Although anxiety is your body’s natural response to stress, it can get out of hand. Generally, it is a feeling of fear and apprehension about what is about to happen. It is a normal emotion, but when you constantly feel disproportionate anxiety levels, it becomes a mental health concern. An anxiety disorder is a mental issue that manifests as excessive nervousness, fear, and worry, seriously impacting day-to-day living.
Everyone experiences anxiety differently, making it hard to point out the exact cause of anxiety. However, experts suggest that a combination of factors often causes it. Let’s discuss some common causes of anxiety problems.
Past or childhood trauma
Tough experiences in childhood, teen years, or even adulthood are known to trigger anxiety problems. According to mental health experts, going through trauma and stress when you are young has a huge impact. For instance, having parents who mistreat you or are overprotective can trigger anxiety. Some of the experiences likely to trigger anxiety include;
- Physical abuse.
- Emotional abuse.
- Being socially excluded or bullied.
- Losing a parent.
- Sexual assault.
Your current life circumstance
Current circumstances in your life can trigger anxiety. Anxiety may develop because of one or more stressful events in life. Some instances are:
- Accumulation of stress.
- Work stress such as a change of job.
- Long working hours.
- Being out of work.
- Pregnancy and giving birth.
- Lots of changes and uncertainty.
- Major emotional shock due to a life-changing event or a stressful and traumatic event.
- Loss of a loved one.
- Family and relationship problems.
- Money problems.
- Change in living arrangement.
- Being abused, bullied, or harassed.
- Feeling lonely or isolated.
It is good to seek help from a mental and behavioral health provider in such cases.
A family history of mental health conditions
Another factor that can make you susceptible to anxiety problems is having a family history of mental health conditions. Some individuals are genetically predisposed to anxiety, and the disorder could sometimes run in the family. But that doesn’t mean that having a parent or sibling with anxiety disorder automatically means you will develop anxiety. Having a family history of anxiety disorder only makes you have a higher risk than an individual with no family history of anxiety.
Physical health issues
Some physical health problems can contribute to anxiety. For instance, a chronic illness can trigger anxiety, or anxiety can impact the treatment of the physical illness. Some of the physical health problems linked to anxiety include asthma, heart disease, diabetes, and chronic pain. Some conditions such as overactive thyroid can mimic anxiety conditions. It is best to see a doctor to determine if you have a physical condition that triggers your anxiety.
Substance and alcohol use
Some people use alcohol and abuse substances to deal with anxiety. In such cases, that leads to the development of a substance use problem along with the anxiety condition. Alcohol and drugs can increase anxiety, especially as the effects wear off. It is important to seek medical help for substance use conditions as it could trigger more anxiety.
You can always identify the underlying cause of anxiety through professional help from a mental health provider.
Infographic provided by Scottsdale Mental Health and Wellness, an Arizona online psychiatrist