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November 3, 2011 at 12:15 PMComments: 0 Faves: 0

Grouping Anxiety Disorders

By Dr. Jeff Chamberlain, MD More Blogs by This Author

Dr. Jeff Chamberlain talks about how each of the five separate anxiety disorders can lead to one another in a single person.

Gerry Barnaby (host)-  Hey, what's up, Barnaby here with another HelloLife moment, one that you have a real question about, at least someone in the hellolife.net Network. You've taken the time to write in to seek the counsel of Dr. Jeffrey Chamberlain, who is a family medicine specialist. We're talking about anxiety disorders and we've determined in previous segments that there are five of them. Can you rattle those off for us?
Dr. Jeffrey Chamberlain-  So, there's general anxiety disorders, obsessive compulsive disorder, panic attacks, social phobias and then post traumatic stress disorder.
B- Okay, now, it's interesting that you would have any one of those, certainly a hill to climb to get back to a good baseline. But, is it possible to suffer from more than one?
C- That's a good question. A lot of people do suffer from more than one, having one actually increases your risk of having another. If someone has had a traumatic event in their life and has post traumatic stress disorder, it's more likely to have panic attacks also, it's also more likely to have general anxiety disorder. People with obsessive compulsive disorder are more likely to have general anxiety disorder also. So, they can be blended together and sometimes it's hard to delineate what's one thing and what's another and what's a combination of both.
B- Would there be a different treatment for each of them?
C- There are different treatments and treatment strategies for them. With therapy, a lot of times, therapists they'll look at what's the general cause of what's going on and come up with an individualized strategy for that. Some of the medications have been shown to work for certain things better than others, so medication wise you might use different medications depending on what the cause of your anxiety is.
B- Quickly, as we touched on in another segment here on hellolife.net. You're invited to just, kind of, peruse the inventory of the social and otherwise triggered anxieties we've been talking about. A lot of these anxieties are self-inflicted.
C- Yea, there's things that we do that feeds into our anxieties and makes them worse. So, by changing our lifestyle, changing what we do, can definitely help with our anxieties. It's not necessarily a cure all or going to just make everything go away, but it makes it a lot easier to manage your anxiety and living in a healthy way really makes a difference.
B- Quick question, and that is: Can you suffer from all five at once or is it kind of a building block; where you say are obsessive compulsive and then you go on to social anxiety and then you go on, or can it all just come cascading down at once?
C- A lot of times there could be someone, let's say, someone has some obsessive compulsive tendencies and some anxiety issues and then a traumatic event happened and now they have post traumatic stress disorder and it just makes it easier to build on each other. They wouldn't all just instantly show up at once in someone, but there could be things that are building on each other, where they can be suffering from all of them.
B- The important thing is to be self-aware, because it is your life, your body and you have to keep track of the way things are going and be brave enough to step forward and say, "I need help." So, start with your primary care physician?
C- It's a good place to start, they can help you find resources, where to go and things that can help. Sometimes if medications are needed, they can help out wit that also.
B- You know what? This is also a great first step for you isn't it? Getting the background information so you can be more self-aware through yourself and your loved ones. It is a Smart Living Network you're checking into right here at hellolife.net.

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