Question for Betty.

Is there such a thing as getting anxiety because I feel anxiety coming on?  Some times I feel it very mildly, and then it gets worse because I'm worried it's going to hit me, and when I try to think about other things it gets worse.  Is that normal?

Betty's Answer.

While almost everyone feels anxious and worried sometimes, people with anxiety disorders can be overcome with anxiety and fear. Anxiety is a very normal response to some situations.  It becomes a problem if it gets in the way of daily routines or relationships. 

I congratulate you for naming this feeling.  This is the first step in overcoming this problem.  The next step is to affirm to yourself that you are going to be okay.  Tell yourself that you've dealt with this before, you know this feeling and you can identify it.  Often times just reminding yourself to take some slow deep breaths may stop the cycle of worry and anxiety.

If you are having further symptoms which may include excessive worrying, trouble falling asleep or staying asleep, problems working or concentrating, tiredness, headaches, muscle tension or nausea, you may want to seek help for this problem. 

The good news is that there is help available. If you are an eligible UAA student you may make an intake appointment with one of the Student Health and Counseling Center Mental Health Providers.  There are also other counseling options available on our website.

In addition to seeking counseling help, you may find some relief with stress management.  Meditation, physical activity, eating a balanced diet, avoiding caffeine, and getting enough sleep may all be helpful. 

You are now on the way to getting relief from your anxiety.  Congratulations.