Nearly one in every five Americans experiences some form of anxiety disorder. Though that’s millions of people, many myths and misconceptions still surround anxiety. Here’s just a few that we know aren’t true.
Myth: Anxiety isn’t a real illness.
Everyone has anxious thoughts, but an anxiety disorder means these thoughts can impair a person’s day-to-day life.
Those experiencing anxiety don’t just worry about the big stuff. They can feel extreme fear or panic over situations their mind deems a threat, even if they seem small or insignificant to us. Dismissing their struggle as being a worrywort can deny them the help they need to cope with their disorder.
Myth: Medication is the only treatment for anxiety disorders.
Medication can be an effective treatment for those suffering from anxiety, but it’s not the only path toward healing. Research shows that cognitive behavioral therapy may be just as or more effective than medication, especially in the long run.
Regardless of someone’s personalized treatment plan, it’s important to avoid judgment and understand they’re on their own path toward a happier, healthier life.
Myth: People with anxiety disorders are fragile.
Life is full of stressful, unexpected situations. For people with anxiety disorders, coping in these moments looks no different than everyone else. An anxiety disorder doesn’t mean a person can’t handle stress or must be handled with extra care. It simply means they have to be aware of triggers and have tools ready to handle whatever life throws their way. If you or someone you love needs help finding healthy coping mechanisms or is looking for more intensive treatment, reach out to the experts at Valley Oaks Health.