Dealing with fears and anxiety
Online Therapy - Dealing with fears and anxiety
In a normal state of affairs, a state of anxiety is there to protect us, if we overcome the threat by facing it, we may get back to a relaxed state. We constantly adapt to our cultural environment but some threats may confuse our minds. Sometimes we get anxiety by signals that in fact we are able to deal with. Helping my patients to understand how the anxiety system works is one of the tasks that will allow you to start gaining control over your anxiety and fears.
When anxiety strikes, for many people the onset of symptoms takes them to the emergency clinic as they think there is something terribly wrong with themselves. At best they think it may be something to do with their heart as they are feeling their heart racing very fast. At worst when they have pin and needles in their arms and legs or simply feel paralysed in their legs, they may think that they need to see a neurologist. These are real scenarios that the lack of knowledge about anxiety produces. Anxiety manifests in our bodies with an array of sensations that for some people feel like life threatening. In this way education and knowledge are the key way to prevent anxiety overpowering our lives.
Anxiety may strike when we least expect it. For example, a married woman with 4 children who was reallocated because of her job, coped with moving her family to a different part of the country, which included finding rented accommodation, new schools for all her children and a home for her elderly mother. The remarkable part of this story lies in the fact that she coped with everything but when things were going quite well, she started to have symptoms of anxiety.
One day she was driving her husband to work. As she was driving, she was thinking that she did not understand why she had to do that. She felt trapped and that was the onset of several symptoms that included pins and needles in arms and legs. This took her first to see her GP, then a neurologist and finally she consulted with me. This scenario is not uncommon. In addition, working as a specialist in Primary Care Psychology, I have seen that most people with anxiety have had their hearts checked before seeing me. Although this is a preventative measure, it highlights the need for people to understand more about the nature of anxiety.
Another recent case was a young man that felt his legs going numb in the morning. His GP advised him to see me. After assessment we formulated that he started to feel this particular symptom when his parents objected to his girlfriend, he felt anxious about his parent’s opinion. A short course of psychological therapy allowed this man to feel better about his situation, gradually he regained control of his legs and later on was able to have conversations with his parents, allowing him to get back to a normal life.
When our bodies do not do what we tell them and anxiety or fear dominates our actions, it is time to act and consult with a Clinical Psychologist that provides therapies on how to treat anxiety, to allow you to return to a normal state of affairs in your life.
Therapy helps you to gain understanding and control over the fight or flight response and will allow you to reduce its impact on you. Having in mind that, as a therapist I create a safe environment where you can face your fears and anxiety.