Anxiety & Treatment
About 18% of adults in the U.S. suffer from one form of anxiety. Clinical anxiety isn’t the normal reaction people experience when they face dangerous or stressful situations. It’s marked by unending and unfounded fears that hinder normal activities at work and home. Such fears also prevent anxiety sufferers from participating in social activities.
While trying to cope with the effects of anxiety, many people develop a substance use disorder. People with clinical anxiety have a higher chance of suffering from drug and alcohol abuse than the rest of the population. Self-medicating usually leads to an aggravation of anxiety — drugs and alcohol make anxiety symptoms worse, which leads to an urge to use more substances to feel normal. Eventually, this leads to addiction.
What Are the Warning Signs of Anxiety?
Anxiety may take on different forms from social anxiety to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), pain disorder and phobias. However, all anxiety disorders have some common signs. Here are some of the warning signs of anxiety disorder:
- A paralyzing fear of everything or a specific negative situation. This may occur throughout the week for several months.
- A decline in satisfaction with self and life that results in poor relationships, social activities and performance at work.
- The use of drugs, tobacco, alcohol or overeating to reduce anxiety symptoms.
People with anxiety often have intense physical responses to non-threatening or dangerous objects or situations. Such responses include:
- Chest pain
- Rapid heartbeat
- Excessive sweating
- Shortness of breath
- Stomach ache
- Nausea and vomiting
- Trembling hands
- Choking sensations
A patient must have symptoms of anxiety on most days of the week for up to six months or longer to be classified as clinical anxiety.
The Major Causes of Anxiety
Researchers are still investigating the causes of anxiety, but in most cases, anxiety disorder develops because of these factors:
- Family history: Having parents or close relatives with anxiety disorder can indicate a person may be prone to anxiety.
- Trauma in childhood: People who have been exposed to physical, emotional or sexual abuse are more likely to develop PTSD.
- Substance abuse: Anxiety can result from drug or alcohol abuse.
Relationship Between Anxiety and Substance Abuse
Substance abuse occurs more frequently in people with anxiety disorders than other members of the population. For instance, anxiety disorders can extend the length of alcohol abuse and trigger relapse after drug rehab. People with anxiety may also have stronger withdrawal symptoms when they no longer use drugs or alcohol.
When substance use disorder exists along with anxiety disorder or any other type of mental illness, it’s called a co-occurring disorder. At Gateway Foundation, we specialize in treating co-occurring disorders because we know substance use disorder seldom occurs in isolation.
How to Help a Loved One Get Treatment for Anxiety and Substance Abuse
Here are some tips for talking to someone about anxiety disorder and substance abuse, so you can help them get effective treatment:
- Be compassionate and non-judgmental: Focus on the advantages of recovery and the positive effects of abstinence instead of the negative consequences of substance abuse.
- Be ready for denial: People who engage in drug or alcohol abuse normally deny their condition or respond with hostility. Get more people involved or call a specialist who can handle the situation if the person becomes violent.
- Get professional help: Offer specific remedies such as referral to a therapist, a 12-step support group or an anxiety and depression treatment center such as Gateway Foundation.
While anxiety is a common mental health issue for many people, it is successfully treated with a combination of therapy and medication. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, for example, is one of the treatments used at our anxiety treatment center. With this therapy, you learn other ways to think, react and behave in anxiety-causing situations. You also learn social skills that can help you improve your social interactions and decrease your anxiety. Our therapists deliver this type of therapy in both individual and group sessions, where you also learn from others in a similar situation.
At Gateway Foundation’s anxiety treatment program, your mental, emotional, and physical health is our primary concern. For this reason, we also offer Dual Diagnosis Treatment to address any co-occurring mental health disorders you might be experiencing at the same time you seek help for your addiction. The goal of this treatment is to get to the cause of your addictions and to prevent the risk of relapse that is often higher when there is a mental health disorder. At our mental health treatment centers Illinois, you find support and build up your strength to face the stress of daily life.
Treatment Offered with Our Anxiety Treatment Program
Our anxiety treatment program provides a full range of therapies that form the basis for our holistic treatment of your condition. These therapies have been proven to help our patients overcome addiction and to learn to cope with any mental health conditions such as anxiety so that they can begin and continue on their recovery journey. Our therapies can help you grow strong and healthy while learning the skills that will facilitate success after treatment.
The services offered in our anxiety treatment center include:
- Medication-Assisted Treatment
- Dialectical Behavioral Therapy
- Mindfulness-Based Sobriety
- Acceptance and Commitment Therapy
- Motivational Interviewing
- 12-Step Facilitation
Visit Our Anxiety Treatment Center in Chicago, IL
If you or your loved one needs treatment for anxiety disorder and drug use, please call our anxiety and OCD treatment center today at 877.381.6538. You can also send us an instant message through our contact page.
We’ve been offering effective treatment for substance misuse, anxiety disorders and other mental health issues for over 50 years in the Illinois area. Come over to Gateway Foundation to receive high-quality, compassionate, caring, friendly, non-judgmental and life-saving anxiety treatment in Chicago, IL, that works.