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Mental Health Conditions

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Anxiety Disorders

Anxiety Disorders involve a state of distressing chronic but fluctuating nervousness that is inappropriately severe for the person's circumstances.

Anxiety is a normal response to a threat or to psychological stress and is experienced occasionally by everyone. Normal anxiety has its root in fear and serves an important survival function. When someone is faced with a dangerous situation, anxiety induces the fight-or-flight response. With this response, a variety of physical changes, such as increased blood flow to the heart and muscles, provide the body with the necessary energy and strength to deal with life-threatening situations, such as running from an aggressive animal or fighting off an attacker. However, when anxiety occurs at inappropriate times, occurs frequently, or is so intense and long-lasting that it interferes with a person's normal activities, then it is considered a disorder.

Anxiety Disorders are more common than any other category of mental health disorder and are believed to affect about 15% of adults in the world. However, Anxiety Disorders often are not recognized by people who have them or by health care professionals and consequently are seldom treated.

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