Okay, answer honestly. How many times have you called someone schizo, bipolar, or OCD just because they did something that seemed a bit out of the ordinary? You use these terms in normal everyday vocabulary, probably because you aren’t familiar with what anxiety disorders really are. Sometimes, people who don’t deal with the reality of how anxiety affects people throw around insulting language like these. If you do the same. it’s time you reconsider your words.
There are a number of anxiety-related disorders, yet they aren’t as known to the general public as they should be. But it’s much more common than you think. The National Institute of Health reported that about 18% of American adults actually have some type of anxiety disorder – that’s one in five people who have mild to severe anxiety.
There are instances where people experience the symptoms of anxiety and go to the doctor, only to find out they aren’t diagnosed with a physical disease, but a mental disorder. This can be overwhelming and may cause more of the anxiety. Therefore, you should remember one important detail – you are not alone.
The most common myth surrounding anxiety is that it isn’t even a “real disease”. People who suffer from anxiety can be easily disregarded as worrywarts or over-thinkers. Needless to say, it is a medically acknowledged disorder. You can be diagnosed with anxiety, but the good news is, you can also be treated.
I’ve also heard of people saying that those with anxiety should avoid stressful situations altogether. This may be a suggestion said with good intentions, but let’s be realistic here. In this world, that seems impossible to do. Management of the average person’s life is already stressful – what with the unexpected situations that happen on a daily basis. What’s more, seeing yourself as a fragile and vulnerable victim of the disorder can also lead to more anxiety.
Panic attacks don’t usually involve fainting and hyperventilation. If you’ve never experienced a panic attack, it might be hard to explain. There are actually some online videos that “document” people’s panic attacks, and on the comment section you can see how some of the viewers express their disbelief over the situation. I personally can’t tell whether those are falsified or not, because it’s not the same for everyone. You have your usual symptoms such as chest pains, racing heartbeat and difficulty breathing, but the common factor is you think you’re going to die because of how bad it is.
One of the worse misconceptions about anxiety is the belief that people who experience it can just one day wake up and snap out of their mental state.
This belief is connected to the mindset that anxiety disorders are just anxious people who got stressed out, and don’t need treatment to get better. You can’t just drink or sleep your way through it – you have to undergo the proper therapy and take the prescribed medication.
If you think that therapy can get in the way of your daily schedule, just think of how non-treatment may worsen your situation. Act while you can still function – you don’t want to wait for the day the disorder gets the better of you.