How do I know if I have an anxiety issue?

In this increasingly confusing and complex world we live in, anxiety is mounting - millions of people are suffering with it.

From time to time most people get anxious. It’s pretty natural to feel apprehensive when facing a testing situation, such as speaking in front of lots of people or taking a driving test or going for a job interview.

However some people have continual stomach churning frights and fears that become overpowering and destroy their daily lives.

What causes anxiety?

Some people who have never previously had agitation issues often develop anxiety after a big blow like a death, accident or family crisis, whilst some get a delayed distress; like an anxiety aftershock; months or years after the event.

Our past is always a good breeding ground for anxiety, certain places, memories, people or even smells can trigger feelings of torment and as this can happen subconsciously, it can be doubly disconcerting.

Exaggerated worry and dread about the future is very common and this can morph into ‘catastrophising’… or creating major problems out of relatively small or even imaginary issues.

Social anxiety is very common… some become anxious when with people; unsure of how to interact, they might dread getting things wrong or fear being judged… even if they are not being judged!

What are the signs?

If you’ve never experienced a panic attack or high anxiety before, what’s happening to you physically might give it away…. shortness of breath, heart palpitations, feeling faint, shaking, chest pains, cold sweats and numbness can all be signs of panic and they make you feel less than good.

Many people have a permanent anxiety grumble inside them - they feel anxious all the time and it eats them away. These symptoms can increase and decrease in relation to stress at home or at work, but strangely there often seems very little logical reason for the feeling of panic.

That’s the paradox…the distressing thing is that many people can become panic-stricken and not truly know why. Sometimes they can partially understand why they are climbing the walls, but can’t get into a balanced state of mind to rationalise the issue and ease that screaming tension.

What can you do?

Anxiety is unique to each individual and all sufferers have their own unique reasons for becoming anxious.

Anxiety is a form of psychological tension and it can be relieved. Talking therapy with a qualified and skilled psychotherapist can help an anxious person work out why they worry and panic so much and help the sufferer become calmer; more grounded and ultimately have an all-round easier life.

Sign up to our newsletter

Keep up to date with news and tips for managing emotional tension and guidance on ways to lead a fulfilling life.
View our latest newsletter here.