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Anxiety Disorder as a Mental Health Condition, Essay Example

Pages: 1

Words: 1297

Essay

For this report, I have explored six academic articles on evidence-based diagnosis and anxiety disorder interventions. In the story, anxiety disorder has been discussed in length, its symptoms, the risks associated, and some of the interventions used to keep it in control. The mental health interventions discussed in the report include cognitive therapy based on mindfulness, curative treatment, and interpersonal psychotherapy.

Introduction

Anxiety disorder is a mental health condition that has been witnessed in European countries and other countries worldwide. The annual prevalence rates are estimated to be up to 14%, with most cases reported between 14 and 65 (Ströhle et al., 2018). In terms of gender, women w be more likely to be affected than men. Anxiety disorder starts in childhood and during adolescence from which it can advance into adulthood when not well managed. The World Health Organization was reported by Ströhle et al. (2018)  to having ranked anxiety disorder in sixth place among the mental disorders reported in 2015 (Ströhle et al., 2018). Anxiety disorder is a chronic illness that has had a real impact on patients’ lives.  Anxiety disorders exist in different forms like phobias, social anxiety.

Causes and Risk Factors of Anxiety Disorder

Since anxiety disorders come in different forms, various circumstances s are caused (Chand & Marwaha, 2020). When individuals have a separation anxiety disorder, they tend to be detached from other groups with which they initially associated themselves. They might experience nightmares, which .are mostly seen in childhood. There is also selective mutism, where individuals fear talking in social situations where they are expected to speak. This form of anxiety disorder is often witnessed in most children and adolescents. An individual might also show phobias to specific things which they fear might pose a danger to them. In this regard, they are always looking over their shoulders just in case those objects represent themselves. The fear of an individual being scrutinized in social situations could be a pointer to another form of anxiety disorder called social anxiety disorder. A person may also develop a phobia for being outside with the fear that they might be involved in accidents or land in tragedy due to them being in crowds or using other amenities. Such individuals often spend time indoors and tend to panic when they go outside.  An individual may show anxiety as a withdrawal symptom of different medication and drug intoxication.  In some other circumstances, an individual who has preexisting medical conditions like hypothyroidism, low blood sugar, cardiovascular disorders, metabolic disorders, and neurological illnesses is at risk of experiencing anxiety disorders. There is also generalized anxiety disorder, where an individual shows general anxiety symptoms like restlessness, irritability, panic, and irregular sleep patterns.

Signs and Symptoms of Anxiety Disorder

Rose & Devine (2014) established some symptoms reported by patients who were diagnosed with anxiety disorders. In their study, patients reported restlessness, distress, and fear. In clinical diagnostic setups, patients show increased heartbeat rates and irritability when asked questions about themselves. Individuals with anxiety disorders also cannot help but be worried about several things, keep a lot to them, and at some point, are often isolated when attempts are made to have them included in a group.  For patients whose anxiety disorder is related to medical conditions, they often show the fear that they might die or are generally irritable with mere provocation. With anxiety disorders related to cardio, muscular coordination of the brain, individuals with the diseases usually exhibit muscular tension. The tension can be recognized in individual talks, mainly because they often cannot construct or make complete sentences; always stammering and watching over their shoulders cause someone to attack them.

Management Interventions for Anxiety Disorder

The mental health interventions available for anxiety disorder include mindfulness-based cognitive therapy, curative therapy, and interpersonal therapy. They are discussed as follows.

Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy incorporates mindfulness strategies to understand and manage an individual’s thoughts and how the individual feels to come up with the best relief for them. As an evidence-based practice, mindfulness therapy helps relieve anxiety by teaching people the cognitive methods and meditation as a mindfulness strategy to interrupt the processes that make an individual anxious or depressed. Even after an individual overcomes anxiety, other related episodes may occur, thus bringing the need to repeat the therapy often. The treatment works by helping patients be aware of their presence, which they can eventually separate from their emotions and thoughts. With time, patients rely upon those emotions, and opinions do not have to exist simultaneously and can be controlled to relieve them of their anxiety or depression.

In the clinical setup, the principle of mindfulness has been integrated with other interventions like Dialectical Behavioral Therapy and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy for it to work well with patients with anxiety disorders. Therefore, mindfulness-based cognitive therapy is a skill that needs to be taught to patients with the behavioral disease as it helps in balancing their emotions in a bid to do away with fear and make the individual emotionally stable(Hofmann & Gómez, 2017). The strength of the intervention is that it concentrates on the individual to fix their selves. The weakness is that it is not possible in destructive environments where the individual’s life is often characterized by chaos.

Curative interventions are those that tend to solve the condition once and for all. This, however, involves collaborative medical care consisting of several community interventions such as mass screening and psychoeducation and the use of medication such as antidepressants for people diagnosed with anxiety disorders. The first-line drugs used to manage anxiety disorders include selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, tricyclic antidepressants, and moclobemide (Bandelow et al., 2017). The medication should be taken for up to a year, considering the adverse effects, efficacy, and costs. The strength of their intervention is that they work for patients, especially those diagnosed by a physician. The weakness is that some of the medications are expensive and may not be readily available for people who cannot afford the same. There is also a high possibility of the drugs being abused, mainly because most antidepressants are available over the counter.

Interpersonal psychotherapy has been established as an evidence-based intervention for several mental health problems, especially those related to depression-like anxiety disorders. The intervention focuses on the individual’s life events and how each of them contributes to the condition of the individual. The individual is then connected to a social support group to improve how they relate with other people. The therapy takes place in phases that establish a therapeutic alliance where the individual agrees to participate in the subsequent related programs. The individual is then assessed for anxiety disorder, which calls for the patients’ need to keep an inventory of their emotions and behaviors under certain circumstances. They are then taken through psychoeducation, while hope is instilled continuously to develop a focus on recovery (Cuijpers et al., 2015). The strength of this intervention is that it concentrates on mental health rather than medically suppress the symptoms. The weakness is that it might not work for individuals with social anxiety disorders due to their fear of being in crowds and other diseases related to mutism.

References

Bandelow, B., Michaelis, S., & Wedekind, D. (2017). Treatment of anxiety disorders. Dialogues in clinical neuroscience, 19(2), 93–107. https://doi.org/10.31887/DCNS.2017.19.2/bbandelow

Chand SP, Marwaha R. (2020 ) Anxiety.In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2020 Jan-. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK470361/

Cuijpers, P., Donker, T., Weissman, M. M., Ravitz, P., & Cristea, I. A. (2016). Interpersonal psychotherapy for mental health problems: a comprehensive meta-analysis. American Journal of Psychiatry, 173(7), 680-687. https://ajp.psychiatryonline.org/doi/10.1176/appi.ajp.2015.15091141#

Hofmann, S. G., & Gómez, A. F. (2017). Mindfulness-based interventions for anxiety and depression. Psychiatric Clinics, 40(4), 739-749. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5679245/pdf/nihms899248.pdf

Rose, M., & Devine, J. (2014). Assessment of patient-reported symptoms of anxiety. Dialogues in clinical neuroscience, 16(2), 197.

Ströhle, A., Gensichen, J., & Domschke, K. (2018). The diagnosis and treatment of anxiety disorders. Deutsches Ärzteblatt International, 115(37), 611. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6206399/pdf/Dtsch_Arztebl_Int-115_0611.pdf

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