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What is Anxiety?

Anxiety is a term for several disorders that cause nervousness, fear, and worry. It affects how we feel and behave, and can  often result in physical symptoms. Worry and fear are normal feelings, but anxiety is considered a problem when symptoms impede a person’s ability to function. These disorders thus occur when a reaction is out of proportion with what might be normally expected in a situation.

Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) is a chronic disorder involving long-lasting anxiety and worry about nonspecific life events, objects, and situations.

Social Anxiety Disorder is a type of social phobia appearing as a heightened fear of being negatively judged by others or of being embarrassed in public. This disorder can cause people to avoid public situations and human interaction to the point that their quality of life is greatly impaired.

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What is Stress?

Stress is the body’s reaction to changes that require an adjustment or response. The body reacts to these changes with physical, mental, and emotional responses. Stress is a normal part of life. Stress becomes an issue when a person faces ongoing challenges without relief. As a result, stress-related tension builds. The body has a built-in stress response that causes different changes to allow the body to combat stressful situations. This stress response is also known as the “fight or flight response”. This response can become over-activated during long periods of stress. Lengthened stress response causes both physical and emotional breakdown.

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How can therapy help with Anxiety and Stress?

A type of therapy called Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is shown to be effective for helping people with Anxiety and Stress. It teaches you how your thoughts, feelings, and behaviours work together, and teaches skills like solving problems, managing stress, realistic thinking, and relaxation. Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction Therapy is also helpful in managing stress and in relaxation.

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