Anxiety can affect people in many different ways — you may feel frightened, uneasy, unhappy and sometimes even desperate.
You are likely to feel anxiety in your body, and it will affect your thoughts, emotions and daily activities.
- Breathing difficulties
- Tense jaw
- Feeling faint/dizzy
- Excess sweating
- Bowel and urinary problems
- ‘Lumps’ in the throat
- Persistent tiredness
- Dry mouth
- Pounding heart
Thinking and feeling
Thinking is likely to be negative and unreasonable, such as “I can’t cope,” “There is something wrong with me,” “I’m out of control,” or “It’s always like this for me.” Constant negative thinking makes it hard to concentrate, to sleep well and to focus on activities.
You may find it difficult to read, watch a movie or simply relax and be still. Feelings are likely to follow on from this thinking, causing constant worry so that people feel scared, irritable, panicky and often guilty. Fearful thinking and feeling can quickly escalate into panic attacks that leave people feeling vulnerable and scared.
Anxiety may cause you to fear things, people or situations. You may find it hard to:
- Go outside of your home
- Meet people
- Travel on public transport
- Manage health issues (aches and pains)
- Interact with others and ask for what you want
What you can do:
Recognise that anxiety is normal. Without it we would not be alert or recognise danger. If you are experiencing high levels of anxiety, you can learn how to manage it.
Here’s how: you can learn about anxiety and how it happens for you, identify the things you are doing that keep the anxiety going, and learn coping skills to bring the anxiety down.