Types of ​anxiety disorders

Most people with anxiety symptoms may be dealing with more than one type of anxiety, including depression. If you feel like any of these anxiety disorders apply to you then need to visit a mental health professional.

Different types of anxiety disorders

Panic disorder

Panic disorder is when panic attacks are recurrent, and your behavior and habits change as a result of the occurring panic attacks. If you have a panic disorder, you will be constantly worried about having another panic attack. You are mostly like to take several actions like getting a medical checkup months after the attack happened. People suffering from panic disorder also change their behavior because of the panic attack.

Specific phobias

We all fear certain objects, experiences, and animals. Learning to deal with it is a part of growing up. But some of us have an irrational fear of certain objects and animals, our fears are completely disproportionate to the danger these stimuli presented. Sometimes, the mere presence of these phobias, for example, on TV will trigger excessive alarm and fear. It is difficult to control these fears, even when we are aware of them because we feel like they are uncontrollable. These excessive reactions are known as specific phobias. They are often accompanied by panic attacks where people suffer from hot and cold flushes, dizziness, choking, fainting, nausea and chest pain.

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

When someone goes through a traumatic event that endangers their life or that of others, they suffer from PTSD. These incidents are traumatising because people feel helpless, horrified and scared. Examples of dangerous, life threatening incidents include car accidents, bushfires and war.

The symptoms of PTSD are varied, people will relive the event and experience the fear, horror and helplessness at the time. Reliving the event causes the person to be on the lookout for danger, thus struggling to concentrate, struggle to sleep and become irritable. Since the memories are so painful, they are likely to avoid places, people, thoughts or feelings associated with the event. The constant struggle with past events sees them lose interest in day-to-day activities, feels emotionally cut off from friends and family, and as a result, feel numb.

Generalised anxiety disorder (GAD) 

There are moments when we feel anxious like during a competitive game or when we are doing an exam which makes us more alert and work faster than we normally can.

GAD is a type of anxiety where people feel anxious and worried most of the time and not just when circumstances are stressful. The cause for concern can be anything related to their work, personal and social life, even seemingly normal activities like household chores cause stress and worry. The constant worrying and stressing is persistent and interferes in normal lives.

Who will deal with GAD and why?

Nearly 6 per cent of the population will deal with GAD in their lifetime. It can strike strike anyone at any age, including children though it commonly starts at around 30 years of age. Children experience GAD due to pressure to perform at school, sports, punctuality, even war and natural disasters.

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

Anxious thoughts influence behavior. Under normal circumstances, its a positive because we are more cautious in the right situations. But with obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), these anxious thoughts persist, they continue to recur which prompts an unhealthy behavioral pattern.

Some of us can feel ashamed of our compulsions and chose to hide it rather than talk about it. Its harmful because it only delays seeking treatment. OCD can hurt in other ways, for example, children with OCD may not want to go to school due to shame about their compulsions which means falling behind peers in education.

3 percent of the population in Australia experience some sort of OCD in their lifetimes. All of us can experience OCD at any time of our lives even children as young as 6 and 7.

OCD has environmental and biological causes. Experts have made a connection between neurochemicals and abnormal levels of serotonin (the chemical responsible for transferring messages between the brain.

Causes of anxiety

Learn the causes of anxiety

Signs and symptoms of anxiety

Learn how anxiety affects life and work

Managing anxiety

Anxiety is manageable. Learn how.

Treatment and support for anxiety

Need help? Reach out. Help is always available

Treatment and support for anxiety

Need help? Reach out. Help is always available

Related articles

The relationship between exercise and mental health
Research on the relationship between exercise and mental health has abounded in recent years, cementing the importance of physical activity[...]
Supporting autistic children with mental illnesses
Supporting autistic children is a concern for many parents, teachers, caregivers and loved ones, especially when it comes to children[...]
Tips On Coping With Social Anxiety
Coping with social anxiety is a common area of concern for thousands of people - especially the younger population -[...]
Telehealth In Rural Communities
Despite the ubiquity of mental healthcare and other psychosocial support services in urban areas, those residing in rural areas often[...]
Bringing Mental Health Services To Schools In Australia
In Australia, there’s a growing buzz around the provision of mental health services in schools. While having a counsellor on[...]
Identifying Mental Health Problems In Loved Ones: What Actions Can I Take?
Broaching the subject of mental health is never easy, even if you’ve been identifying mental health problems in loved ones.[...]

We're here to help

Fill out the form and a member of our team will reach out to you.

Medicare and NDIS rebates for onPsych psychology services

If you're referred by a GP, you're entitled to 10 free individual and group consultations respectively - under Medicare.

Stay in touch with us

Sign up and gain access to regular emails filled with information, advice and support for you and/or your loved ones.