It can be hard to differentiate reasonable worry from an unhealthy level of anxiety. Everyone experiences periods of stress and worry at some point in their lives. For most people, worry is a normal and temporary reaction to a negative or stressful event. Although unpleasant, this type of worrying typically doesn’t lead to serious problems. People with mental illness however tend to experience anxiety more frequently and more intensely. Below are ten signs that your level of anxiety may warrant professional help. Please note that these indicators are not designed to make a diagnosis of an anxiety disorder or to take the place of a professional diagnosis or consultation.
- Avoiding people, places, or situations due to fear of discomfort
- Your worries have had a negative impact on your relationships
- Drop in performance at school or work
- Difficulty concentrating or remembering things
- Intense or frequent feelings of nervousness
- Rapid or dramatic shifts in mood
- The use of rituals or compulsions to cope with worry
- Sleep and appetite changes (sleeping/eating more or less than you use to)
- Unexplained or recurrent headaches, stomachaches, or a poor immune system. Emotional stress can manifest itself in the form of physical ailments such as colds, tension, upset stomach, or headaches.
- Trouble coping with life’s demands and/or difficulty functioning on a day to day basis
The most important thing to consider is how anxiety is impacting your quality of life. If anxiety is interfering with your relationships, career, social life, or hobbies, it may be time to seek professional help. The earlier you obtain help, the quicker you will be on the path to recovery. If you are worried that you or a loved one may be suffering from an anxiety disorder, call Dr. Racine for a free consultation today.