What is anxiety counselling?
If you find yourself struggling with worry, dread or panic you are not alone. The World Health Organization tracks this common mental health challenge and millions of people report feeling these emotions. There was also a huge increase in the diagnosis of this condition during COVID.
Anxiety therapy is not as easy to quantify because each one of those millions of individuals suffers for a unique set of causes. For instance, during the lockdowns some people really enjoyed being at home and this decreased their anxiety; whereas for others it caused a sense of being trapped.
One of the most recognized treatments for anxiety is cognitive behaviour therapy or CBT. This type of treatment always decreases symptoms in clinical trials so it is the most common treatment recommendation. There are other studies though that show the relationship with the therapist was the most powerful factor.
A good anxiety therapist will begin with a thorough assessment to determine the cause of your symptoms and to determine your personality type. They will then plan treatment accordingly.
How does counselling work for anxiety?
Anxiety counselling works differently depending on the individual and how the feelings and emotions are impacting their life. Some clients love the CBT approach which often includes working on assignments between appointments. Other clients want nothing to do with homework so a plan is created that involves more focused discussions during a session.
This is typical anxiety therapy but not all cases are typical. We have met with many individuals who are experiencing anxiety and even panic attacks, yet under further investigation it is discovered they are actually quite angry or overwhelmingly sad. In some cases, the person is immobilized because of a detrimental relationship with a family member, spouse or partner, or with an employer. These underlying issues are what is actually causing the feeling of dread.
You can imagine then that a treatment plan for anxiety varies extensively depending on the client’s circumstances and personality.
Why is anxiety counselling important?
It’s crucial to seek out anxiety counselling because it’s like any other illness in that it gets worse over time and it can spread. For instance, your anxiety might be associated with your job. You might be afraid to drive your car, leave your home or have constant thoughts about catastrophic events.
Psychological research has proven that each time you avoid a situation because of an unrealistic fear you strengthen that particular belief. This is called confirmation bias and it’s important to note that understanding it doesn’t always cure it. That’s where good anxiety therapy can be so helpful.
The decision to put off therapy for anxiety can cause it to spread in the sense that it leads to other mental health challenges. Many individuals start to use a substance for courage, or to make themselves feel calmer. At first the substance is like a good medication and the person gets the result they want but as time goes on, they build a dependence and now have an even worse mental health challenge. This can even lead to addiction.
Who uses anxiety counselling services?
According to the World Health Organization anxiety is the most common mental health problem next to depression. There was a significant increase during COVID and research shows this pattern continuing even though many nations have returned to life without lock downs.
As you can probably imagine, given anxiety is so prevalent, the profile of individuals who seek out and benefit from anxiety counselling is diverse. There are the extremely shy clients; but some of the seemingly most courageous and even aggressive people appear that way because underneath they are also struggling with so much ongoing dread and worry.
Some of our clients in anxiety therapy are high-functioning and others are afraid to leave their home. Anxiety is so ubiquitous there is no specific type of individual in psychotherapy for anxiety.
Our goal is to help you explore those underlying difficulties and work towards resolving them. No matter where you are in your addiction and recovery journey, we can help you. Whether you are entering the first stages of recovery, are going through rehab or twelve-step programs, or have several years of sobriety under your belt, we will provide a safe, caring environment that is free from judgment, in which you can begin or continue your recovery.
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When to seek help for anxiety symptoms?
There are common anxiety symptoms and the best time to seek help is as soon as you begin to experience them. If you thought you had symptoms of cancer you would immediately go to the doctor, but we have been socialized to think mental health problems are less threatening. The truth is, over a period of time, anxiety tends to get worse – not better.
Here are some symptoms to help you decide if you are a candidate for anxiety counselling.
- You worry excessively about things that are beyond your control
- You suffer from shortness of breath, heart palpitations or uncontrollable trembling or shaking
- You experience hot flashes, chills or sweating that is not associated with physical activity
- You are suffering from digestive problems, such as nausea, vomiting, cramps and diarrhea
- You have dizzy spells
- You have a fear of dying or losing control
- You feel detached from the world around you
- Your anxiety is interfering with your ability to work, attend school or perform daily living activities
- You experience panic attacks that may be accompanied by chest pains
If you are experiencing these symptoms, we understand it can be difficult to open up but anxiety therapy is designed to make this process easier.
How much does anxiety counselling cost?
The cost of anxiety counselling depends on the severity of your symptoms and the treatment plan designed by you and your therapist. Your budget and coverage will be taken into account when you meet with your therapist. Anxiety therapy is covered by several insurance plans.
What is InnerSight Psychotherapy’s process for working with clients who require anxiety counselling?
You can come to our office in Vaughan for anxiety counselling or meet with one of our therapists online. Most clients meet with a therapist for a consultation where you can identify what’s been happening that is causing you distress and you can ask the therapist about their training and experience.
If you decide to work with the therapist, they will book an initial assessment where they will ask about your family history, work-life and relationships. This information will be used to create a plan for your specific anxiety therapy sessions.
Clients often tell us they experience some relief during the assessment because the session helps identify the cause of the anxiety. Often people don’t understand where their anxiety began and knowing helps them make sense of their experience. This is the first step and creates a sense of relief. In the following meetings with your therapist for anxiety therapy you should begin to experience small shifts in your mood and reactions.
How Can InnerSight Psychotherapists Help You?
We have therapists who specialize in anxiety counselling at our offices in Vaughan and we also offer sessions online. We are accepting new clients and offer no-charge consultations so you can get a sense if the person is a good fit for you.
Anxiety is one of the most common mental health struggles but there is some good news. The fact that so many people experience this type of intense worry and fear means it is one of the most common issues studied by psychological researchers. There are many approaches that have been proven to significantly reduce symptoms. Our therapists have studied these approaches and continue to update their skills with courses, seminars and conferences.