|Everyone experiences anxiety and worry to some extent. Extreme and persistent anxiety, however, can be a symptom of an anxiety disorder. According to the Anxiety Disorders Association of Canada, anxiety disorders are the most common form of mental illness, and one in four adults will experience one in their lifetime. There are many different forms of anxiety disorders including phobias, panic disorder, agoraphobia (fear of open or public spaces), social anxiety, generalized anxiety, obsessive compulsive disorder, as well as post-traumatic stress disorder.
It is important to note that anxiety disorders are treatable. Options included accessing your family doctor, who may diagnose an anxiety disorder, provide medications, or refer you to a specialist. Frequently, people choose to speak to a counsellor to obtain support and learn skills to help. Counselling can reduce anxiety in many ways. For example, counsellors can help you to identify and challenge irrational beliefs (such as the need for everything to be “perfect”), identify triggers, and teach relaxation strategies, including mindfulness skills. Mindfulness is particularly effective in treating anxiety, and Borealis Counselling Services have counsellors who are trained in mindfulness. You may wish to join our mindfulness group for support in managing your anxiety.
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