Anxiety disorders are among the most prevalent of psychological disorders, affecting up to 20% of the population. The key features shared by the anxiety disorders include excessive or unrealistic fear and anxiety, avoidance of feared objects and situations, and excessive attempts to reduce discomfort or to protect oneself from potential threat. In addition, for an anxiety disorder to be diagnosed, the person has to report considerable distress over having the anxiety symptoms, or the symptoms have to cause significant interference in the individual's life. In fact, in severe cases, people with anxiety disorders may be unable to work, develop relationships, or even leave their homes. Anxiety dis orders often pose an enormous financial burden on society. For example, they often lead to lower work productivity and considerable increases in health care utilization.
Was this article helpful?