Anxiety counselling(A guide)

In this brief blog, we will be talking about counselling for anxiety, the skills of a counsellor for anxiety, the scenario in the counselling room for people with anxiety issues, and more topics surrounding counselling for anxiety.

What is the definition of anxiety counselling?

Anxiety counselling is one kind of psychological intervention that is used for people with anxiety problems.

Going into this kind of counselling can help you understand what’s causing your anxiety. 

There are many kinds of psychotherapies that are available for people with anxiety issues and the most prescribed is cognitive-behavioural therapy.

Cognitive behavioural therapy aims to help you control issues by making you know how your cognitions impact both your emotion and behaviour. 

Cognitive-behavioural therapy can help you by using two techniques which are to change your thoughts and then change your behaviours.

This makes the therapy easy for the client since it will be broken down into two controllable parts.

Anxiety signs and symptoms that can be treated with anxiety counselling

The list below is some of the most symptoms and signs of anxiety disorders that are healed by anxiety counselling.

Most psychotherapies for people with anxiety disorders will work on the severity of a client’s symptoms that can affect the course of therapy.

  • Feeling of dread
  • Feeling persistently on edge
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Difficulty communicating
  • Irritability
  • Easily distracted
  • Dizziness
  • Drowsiness and sleepiness
  • A feeling of pins and needles
  • Abnormal heartbeat or palpitations
  • Muscle pains and tension
  • Heartburn
  • Excessive sweating
  • Shortness of breath
  • Stomach ache
  • Nausea
  • Excretory or bladder problems
  • Headaches
  • Distressing or missed periods
  • Sleep problems

You can learn more about the signs and symptoms of anxiety by buying this book on this website.

Different kinds of therapy for people with anxiety disorders

If you’re suffering a collection of anxiety symptoms, this doesn’t mean that you are destined to face your life with constant worry and fear.

There is always treatment that can help with these kinds of symptoms and therapy has been the most effective form of treatment so far. 

This is because anxiety therapy can treat something else in anxiety disorders instead of anxiety symptoms only like anti-anxiety medications.

This kind of therapy can help you know about the causes of your anxiety, the thoughts and behaviours that may have created this kind of anxiety, and the opportunity to learn new coping skills that are effective in relieving this kind of condition. 

This is because anxiety therapy can give you tips on what you need to do to ease your anxiety when it comes.

Anxiety disorders are characterized differently in their symptoms which makes each client treated differently in the course of therapy. 

For instance, you have obsessive-compulsive disorder and you are treated differently using therapy from a person with panic attacks.

The duration of therapy will also depend on the severe symptoms of anxiety found in you. 

Unfortunately, anxiety therapies tend to be given in short-term sessions.

Research made by the American Psychological Association has found that people with anxiety disorders tend to improve when they attend 8 to 10 sessions of this kind of therapy.

Many different forms of anxiety therapy are being used to treat people with anxiety concerns with cognitive-behavioural therapy and exposure therapy being the most effective and prescribed therapies.

Any kind of this therapy can be used separately or combined with other forms of this therapy. 

Anxiety therapy can be filled with individual sessions or having only group sessions.

Despite these slight changes, the goals of this kind of therapy are still connected which are to lower your anxiety levels, overcome your fears, and relax your mind.

Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) for anxiety

As mentioned before, cognitive-behavioural therapy is the most commonly used kind of anxiety therapy.

Studies have shown that this therapy has been effective in treating anxiety disorders such as panic disorder, social anxiety disorder, specific phobias, and generalized anxiety disorder, among many other psychological disorders.

Cognitive-behavioural therapy takes into account the client’s cognitive patterns and mannerisms in approaching the world.

Using the name of this therapy, this therapy focuses on two elements of psychological treatment:

  • Cognitive therapy examines how negative thinking patterns contribute to anxiety problems.
  • Behaviour therapy addresses how you behave and respond in circumstances that cause anxiety issues.

The assumption of cognitive-behavioural therapy is that our internal states and environmental factors can cause our negative behaviours.

In this case, it is the perception of the event that affects your negative behaviours which leads to psychological disorders. 

For instance, you are being invited into a wild and gregarious party.

You need to address your thinking patterns about the invitation and how they affect your feelings about the party.

If you are still following the situation, you will different that this party can lead to different perspectives about it.

In this case, it will always be based on individual expectations, beliefs, and attitudes. 

People with anxiety disorders have a bad record of using negative thinking patterns which are habitual in these people and leads to incessant fear and worry.

This is why the goal of cognitive-behavioural therapy is to determine these negative thinking patterns and help them correct some unrealistic assumptions. 

In other words, the goal of cognitive-behavioural therapy is to know your thinking patterns then you will know how you feel.

You can learn more about this therapy by buying this book on this website.

Exposure therapy for people with anxiety disorders

Of course, anxiety is an unpleasant feeling which is why the temptation to avoid it at all costs is very strong.

This is why some people with severe anxiety issues will get away from situations where their anxiety will skyrocket. 

If you have a fear of heights, you won’t be taking the bridge even though it’s the fastest path to your home.

You may even have performance anxiety which will make you not attend your best friend’s wedding where you will have to make a speech. 

