AnxietyTop 4 types of Psychotherapies helpful for Anxiety Disorder

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Top 4 types of Psychotherapies helpful for Anxiety Disorder

Anxiety disorders are a group of mental health conditions that cause excessive worry and fear. It can significantly impact your life because they make it difficult for you to function in your daily life. Anxiety disorders are the most common mental disorder, affecting 40.4 million adults (around 19.1%) in the United States in any given year. The most common types of anxiety disorders include Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD), Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD), and Panic Disorder with Agoraphobia. With that stated, let’s now dig into the blog to understand what anxiety disorder is and the types of psychotherapies helpful for anxiety disorder. 

Anxiety & Therapy

Anxiety is an activation. The physiological response of anxiety is an activation of the nervous system. When one is very much activated out of the window of tolerance, their breathing becomes more shallow and one could find their thoughts racing. Pupils could become dilated and one could become sweaty, which leads to fatigue.  All these are the physiological response to anxiety which results due to the changes in the nervous system in that area. 


Therapy is a process in which a person can work with a therapist to change their thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. Therapy works by addressing the client’s thoughts and feelings about their situation. This is done through both verbal and non-verbal communication between therapist and client. When one thinks of getting therapy for anxiety disorder, addressing the overall physical responses would be helpful to get the best out of therapy. 

What is Anxiety Disorder?

Anxiety disorders are a group of mental health conditions that involve excessive fear and worry. It is characterized by persistent, extreme, and debilitating anxiety that disrupts everyday life. An individual with an anxiety disorder may have overwhelming feelings of fear or worry that cause distress and avoidance behaviors. They can lead to physical symptoms such as rapid heart rate, trembling, nausea, or dizziness. These can sometimes be so severe that it becomes difficult to carry out normal daily activities.

Why Do People Get Anxiety Disorders?

When people are anxious, they feel like they have to do everything perfectly or fail. This can lead to anxiety-related problems such as avoidance and perfectionism. It can also lead to physical symptoms such as headaches, chest pain, muscle tension, and fatigue. 

Anxiety disorders often develop during childhood or adolescence. The causes of anxiety disorders vary and may include genetic predisposition, environmental factors, a combination of both, and many more. 

What causes anxiety? The biopsychosocial model will give us a perspective on the root causes. In this model, there’s a biological, psychological, social, and emotional component, all of which contribute to an anxiety disorder developing. 

Types of Anxiety Disorders

Anxiety is a feeling of discomfort or worry that can be triggered by various things. It can also affect our behavior and physical responses. Anxiety is caused by many things, but it is often the result of an event that has already happened or something that may occur in the future. It can also be the result of stress and fear. There are different types of anxiety disorders; to list a few:

  • Generalized Anxiety Disorder – Generalized anxiety disorder is a debilitating condition that causes excessive worry and fear. The most common form is social anxiety which includes feelings of fear and worries about everyday situations that are primarily out of your control.
  • Separation Anxiety Disorder – One of the characteristics of this disorder is “developmental inappropriate and excessive fear or anxiety concerning separation from those to whom the individual is attached.” Children who experience this have difficulty leaving their parents. Children may be unwilling to sleep by themselves, play in another room, etc. The key is that it is outside normal functioning. The prevalence of this is about 4% for children from 6 months to 12 months.
  • Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder – Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder is defined as an illness involving obsessive thoughts and compulsive actions that are difficult to control. Obsessive-compulsive Disorder (OCD) is characterized by intrusive thoughts, repetitive behaviors, and a preoccupation with orderliness. These thoughts are often accompanied by a sense of dread and mental distress. The Disorder can be triggered by various factors such as stress, anxiety, or trauma.
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder – Post-traumatic stress disorder is a mental health condition caused by a traumatic event. It is characterized by distressing memories, flashbacks, and intrusive thoughts about the trauma. Post-traumatic stress disorder is one of the most common conditions among military veterans. It has also been found to affect many people who have experienced natural disasters or terrorist attacks or who have been victims of sexual assault or domestic violence.

Types of Psychotherapies

Psychotherapy is a mental health treatment that helps people with mental health issues. It is usually delivered by a professional, such as a psychologist, psychiatrist, or social worker.

