It is important to know that if you’re experiencing symptoms of anxiety disorders, you can get treatment through therapy. These symptoms may include racing thoughts, sleepless nights, unrelenting worries, or panic attacks. You can also suffer physical symptoms such as sweating and trembling.
Anxiety therapy is the most effective treatment for your anxiety disorder. Also, with the help of a highly trained and experienced family therapist, you’ll uncover the underlying issues that are causing fears and worries. You are not going to treat anxiety alone in your therapy sessions, you will also learn relaxation techniques, do away with your anxious feelings when you look at your situation, as well as develop strong coping skills.
There are different treatment options for specific symptoms of anxiety disorders. For instance, if you’ve panic attacks, you will receive a different type of treatment from an individual with OCD or obsessive-compulsive disorder. Most therapies are short, however, the length of treatment depends on the severity of your anxiety disorder.
Different Types Of Therapies For Treating Anxiety Disorder
Different types of therapy are used to treat anxiety disorders, they include:
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
CBT is the most commonly used therapy for treating anxiety disorders. The concept of Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy is that our thoughts are the cause of how we think, feel, and behave. In other terms, it is your perception of the situation that affects how you feel and not the situation. CBT aims to address negative thoughts on how we view the world and ourselves. There are two components of Cognitive-behavioral treatment which include:
Examines how your negative thoughts cause the feeling of your anxiety.
Examines how your behavior and reaction contribute to the feeling of your anxiety.
Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy seeks to identify negative feelings, beliefs, and thoughts, challenge them, and substitute them with constructive and healthier feelings, beliefs, and thoughts. CBT is effective in treating different mental health issues or types of anxiety disorders including:
- Separation Anxiety Disorder
- Generalized Anxiety Disorder (characterized by extreme or chronic anxiety)
- Specific phobias
- Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
- Panic disorder
- Social anxiety disorder (social phobia)
Also, CBT is effective in treating co-occurring as well as related disorders including disorders that affect moods such as bipolar disorder and major depression. CBT is also effective for clients who wish to deal with stress management.
Just like its name, this form of therapy for anxiety treatment exposes clients to the situations and objects that they fear. By exposing you frequently, you will feel an improved sense of control rather than fear and your worries will be manageable as you progress over time.
There are two ways that exposure therapy can be done. You may be asked by your therapist to imagine worrying situations, or regularly confront situations that you fear in your life. A family therapist can decide to use exposure therapy alone or combine the treatment with CBT (cognitive-behavioral therapy).
Interpersonal Therapy (IPT)
Interpersonal therapy or IPT seeks to address interpersonal issues in adults and adolescents. During your therapy sessions, your therapist may gather information about the nature of your interpersonal experiences and mental health concerns. The main objective will be to identify negative patterns such as avoidance, aggression, and social isolation. IPT works to understand your mental health and encourage positive social relations and interactions with others.
This form of therapy involves identifying negative patterns of your thinking and behavior as a result of past experiences. In psychodynamic orientation, your therapist will allow you to discuss anything from your mind using free association and open-ended questions.
Also, in your therapy sessions, you will work together with your therapist to identify unconscious patterns in your behavior. When understanding negative patterns, you will learn to overcome and avoid them. Psychodynamic therapy is useful in treating borderline personality disorder, anxiety disorders, and depression.
Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)
DBT basic concepts are heavily borrowed from Cognitive behavioral therapy. However, DBT focuses on the personal acceptance of uncomfortable feelings, thoughts, and behavior instead of dealing with them as you struggle. By knowing your negative thoughts, you will be able to work with your therapist and create a gradual and effective plan for your anxiety treatment.
DBT will enable you to learn cognitive and emotional skills as well as apply them in your life. DBT will generally focus on dealing with difficult emotions such as nervousness and fear. DBT is effective in assisting people with anxiety disorders to control and regulate their emotions.
Complimentary Therapies For Anxiety Disorders
It is recommendable that you experiment with other effective strategies to assist you in managing stress levels and making your mental health better. Some of the complimentary therapies that help treat anxiety include:
Just like your mental health, it is equally important to take good care of your physical health. According to studies confirmed by the Anxiety & Depression Association of America (ADAA), exercise can relieve symptoms of anxiety disorders. Setting aside one hour three to five days a week for aerobic exercise can greatly improve your mental health.
Mindfulness And Relaxation Technique
Other great therapy that can improve your mental health and help minimize anxiety is progressive muscle relaxation, mindfulness meditation, and yoga.
Healthy Lifestyle Changes
Living a healthy lifestyle such as avoiding stress, getting enough sleep, eating a balanced diet, and exercising can greatly help to reduce anxiety.
Support groups can help reduce anxiety and is also an effective treatment plan. Support groups can help adults, older adults, and adolescents connect with people in similar circumstances, fight social anxiety, and feel less lonely. According to National Alliance on Mental Illness, support groups are effective in dealing with posttraumatic stress disorder.
How Is Anxiety Therapy Different From Anxiety Medication?
Anxiety medication is the use of drugs such as antidepressants to help in the treatment of anxiety. The main difference is that anxiety medication does not get to the root cause of your anxiety’s underlying problems: it’s only anxiety therapy that will give you long-lasting solutions.
Effective Anxiety Counseling By A Professional Family Therapist In San Diego, CA
Jan Rakoff, LCSW, is a professional therapist with a wide of experience in anxiety treatment in San Diego, CA. She is a licensed therapist and I also provide other types of therapies such as couple, relationship, and marriage therapy.
She has helped many people overcome anxiety using different types of therapies including cognitive behavioral therapy, psychodynamic therapy, mindfulness-based therapy, and others. Contact me and let us collaborate to give you the help you need to treat your anxiety issues.