Symptoms of Anxiety

Symptoms of anxiety include both psychological (emotional) and physiological (physical) symptoms. The main symptom of anxiety is feeling anxious, nervous, and the feeling that something bad is going to happen to you or to your loved ones. In addition, anxiety will often cause insomnia and sleeping difficulties, fatigue, irritability, and the feeling that you do not have control over your emotions. Physical symptoms of anxiety include a rapid heartbeat, shortness of breath, dizziness, nausea and diarrhoea, chest pain, tremor, sweating, and a need to go to the toilet often.

If you have these symptoms, it is likely that you are exhibiting anxiety. If these symptoms manifest for just a short period of time, than your anxiety is not very problematic. However, chronic anxiety can be debilitating and you should seek professional help if it has been ongoing. Symptoms of chronic anxiety include long-term gastrointestinal issues, such as ulcers and Irritable Bowel Syndrome; trouble falling asleep or waking up after just a few hours of sleep; frequent outbursts of anger while driving (road rage); thinking a lot about potential world problems that are outside your control (such as terrorist attacks or a new pandemic); obsessing about the future and problems which may crop up; fear of flying because of the worry that something might happen; being very conscious of what others think about you, and modifying your behaviour to please others instead of doing what you like; and thinking a lot about death.

Chronic anxiety is a serious issue that needs to be dealt with. You should consult a health professional to help you deal with it, but there are also some things you can do to help yourself. One of the most important things is learning to look at problems objectively and putting them into perspective, as people tend to perceive problems to be much bigger than they actually are. Realise when you are thinking about worse-case scenarios, and keep in mind that there are many other scenarios which may happen instead.
Future problems may never manifest, and it is important to learn to live more in the now and stop obsessing about what might have been or what might be. It is also important that when you identify a real problem, you look for ways of tackling it and not run away from it. Else you will keep worrying about it.