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Types of Anxiety Disorders: An Overview

  • Written by Business Daily Media

Anxiety is a common emotion experienced by many, yet when it escalates into a disorder, it significantly impacts daily life. Understanding the different types of anxiety disorders is crucial in identifying and managing them effectively. For those seeking guidance, particularly in Melbourne, anxiety counselling can provide the support needed to navigate these challenging conditions.

Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD)

GAD is characterised by persistent and excessive worry about various aspects of life, including work, health, or everyday routines. Individuals with GAD often find it hard to control their concern, leading to symptoms like restlessness, fatigue, difficulty concentrating, irritability, muscle tension, and sleep disturbances.

Panic Disorder

Panic disorder is marked by recurrent, unexpected panic attacks – sudden surges of intense fear or discomfort reaching a peak within minutes. Symptoms during a panic attack can include heart palpitations, sweating, trembling, shortness of breath, feelings of impending doom, or loss of control. The fear of experiencing another attack can lead to avoidance behaviours, significantly impacting a person's life.

Social Anxiety Disorder

This disorder involves an intense fear of social situations due to worries about being judged, embarrassed, or humiliated. It's more than just shyness; it's a deep-seated fear that can hinder work, school, and other daily activities. Physical symptoms may include blushing, nausea, excessive sweating, trembling, or difficulty speaking.


Phobias are intense, irrational fears of specific objects or situations. Common phobias include fear of heights (acrophobia), spiders (arachnophobia), and flying (aviophobia). These fears are disproportionate to the actual danger posed and often lead to avoidance behaviours. 

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) 

OCD is characterised by unwanted, persistent thoughts (obsessions) and/or repetitive behaviours (compulsions). These compulsions – such as hand washing, checking, or counting – are often performed with the hope of preventing obsessive thoughts or making them go away. However, the relief is temporary, and not performing the rituals can increase anxiety.

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

PTSD can develop after exposure to a terrifying event or ordeal in which severe physical harm occurred or was threatened. Symptoms include flashbacks, nightmares, severe anxiety, and uncontrollable thoughts about the event.

Seeking Help

Recognising these types of anxiety disorders is the first step towards managing them. For those in Melbourne, seeking professional help can be a vital part of this journey. There is anxiety counselling located in Melbourne that offers specialised support, helping individuals understand their anxiety and develop coping strategies. 


Anxiety disorders, while challenging, are treatable conditions. With the right support, individuals can learn to manage their symptoms and lead fulfilling lives. Remember, seeking help is a sign of strength, not weakness. If you or someone you know is struggling with anxiety, consider reaching out to a professional for support.


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