incredible-marketing Arrow

How Do Older Adults Experience Anxiety?

When most people think of anxiety, they think of adolescents to middle age adults. According to Mental Health America (MHA), between approximately 3% and 14% of older adults meet the criteria for a diagnosed anxiety disorder; the most common anxiety disorders found amongst this population are generalized anxiety disorders (GADs) and phobias. For many older people, symptoms of anxiety may have developed in their teen years and went untreated – unfortunately, this may have caused an exacerbation of their symptoms over the years, which could have led to the development of a disorder. The prevalence of anxiety amongst older adults means that this population needs special attention – the more help and support that is provided, the greater the quality of life.

A 2017 study published in the American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry sought to explore anxiety disorders among older adults, with age and gender-related differences as well. A survey was completed by 3,142 men and women aged 65 to 84 years old. Anxiety disorders were assessed, and results from the study found 17.2% of the participants to have one of the following anxiety disorders:

  • Agoraphobia – fear of places and situations that may cause panic, helplessness, or embarrassment
  • Panic disorder – reoccurring, unexpected panic attacks and fear of having them
  • Animal phobia
  • General anxiety disorder (GAD) – persistent and excessive worrying
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) – may occur after a traumatic event; symptoms may include flashbacks, nightmares, anxiety, depression, heightened reactions, and more
  • Social phobia – intense, persistent fear of being watched or judged by others
  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) – obsessions and compulsions that cause much distress in daily life

No matter your age, recovery from anxiety is possible. Medication can become part of the treatment plan as well as psychotherapy – giving you a chance to work through your fears with a licensed healthcare professional. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is a common therapeutic approach because it helps clients work through negative, unproductive thought patterns and embraces more positive, productive ones that are conducive to one’s well-being. If you haven’t already, speak with a professional from a reputable treatment center to learn more about treatment options. Seek the help you need today.

The Guest House Ocala specializes in the treatment of trauma, addictions, and related mental health issues. Clinical expertise, a compassionate team, and an outstanding attention to detail ensures each guest’s experience will be customized to their needs. Call us today for information on our residential treatment programs: 1-855-483-7800