The Deep Connection of Anxiety and Addiction

The topic of anxiety has become bigger and more popular in recent years, now more than ever. People are beginning to more widely identify the symptoms of anxiety disorders, as well as acknowledge how it damages and endangers people. Struggling with anxiety can impose on a person’s job, their social connections, or even their daily life and personal schedule.

When you struggle with anxiety—with racing thoughts and worries that will not slow down or stop—you seek for ways to numb your mind or calm down, and to many people who face anxiety, that solution is alcohol or another type of drug. But this is also an easy way to fall under an addiction. How can you identify if you have an anxiety disorder, or if it puts you at risk for addiction? There are a number of aspects to consider.

Searching for the Signs

It is normal for anyone to feel emotions of anxiety, worry, and fear. They are simply a few of the many emotions humans experience. However, much like with anything else, this should only be in moderation. What distinguishes the average feelings of anxiety and anxiety disorders is how often and how intense a person’s apprehension is.

An individual with an anxiety disorder may often deal with panic attacks in times of stress, symptoms of which include dizziness, headaches, muscle tension, rapid heart rate, shortness of breath, insomnia, irrational fears, trouble concentrating, fatigue, and nausea. While you may not experience these symptoms all at once or even some at all, many of these symptoms often come grouped together. If you deal with these symptoms on a regular basis and for an extended length of time, consider contacting your doctor for a diagnosis. You may very well have an anxiety disorder.

Finding the Connection

Having an anxiety disorder is one thing, but how can we be so sure that fighting an anxiety disorder is also why people find themselves trapped with addictions? How do we know it isn’t a mere coincidence?

Many turn to drugs, such as alcohol, to help numb their senses and emotions in order to avoid the fear that anxiety disorders prompt. However, the problem is that such drugs only temporarily numb the pain and do nothing to solve the actual problems at hand.

In fact, relying on drugs can make these problems worse by intensifying symptoms of anxiety and irritability. This is why many addicts start and continue with a cycle of dependence, despite the consequences.

Dealing with These Disorders

Both addictions and anxiety disorders must be handled with care. Both disorders feed into each other so, in order to treat an addiction, you must be willing to treat both the addiction and anxiety disorder.

Anxiety disorders are the most common mental disorders in America, but are easily treatable. Yet only about 36% seek treatment. With how prominent yet overlooked anxiety continues to be in our society, it’s hardly a wonder why so many people fight addictions continuously and feel trapped in the midst of it.

In order to take care of an addiction, a person must be willing to treat their anxiety. But in order to treat anxiety, a person must be willing to give up their addiction to alcohol or drugs. Fighting addictions and anxiety disorders is a two-way street, and you must be willing to seek help in both ordeals.

If you or a loved one is currently fighting an addiction, consider seeking help through Discovery Place’s many programs, such as our local 30 Day Residential Program in Burns, Tennessee, as well as other Tennessee Treatment & Rehab Programs. Call us at 1-800-725-0922.

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