Fleeting nervousness is something that everyone experiences before speaking in public or a job interview, but anxiety is described as intense feelings that are constant. Anxiety disorders last at least six months, and there are many different types, such as panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, social phobia, specific phobias, and generalized anxiety disorder. Read on to know more about obsessive anxiety disorder in middle-aged women.
About Obsessive Anxiety Disorder
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) affects around 2.2 million American adults and typically develops during childhood, adolescence, or early adulthood. OCD is characterized by having persistent, upsetting thoughts and using rituals to control the anxiety that arises from such thoughts. Most of the time, the rituals end up controlling them. Rituals often involve counting, such as having to wash your hair three times instead of one. These rituals only provide temporary relief, and people with OCD often feel ashamed of them.
Some typical obsessions that people with OCD experience include:
- Having recurrent thoughts of violence and harming loved ones
- Persistently thinking about sexual acts the person dislikes
- Having thoughts that are prohibited by religious beliefs
- Constantly touching, checking, and counting things
- Hoarding, linked to an obsession with symmetry and order
The average healthy person has some rituals, like checking to make sure they locked the door or turned off the stove, the difference with people with OCD is that their rituals interfere with daily life, and they feel distressed by the repetition.
OCD symptoms can worsen if left untreated, so it is important to seek professional help if you think you are suffering from OCD. Doctors have found that people with OCD usually respond well to treatments, like medication or psychotherapy, and sometimes a combination of both.
Natural approaches to treating OCD - which should be in addition to professional treatment - include getting regular exercise, eating healthy, and trying herbal remedies. Exercising is a great outlet for stress and restlessness. Yoga, walking, and cycling are all low-impact forms of exercise that are beneficial for easing anxiety symptoms.
Maintaining a healthy diet not only helps you look your best, but it can also increase energy, improve mood, and ease stress and anxiety. Try to include plenty of protein, fruits and vegetables, fatty acids, and complex carbohydrates into your daily diet. Herbs with sedative characteristics - like kava, hops, valerian, and passion flower - can be useful in treating anxiety symptoms as well. Read complete information on approaches for treating anxiety during menopause.
- National Institutes of Mental Health. (2012). Anxiety disorders. Retrieved September 26, 2014, from http://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/publications/anxiety-disorders/index.shtml
- Office on Women's Health. (2012). Anxiety Disorders Fact Sheet. Retrieved September 26, 2014, from http://www.womenshealth.gov/publications/our-publications/fact-sheet/anxiety-disorders.html