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  • Are you simply 'putting up' with the symptoms of anxiety?

    Author: HealthTimes

Anxiety is a normal part of life, but anxiety that is severe, constant and interferes with normal life may have reached the stage of being a disorder.

One in three of us will have an anxiety disorder at some point in our lives, with one in seven adults suffering from an anxiety disorder in any given year.

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Although anxiety disorders are the most prevalent mental health conditions in Australia and New Zealand, many people experiencing pronounced states of anxiety do not seek medical help.

Associate Professor Lisa Lampe, a member of the RANZCP Anxiety Disorders Working Group today spoke in depth about the new clinical practice guidelines for the treatment of anxiety disorders.

‘We know not all anxiety is bad for us, but if your anxiety levels are creating distress and reducing your ability to live life the way you’d like to, help is available’ said Associate Professor Lampe.


Medical Officer- Rehabilitation
St Vincent's Private Hospital Northside
Human Resources Advisor
St Vincent's Hospital
Registered Nurse/Clinical Nurse (Accident and Emergency Department)
SA Health, Flinders & Upper North Local Health Network
Registered Nurse
South Coast Radiology

‘Many people living with anxiety disorders have excessive fears and worries, which can cause months and years of distress and can be very disabling.

‘It is important for people living with these conditions to know that they are treatable’.

‘Worrying too much about everyday things, all the time, can make it difficult to sleep and be very fatiguing. Intense anxiety in social situations because of a fear of embarrassment, critical judgement or humiliation may lead people to start avoiding situations where there are other people and to isolate themselves.’

‘If you experience a surge of intense fear or discomfort – a racing heart, feeling sweaty and difficulty breathing – which comes on suddenly and is over in just a few minutes, it may be a panic attack’, said Associate Professor Lampe.

‘One panic attack does not mean you have an anxiety disorder as these are quite common in the population, but if you keep having these experiences, or if worry about having more attacks is stopping you from doing the things you need and want to do, then it is worth seeking help.’

Associate Professor Lampe emphasizes that anxiety disorders are chronic conditions that may not get better by themselves, or without treatment may last for months or years.

A general practitioner can assess your symptoms and initiate treatment, or refer you to see a psychiatrist or psychologist if you need it.

‘There are a range of effective treatment approaches available and initial treatment should be selected in collaboration with the patient, taking into account their treatment preferences, symptom severity, and issues of accessibility and cost’, said Associate Professor Lampe.

‘The right treatment can help you get to a place where your anxiety does not control your life anymore, and you are able to get on with living a healthy, independent and rewarding life.’


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