Health

Signs You May Have an Anxiety Disorder

Anxiety and stress are the same thing.

Anxiety is an emotion — you feel nervous or scared. Stress is a physical response to something you feel threatened by — your heart beats faster, your breath comes quicker, and your muscles tense. It’s your body’s way of making you alert and prepared for action. Anxiety can be triggered by stress.

Anxiety can be a good thing.

It may not be enjoyable, but it’s a normal emotion. And it can help you focus when you face a challenge or threat.

You may need to talk with your doctor if anxiety makes you:

A loss of appetite or sleep every once in a while because of anxiety is normal for most people. But people who have extreme fear and worry that won’t go away or interfere with their jobs or relationships may have an anxiety disorder. Some examples are generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder, and social anxiety disorder.

What percentage of American adults are affected by an anxiety disorder each year?

Anxiety disorders are the most common type of mental illness in the U.S.

You may be more likely to have an anxiety disorder if you:

You’re also at greater risk if you have money problems or have dealt with stressful life events.

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