) is not the only effective
model for anxiety treatment, it is the most extensively researched
and generally regarded as a main-line approach to treating
anxiety disorders. In CBT, the goals are not only to reduce
your symptoms but to keep those symptoms from returning. Among
the variations of cognitive-behavioral therapy are models
that heavily emphasize behavioral interventions, others cognitive,
while yet others combine both types of interventions. The
anxiety treatment described in this section consists of both
cognitive and behavioral approaches.