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Understanding Anxiety Disorders

What is anxiety? And what can you do about it?

Anxiety can be thought of as the anticipation of a feared event that will occur at some point in time in the future.But, why even have these experiences? Well, for most people, these experiences are the very things that keep them alive. You swerve when a car cuts you off in traffic, and you run out of the way when it comes barreling down at you while you cross the street. Those panic responses saved your life.

But, what if these types of responses happened when they did not need to happen? What if, out of the blue, you were feeling as if something horrible was happening to you, but you could not identify what it was? What if, for some reason, you started to associate this panic or anxiety with things that most people would not be afraid of, such as a door handle or a bump in the road or a change in blood pressure. These experiences may be the result of an anxiety disorder, making you very uncomfortable throughout part of most of the day.So, how do you over come these fears?

Well, you have to face them. The saying, “If you fall off a horse, you have to just get right back on it,” is really true, because if you do not get back on the horse, you teach yourself that the horse is dangerous and that you need to stay off of it to be safe. And, while not riding a horse might not interfere with your life, avoiding work, school, family functions, tall buildings, “dirty” places, or driving might have major impacts on your life.Therefore, it is time to consider what you want for your future – will you stay afraid and continue to avoid what you fear and seek a lot of reassurance from everyone that you know that everything will be fine, even though you do not really believe anyone when they tell you that? Or, will you face your fears and learn that you can handle what it is that you are afraid of?

Our therapists at ACI can help you to face those fears. We do this in a very gradual way – baby steps, if you will. Our individualized treatment will assist you in taking steps to achieve your goal in order to be anxiety-free.If you look at the research literature, there are two therapies that are recommended for anxiety disorders – Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Exposure and Response Prevention. We specialize in both, and we only treat anxiety disorders. While other therapists may tell you that they specialize in 20 different things, we are limited to one area – anxiety.

So, if you want expert help from a well trained staff, then Anxiety Centers of Illinois is your first stop for all of your anxiety therapy needs. We look forward to working with you, and teaching you that you need not live in fear any longer.