The benefits of psychotherapy are many and varied. Psychotherapy helps people manage their emotions, cope with stress and anxiety, improve their relationships and communication skills, and recover from trauma. It also helps them develop the skills to prevent future problems from arising.

There are many types of psychotherapies available and the top 4 are as follows:

  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) 
  • Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP)
  • Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing (EMDR)
  • Narrative Therapy

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is a type of psychotherapy that focuses on how thoughts, feelings, and behaviors affect each other. CBT is the most common form of psychotherapy in the United States.

This therapy works by helping to identify and change maladaptive patterns in thinking, feeling, and behavior that is causing problems for people. CBT generally aims to help people better manage their emotions or thoughts to improve their quality of life.

Cognitive-behavioral therapy effectively treats many mental health problems, including depression, anxiety disorders, substance abuse disorders, and chronic pain syndrome.

Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP)

Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP) is a type of cognitive-behavioral therapy used to help people with anxiety disorders. This treatment method works by gradually exposing people to their fears while providing them with coping skills and support.

The therapist will work with the client to create a hierarchy of feared situations, starting with the least fearful one. The client will be gradually brought closer to their fears, typically in small steps. This process allows for gradual mastery over fear without having to face it head-on.

Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing (EMDR)

Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing (EMDR) is a type of psychotherapy that helps people who have been through traumatic experiences by processing and reprocessing the memories. EMDR was first developed in France in 1987 but has since become an international treatment for trauma. It has been used to treat people with PTSD, anxiety, depression, sexual assault survivors, and others.

EMDR is done by showing the person disturbing images. At the same time, they are given eye movements to help them process the memories. The process takes about an hour, and it can be done in a therapist’s office or at home with a therapist’s assistance.

Narrative Therapy 

Narrative therapy, sometimes called narrative-based treatment, is a type of psychotherapy that uses stories to understand and change problematic patterns of thinking and behaving. The concept was first introduced by psychologist Stephen Porges in the 1990s. He believed that human beings are hardwired to process emotions through stories. The therapist and client work together to create a story that they can use as a tool for self-understanding and change.

With this form of therapy, therapists work closely with clients to identify their experiences and then develop a narrative that explains how they have been impacted by these experiences. Narrative therapy is an evidence-based treatment that can be used with other forms of treatment, such as cognitive-behavioral or interpersonal therapies.

How the Yerkes Dodson Curve Can Help You Succeed at Anything You Put Your Mind to

The Yerkes-Dodson curve, or arousal-performance curve, is a theory in psychology that describes the relationship between arousal and performance. This theory was developed by psychologists Edward Bradford Yerkes and John Dillingham Dodson. It states that when an individual is faced with a task they are not familiar with, they will be motivated to perform well if they have low anxiety levels. Still, as their anxiety increases, they will become less motivated to perform well.

The Yerkes-Dodson curve shows how people’s performance can go up or down depending on the level of challenge they face. The curve can help you succeed at anything you put your mind to, but it doesn’t mean you will be good at everything. The key is to find what your strengths are and work on them. Yerkes Dodson’s theory suggests two different kinds of tasks – those that require more effort or concentration and those that require less effort or attention. When we do tasks that don’t need much effort or concentration, our performance will improve until a certain point and then start to decline for the rest of the task.


Concluding…

The benefits of therapy for mental health are wide and varied. It can help with several different mental health issues, such as depression, anxiety disorders, and more. Many therapies are available, starting from ERP, CBT, to EMDR. And then some other helpful therapies are narrative therapy, attachment-based therapy, etc. Basically, there are a lot of modalities that are really helpful for anxiety, not one size fits all. Psychotherapies have proven to effectively treat anxiety-related problems and reduce symptoms of anxiety disorders over time. It really depends on the client’s presentation and what they’re coming in for, and the best fit for the therapist in that client. It’s not a one-size-fits-all. The relationship between the therapist and the client is the number one predictor of any good outcomes for anyone, no matter what they’re coming for. In conclusion, therapy (psychotherapy) for mental health is a very effective way to heal from anxiety disorders and improve overall well-being. It can help people feel better about themselves and live a more fulfilling life.

Are you figuring out how to deal with your anxiety? Reach out to us. Let’s work it out together. 

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