The information on this page focuses on Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD), but there are many different types of anxiety, including:
Generalised anxiety disorder (GAD) involves chronic worrying, nervousness, and tension. We all experience situations from time to time that make us fearful and apprehensive. These are natural reactions that are important for how we function as human beings. However, for some people, their anxiety can become almost constant, may have no apparent cause, or is disproportionate and excessive to the concern. It can become overwhelming in these cases, and life becomes a constant state of fear, worry, and dread. Eventually, if left untreated, anxiety dominates a persons thinking so much that it can interfere with typical day to day functioning and may lead to avoidance of regular activities.
The difference between “normal” worrying and generalised anxiety disorder is that the worrying involved is:
Symptoms may vary, but can include:
Multiple factors are likely involved. However, the exact cause of GAD is not clear. Research suggests that Anxiety may be caused by:
However, some people may develop Anxiety for no apparent reason.
Children can also be affected in much the same way adults are, although it can be harder for them to express their feelings depending on their age.
Here are some ways you can help an anxious child:
Generalised anxiety disorder is thought to impact around 5% of the UK population. It affects women more than men.
Although self-help tools can be suitable for some people, for others, they are not enough to help a person manage Anxiety. In this case, therapy may be a more appropriate treatment.
Several talking therapies are effective as a treatment for anxiety, including:
Arrange an appointment with the GP. They will ask about the issues you are facing and direct you to places in the NHS that can help you.
There are also charities out there that can support you. Anxiety UK provides a helpline for advice and support. Local Minds arrange talking therapies and peer support groups.
Select Psychology offers a wide of therapies to address anxiety and gives you the tools to cope and understand your emotions. We are a private mental health service with highly trained therapists and no waiting lists.
This is how therapy would work:
Step 1 – Get in touch: The first step is recognising you have an issue and seeking help – Book a free telephone consultation and start the process by providing a space and time to share your needs with us.
Step 2 – Telephone Consultation: You will be heard and understood through a confidential phone conversation. Often called the ‘triage’ this is where you can share more about your needs and we can advise on therapy pathways and provide initial guidance where possible.
Step 3 – Appointment Offer: We will match your needs with the best fit practitioner for your therapy pathway and offer you an appointment within two weeks.
Step 4 – Initial Assessment: Before you begin a course of therapy, your therapist will need to conduct an assessment in order agree a course of therapy with you that will best help you and address your goals. This is still part of the therapeutic process and will provide you with a better understanding of your difficulties and how you may start to approach them.
Step 5 – Your Therapy: Following on from your assessment, you will move onto therapy. Appointments are 50 minutes – these can be anything from weekly to monthly, depending on your individual circumstances. The number of sessions required to feel better will depend on your needs and therapy plan, this can range between 8-16 sessions, but in general more time is needed to address more complex issues.
Step 6 – Feeling Better: As you start to improve, you can agree on changes to the frequency of sessions as required. Ultimately, there will be a time when both you and your therapist agree that you no longer need to continue in active therapy.
1. What therapy is best for anxiety?
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is a widely used approach to treat anxiety. Research has shown it is effective at treating Generalised Anxiety Disorder, Panic Disorder, Social Anxiety Disorder, Phobias and Obsessive-Compulsive Disorders (OCD).
2. Can Psychologists help with anxiety?
Clinical Psychologists are highly specialised and trained to treat anxiety in its various types. They are trained to use Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) and a variety of other effective treatments for anxiety where a different approach is necessary.
3. Can you ever be cured of anxiety?
Yes, anxiety can be cured in the sense that the symptoms of anxiety can be alleviated and this can be temporary or last for several years.
4. How long does therapy take for anxiety?
The length of time can vary on a case by case basis and depending on the frequency of sessions. Typically therapy would take between 6 – 20 sessions taking place weekly or fortnightly, each session lasting around 50 – 60 minutes.
5. How does Anxiety make you feel?
For many people, it feels like they are constantly on high alert and unable to relax, like your fight or flight response is always turned on. A persistent feeling of panic and dread becomes exhausting after a while and takes a considerable toll on your body, which is why learning to manage and cope with Anxiety is very important.
6. What is the difference between Anxiety and fear?
They are both interrelated. The main distinction is fear is a response to known, understood threat. Whereas, Anxiety is a response to an unknown or poorly understood threat.