What Causes an Anxiety Disorder?


Quick Answer

The exact causes of anxiety disorders are unknown. However, certain risk factors associated with these conditions include personality, family history, being female, stress and brain illness. People with anxiety disorders experience constant fear and worry, according to WebMD.

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Full Answer

While it is normal for people to experience episodes of fear and anxiety, those with anxiety disorders continuously battle with these feelings. The feelings become quite overwhelming and may interfere with activities such as school work, relationships and job performance, notes the National Institute of Mental Health.

Some of the most common examples of anxiety disorders include generalized anxiety disorder, social anxiety disorder, specific phobias and panic disorders. A family history of anxiety disorders is one of the most common risk factors associated with the condition. This may be because of certain genetic issues that cause people with blood relations to suffer from the condition.

People who are affected by environmental stress are also likely to get the condition. Those who are constantly faced with stressful situations but do not develop good coping mechanism may be quite vulnerable. Research has shown that females are more commonly diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorders as compared to males, according to Mayo Clinic. Medication, psychotherapy, cognitive-behavioral therapy and dietary and lifestyle changes are some of the treatment options available for anxiety disorders.

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