Could I have an anxiety disorder because I have these very anxious periods?
Over the past month or 2 I have experienced a couple of periods where I feel very anxious. I get a racing heart rate, and I can't eat my dinner fully—sometimes I may leave a few pieces there uneaten because I feel full and can't eat any more. I get a bit tired too.
These anxious periods have lasted from between a few hours to a full day or a day and a half. I fear that certain things may happen to me during these anxious periods.
After these anxious periods, I tend to see my fears and worries from a different perspective and I stop worrying about them. (I sometimes think to myself "Why was I worrying so much?") A lot of the time other than this I feel fine and anxious-free.
This story leads me to a question. Could I potentially have an anxiety disorder of some sort because I have these very anxious periods?
Hi mate. Good to hear from you.
There is a lot for us to worry about these days. Many of us feel anxious or scared at some point in our lives. Sometimes our feelings of anxiety can even be good for us because they can help us clear our minds and help us to see things differently.
When we are scared or anxious, our bodies produce adrenaline and other stress hormones. This wires us up by moving blood around (such as from our stomach to our heart) to increase our heart rate, make us breathe faster, sweat, tremble, and generally prepare us to run somewhere safe or stand our ground to fight.
Such high levels of adrenaline and stress tend however to come at a cost. They make us tired and we become less able to cope with everyday difficulties.
As to whether you could potentially have an anxiety disorder of some sort, you will need a health professional to diagnose you—someone like a doctor or psychologist. They will need to ask you some more questions to do this.
Maybe start by talking to someone you trust about your experiences. Your parents? Your school counsellor? A sibling? A teacher? Or if you prefer to be anonymous, you could call a helpline (see below for numbers). The people answering these calls are trained to deal with many issues and you can talk as much or as little as you want.
Anxiety disorders are usually very treatable and can often be treated in relatively short amounts of time. There is also much you can do for yourself. For more information about anxiety and the various forms of anxiety disorders, please see the links below.
Hope this has helped. You take care of yourself