Saturday 27 April 2013

Looking at the Numbers

Well first of all let me apologize for not posting Thursday after group or even yesterday.  As I expected I was feeling less than stellar.  I do however want to share some interesting insight I gained from my group.  It was a pretty informal thing as only two of us made it. Pretty hard to hide in a group of two with two leaders. I asked our group leader what the recovery rates or outlook was for people with social anxiety.  She said basically it falls into three groups 1/3 have one bout of it and are never affected again, 1/3 have 2-3 episodes and 1/3 struggle with it on an  ongoing basis.  So I guess I fall into that final group. That is ok though.  I know that this is something I will deal with daily so that gives me more ammunition to get myself into a strong routine and plan for this thing.  I did some more research online and found this:

Facts About Anxiety Disorders
  • 25% of the population will at sometime in their lives, suffer from an anxiety disorder ranging from specific phobias to more debilitating disorders such as panic disorder. 5-7% will suffer from panic disorder. Up to 10% may have social anxiety. (Health Canada 1996).
  • Ratio of female (16%) to male (9%) with anxiety disorders. (Chambless, Cherney, Caputo, Reinstein, 1987)
  • Anxiety disorders are the most treatable of all mental illnesses.
  • Anxiety disorders are often accompanied by depression. Risk of suicide is high. Persons with panic disorder were 7 times greater at risk for suicide than those with major depression or those with neither disorder. (Weissman & Merikangas, 1986)
  • Cognitive behavior therapy is reported to be 80-90% effective with an 80% recovery rate a year later depending on the extent of avoidant behavior. (Walker, Cox 1998).
  • Alcohol and drugs are often used to self-medicate for anxiety and panic. 23% - 44% of inpatient alcoholics have one or more anxiety disorders. (Chambless, Cherney, Caputo & Reinstein, 1987)
  • Unresolved, on-going high stress levels put ALL individuals at risk of developing an anxiety disorder.
  • Early intervention means rapid recovery.

Major Anxiety Disorders
  • Anxiety disorders are one of the most common mental health problems.
  • Anxiety disorders carry significant personal and societal costs in terms of lost wages, decreased productivity, reduced quality of life and frequent use of health care services.
  • Treatment for anxiety disorders is 80-90% effective with an 80% recovery rate a year later, depending on the degree of avoidant behaviour.
Panic Disorder
Panic disorder is characterized by repeated panic attacks and a persistent fear of future attacks. A panic attack is a period of intense fear and discomfort that often strikes "out of the blue". Symptoms may include:
  • shortness of breath
  • racing heart
  • tight chest
  • trembling or shaking
  • choking sensations
  • numbness or tingling
  • dizziness
  • feelings of unreality
People suffering a panic attack believe they are in mortal danger, i.e. they are dying, having a heart attack or losing control.
Persons with panic disorder often develop agoraphobia, the fear of being in a public place and far from help. If left untreated, agoraphobia can become so disabling that some individuals are completely housebound.

I hope this is helpful. I am thinking of you all and hoping your week went well.-Tracy

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