Anxiety Symptoms and Signs | Integrated Counseling and Wellness
Change: Finding Our True Motivation
June 26, 2019

Anxiety is a topic that is often heard about but is rarely discussed. Stress and worry are a part of everyday life, no matter what circumstances you are in but sometimes the feelings and symptoms associated with these stresses are more intense for some people than for others. Anxiety is defined by feelings of apprehension, worry or fear. These emotions are okay to feel and are associated with day to day stresses such as taking a test or performing in a play, but anxiety is often much more extreme than these everyday fears. Anxiety is not always a logical or real-based fear. Often times anxiety symptoms occur when someone pictures the worst possible outcomes or is fixated on a certain fear or event. 

Anxiety Attack Symptoms 

An anxiety attack is often much more intense than just the regular symptoms that come with anxiety. Anxiety attacks are sometimes caused by an event but can also come out when an individual has been under extreme amounts of stress for long periods of time. Symptoms for panic attacks are much more invasive and can take a while to come down from. Some anxiety symptoms can include difficulty breathing, inability to focus or hold a conversation, increased heart rate, nervous ticks or itches, sweating, chest pains or even a feeling of detachment from the world.    

The Difference Between Depression and Anxiety

Though anxiety symptoms can often lead to depression, and vice versa, there is a big difference in the two conditions. Depression is an illness that can affect an individual’s mental and physical productivity and can be very serious if not treated quickly and correctly. Depression can affect people’s day to day motivation to complete even the most simple activities. People with very severe depression have difficulty going to school or even maintaining a job. This differs quite greatly from anxiety. Though some people may have extreme anxiety symptoms, they may have a very positive outlook on life and themselves, whereas someone who suffers from depression would not. Though they are not the same thing, they are closely related and often times occur together. 

Signs of Depression

Symptoms of depression can include feelings of hopelessness and despair that won’t go away. They also include a lack of interest in things that the individual previously enjoyed or was passionate about. Change in weight and appetite is another prominent symptom. People enduring depression can have trouble getting out of bed and leaving the house which can result in extreme weight gain or weight loss. Substance abuse, increased spending, and other reckless behavior can also stem from depression. Feelings of self-hate and loathing are also very prominent emotions for people who have this mental illness and it is not rare for these people to talk about their negative self-perception. Depression symptoms can vary from person to person, so if you notice an extreme change in someone’s behavior it is important that you address it. 

Finding ways to cope with these illnesses can be intimidating and oftentimes seem hopeless, but it is very important to remember that you are not alone. Seeking help from friends, family members, and counselors is very crucial and can have a big effect on how you deal with your mental health. Keep in mind that even though the road is long, overcoming these illnesses is possible and there are people there to help you every step of the way.  

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