Treatment for Anxiety
I specialize in the treatment of these specific types of anxiety – Generalized Anxiety, Social Anxiety, Specific Phobia, Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder, Panic Attacks, and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder. Click on the specific links to each one to find out more, or read about “My Approach” to get a better understanding of my philosophy of therapy. Treatment for anxiety will usually involve the following:
- Face your anxiety in a supportive environment
- Figure out what behaviors you can do more of to get the life you want
- Learn how to handle unhelpful thoughts
Why do we feel anxious?
Plenty of things exist in the world to make us feel anxious. In fact, anxiety is a natural, evolutionary response to situations that either appear or are dangerous. However, this same system that keeps us safe can sometimes become activated in situations where it is neither necessary nor helpful, triggering an anxiety response that can be quite unpleasant. This response often leads to other responses by the individual, usually to escape from the perceived danger.
Furthermore, because we as humans are fast learners, over time we learn to avoid those situations and cues that may be dangerous before we even get there. Now this would be fine if our anxiety response only went off in situations of actual danger, such as the edge of a cliff, or a room full of lions. Unfortunately, our minds are wired such that anxiety often rears its ugly head in less threatening situations. When engaging in therapy for anxiety, you can learn new ways to respond to and cope with these situations that cause anxiety.
Watch a quick video about the treatment of anxiety.
Why doesn’t the anxiety go away?
What exactly cues anxiety in an individual can vary from person to person, and this is what gives rise to the different anxiety disorders. However, anxiety is generally maintained in the same functional way. That is, when something makes us anxious, we try to escape and/or avoid it in the first place. When this happens, this strengthens the association in our mind of that situation with anxiety. When these situations that cue anxiety are important to us and our avoidance and escape behavior gets in the way of living the lives we want, now we have a problem.
The solution in therapy, then, is to approach rather than avoid the anxiety-provoking situation, and stay present to all of the anxiety cues in your mind, body, and surroundings, until your mind can experientially learn that there is no real danger, and that you are ok. This treatment for anxiety will seem nerve racking at first; however, the MORE you do it, the EASIER it gets! Read more about how this works in “My Approach” and call or email today for a free consultation!