Anxiety - causes, symptoms, diagnosis and treatment

Medically Reviewed by Dr Sravya, MBBS, MS 


Being occasionally anxious is a common component of being human. However, those who struggle with anxiety disorders frequently experience persistent, exaggerated fear and dread about everyday situations. Panic attacks, which are frequent repeating episodes of rapid, severe anxiety and fear or great terror that crescendo in minutes, are a common symptom of anxiety disorders.


These anxiety and panic symptoms interfere with daily activities, are difficult to control, are more severe than the actual threat, and last for long periods of time. You might avoid particular locations or circumstances to prevent feeling these emotions. Children or adolescents may experience symptoms that last until adulthood.

A collection of conditions known together as “anxiety disorders” include social anxiety disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, separation anxiety disorder, and specific phobias. 

There is a chance of having several anxiety disorders at once. An underlying medical problem that needs treatment might also occasionally be the cause of worry.

Table of Contents

Symptoms of Anxiety

Common signs of anxiousness include:

There are numerous subtypes of anxiety disorders:

How to Know When to Seek Medical Help

It is advised to consult a medical professional if

1. Underlying Elements

Anxiety disorders’ specific causes continue to be a little tricky. It appears that individuals who already have a tendency to anxiety may suffer anxiety disorders as a result of life events, particularly stressful ones. Inherent characteristics may also have a role in the emergence of certain illnesses.

2. Medical Foundations

An underlying medical problem may be connected to anxiety in certain people. In certain cases, anxiety symptoms act as the first warning signs of a medical condition. Your healthcare professional could suggest diagnostic testing to look into any underlying disorders if they have reason to believe that your worry may have a medical cause.

The following are examples of medical conditions that may be related to anxiety:

On rare occasions, a negative drug reaction can manifest as anxiety. It’s possible that an underlying medical condition may be the cause of your anxiety if you find yourself in any of the following circumstances:

Factors Increasing Risk

Anxiety of Causes

There are several factors that could increase your risk of having a condition of anxiety:


Beyond simple worry, anxiety disorders can cause or worsen a number of other mental and physical conditions, such as:


Even though it’s impossible to foresee with absolute accuracy what can lead to the emergence of an anxiety disorder, there are steps. If you already have symptoms, what can you do to minimize their severity? Have anxiety:

Diagnosing anxiety involves a thorough assessment by a mental health professional, who evaluates symptoms, triggers, and their impact on daily life. This process often includes clinical interviews and may use standardized questionnaires to aid in diagnosis.

Anxiety treatment approaches vary but often encompass a combination of psychotherapy, such as cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), and, in some cases, medication. CBT helps individuals identify and manage anxious thoughts and behaviors, promoting healthier coping strategies. Medications like SSRIs or benzodiazepines may be prescribed in severe cases to alleviate symptoms.

Personalized treatment plans are crucial in addressing anxiety effectively, as they cater to individual needs and severity levels. Regular follow-ups and adjustments in the treatment plan are common to ensure ongoing progress and symptom management. Seeking professional help is essential for anyone grappling with anxiety, as early intervention can greatly improve the outcome and quality of life.