Psychology & Psychiatry

Evaluating treatment for teen anxiety

Anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the U.S., with approximately 4.4 million children and adolescents affected, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Psychology & Psychiatry

Is psychiatry shrinking what's considered normal?

Psychiatric classifications catalog the many forms of mental ill-health. They define what counts as a disorder and who counts as disordered, drawing the boundary between psychological normality and abnormality.

Psychology & Psychiatry

What anxiety does to our breathing

Stressful situations can cause anxiety, our body's natural response to stress. But feelings of apprehension can also be accompanied by physical effects such as rapid breathing, increased heart rate and nausea. How our brain ...

Psychology & Psychiatry

WPSI advises screening for anxiety in women, teen girls

(HealthDay)—Screening for anxiety is recommended for women and adolescent girls, according to a review and clinical guideline published online June 9 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Anxiety disorder is a blanket term covering several different forms of a type of mental illness of abnormal and pathological fear and anxiety. Conditions now considered anxiety disorders only came under the aegis of psychiatry at the end of the 19th century. Gelder, Mayou & Geddes (2005) explains that anxiety disorders are classified in two groups: continuous symptoms and episodic symptoms. Current psychiatric diagnostic criteria recognize a wide variety of anxiety disorders. Recent surveys have found that as many as 18% of Americans may be affected by one or more of them.

The term anxiety covers four aspects of experiences an individual may have: mental apprehension, physical tension, physical symptoms and dissociative anxiety. Anxiety disorder is divided into generalized anxiety disorder, phobic disorder, and panic disorder; each has its own characteristics and symptoms and they require different treatment (Gelder et al. 2005). The emotions present in anxiety disorders range from simple nervousness to bouts of terror (Barker 2003).

Standardized screening clinical questionnaires such as the Taylor Manifest Anxiety Scale or the Zung Self-Rating Anxiety Scale can be used to detect anxiety symptoms, and suggest the need for a formal diagnostic assessment of anxiety disorder.

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