Anxiety, Fears, and Phobias

Frequently Asked Questions: Anxiety, Fears, and Phobias

Here are some frequently asked questions related to anxiety, fears, and phobias.

Q: Are there different types of anxiety?

A: Yes. Anxiety can be a general feeling of worry, a sudden attack of panicky feelings, a fear of a certain situation or a response to a traumatic experience.

Q: One day when I was driving home from work I had apanic attack. Now I’m reluctant to drive. Is this going to go away on its own?

A: What you experienced is a classic panic attack, which can come seemingly out of the blue. Now you are experiencing avoidance by being reluctant to get behind the wheel again. You can’t will away your panic attack. Instead of suffering alone, seek treatment from a professional who has experience in treating these disorders. Don’t let embarrassment stop you from returning to an active lifestyle.

Q: A close friend has just been diagnosed with a phobia. What can I do to help?

A: Support from family and friends is an important part of recovery process but ultimately the person who is suffering from the phobia will have to do most of the work. However, you can lend support by learning about the disorder, being flexible, praise small steps forward and be realistic in your expectations. Your patience will be of great help.

Q: Once before I was treated for an anxiety disorder and now I’ve been having the same feelings again. Can it be treated again?

A: When you undergo treatment for an anxiety disorder, you and your doctor or therapist work together as a team to find the best approach to treat your anxiety. That will include a detailed history of your previous treatment, as well as overall health. When treatment begins, some people feel much better after a single session while others require weeks of care. Most people are treated with therapy of some sorts while others benefit from medication. If one treatment doesn’t work, the odds are good that another one will. Don’t give up hope.

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