There are several different types of abnormal, pathological anxieties, fears, phobias and nervous conditions that can occur suddenly or gradually over a span of years and one common blanket term for these illnesses is anxiety disorder. This type of disorder may result in the impairment or prevention of normal daily routines in the patient and both anxiety as well as fear is an omnipresent emotion.

Though the term anxiety as well as fear have scientifically different interpretations, in common parlance the two terms are used interchangeably. This is so in the case of phobia which is another form of anxiety and can be defined as being fear that persists or is irrational and fear is defined as an emotional as well as physiological reply to external threats as they are perceived by the patient and such external threats may be a crash that is about to take place or a runaway car.

Types of Disorders

The different types of anxiety disorders include panic disorder, agoraphobia, social anxiety disorder (social phobia), specific phobia or simple phobia, generalized anxiety disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder. The panic disorder relates to experiencing periods of fear that is very intense or is a psychological distress that comes about abruptly and lasts as little as half an hour and common symptoms are trembling, shortness of breath, palpitations of the heart, sweating, nausea, dizziness and hyperventilation as well as tingling sensations and also a feeling of being choked.

Social anxiety disorders are an experiencing of fear, apprehension or worry in respect to certain social situations as well as being worried about how they are perceived or evaluated by other people. This is a psychiatric disorder and the patient needs psychiatric treatment. Specific phobia occurs when there is any type of anxiety disorder that can be thought of as being unreasonable or an irrational feeling of fear that is caused by being exposed to definite objects or situations. The affected person is prone to actively avoiding direct contact with the object or situation.

The general anxiety disorder is a condition which has the characteristics of excessive as well as uncontrollable worrying about normal everyday activities. There is a disproportionate intensity as well as duration of this form of anxiety disorder in relation to the actual source of worry and causes the patient to have his or her daily life disrupted.

While obsessive-compulsive disorder is really a psychiatric disorder and more specifically an anxiety disorder that manifests itself in a number of different ways but is mainly linked to obsessive thinking as well as related compulsions that are used to counteract the fixation. Finally, the post-traumatic stress disorder is an anxiety disorder that is caused by exposure to or confrontation with stressful experiences, which are considered highly traumatic by the patient.

An anxiety disorder can, in most cases be debilitating and that too, chronically and may begin at a young age or may suddenly be triggered after a triggering event occurs. However, there are many drugs that can be used to treat it, so hope is not lost for patients of anxiety disorders.