The problem with always preventing your anxious circumstances is that you never had the chance to deal with them.

Additionally, psychologists have found that the constant avoidance of anxiety can only make this psychological condition worse for you.

Exposure therapy is another kind of anxiety therapy that will let you get exposed to situations or objects that will trigger your anxiety.

The assumption of this therapy is that you will be relieved of your anxiety if you are continuously being exposed to your anxious circumstances. 

This exposure is completed in two ways where you will get to see or apply the anxious circumstance in the therapy room and being able to encounter it in real life.

Exposure therapy has also been used in combination with cognitive-behavioural therapy based on the chronic anxiety symptoms of the patient.

Systematic desensitization for people with anxiety disorders

Systematic desensitization is a form of exposure therapy where clients are gradually exposed to their feared situations or objects instead of immediately confronting the feared situations or objects.

This therapy follows a step-by-step technique which is called the fear hierarchy. 

Systematic desensitization helps clients with anxiety disorders to gradually challenge their fears, master skills for controlling panic and develop self-confidence.

This therapy involves the following components that are used for all clients with different anxiety disorders:

  • Learning relaxation techniques. The client will be taught about the deep breathing technique or the progressive muscle relaxation which can induce calmness. You will need to practice these relaxation techniques when you’re outside of therapy. When you are encountering your anxious situations or objects, you will be applying these relaxation skills to your advantage so you will be able to relax.
  • Making a hierarchical list. You’ll be making a list of 10 to 20 fearful situations that move you toward your final aim in therapy. For instance, if your overall aim is to conquer your fear of flying, you might begin by looking at pictures of planes and end with taking an actual flight in a plane. Each stepping stone should be as certain and clear as possible with an attainable purpose.
  • Practising through the steps. Under the assistance of your therapist, you’ll begin to work through the list you’ve made from the previous step. The aim is to remain in each terrifying circumstance until your fears fade away. That way, you’ll learn that the terrifying emotions won’t hurt you and they do subside. Every time the anxiety gets too overwhelming, you will move to the relaxation strategy you learned. Once you’re calm again, you can move your attention back to the terrifying circumstance. In this case, you will move through the stepping stones until you’re able to fulfil each one without feeling overwhelmed.

You can learn more about systematic desensitization as anxiety therapy by buying this book on this website.

Complementary therapies for people with anxiety disorders

Complementary therapies can be additional backup treatments for people with anxiety disorders to achieve emotional balance.

Exercise is a great self-help treatment for anxiety since this can relieve stress. 

Studies show that having at least 30 minutes of exercise every day will bring anxiety relief on a person.

To get the most benefit, you should try having at least one hour of exercise to see the effects immediately.

Natural relaxation strategies such as mindfulness meditation and progressive muscle relaxation when practised daily can minimize anxiety and enhance feelings of emotional wellbeing.

Biofeedback is another relaxation technique that uses physical reactions such as heart rate, muscle tension, and breathing to teach you to know your body’s anxiety reaction and learn how to manage it using the learned relaxation strategies.

Hypnosis is another form of therapy that is used in combination with cognitive-behavioural therapy to help treat people with anxiety disorders.

While you’re in a state of intense relaxation, the hypnotherapist uses varied therapeutic strategies to help expose yourself to your fears and look at them in new perspectives.

How can anxiety therapy help affected people?

Anxiety therapy can help people with anxiety disorders by letting them practice relaxation techniques and getting them to see their anxious situations in a better perspective.

As mentioned before, several of these therapies will teach patients research-based techniques that can help the patient be more relaxed in nervous situations.

You can get some tips on how to apply these relaxation techniques by buying this book here.

The benefits of anxiety counselling

There are various benefits of anxiety counselling and one of them is that you will feel less stressed out than before.

Also, you will be able to place an input in your brain about how you would handle overwhelming situations.

Here are some techniques that are inherent in anxiety counselling that can benefit your mental wellbeing:

  • Learn what triggers anxiety or panic and how to develop control
  • Discover how to determine anxiety or panic attack causes and reduce their effect
  • Learn how to alter compulsive thought, physical symptoms, and behaviour which enhance anxiety episodes
  • Discover proven and efficient panic prevention and removal techniques
  • Learn stress reduction strategies to minimize the physical side effects of anxiety or panic
  • Build tailor-made coping techniques to control stressful circumstances effectively
  • Build a set of tools and strategies to help you to effectively avoid or control any future anxiety issues

What happens when you refer yourself for anxiety therapy?

The following are the ways that you can refer yourself to anxiety therapy for your anxiety problems:

  • Call your local psychological therapies service.
  • Someone from the psychological therapies service will get in contact often within several weeks.
  • They’ll ask for more information about the issues you’re having and this is termed psychological assessment.
  • If the service thinks they can assist you, they’ll prescribe a form of anxiety therapy for you. This therapy depends on your symptoms and signs and how chronic they are.
  • Waiting periods for the first therapy session are different. The psychological therapies service will tell you what to expect from the therapy session.

Side Note: I have tried and tested various products and services to help with my anxiety and depression. See my top recommendations here, as well as a full list of all products and services our team has tested for various mental health conditions and general wellness.

Conclusion

In this brief blog, we have talked about counselling for anxiety, the skills of a counsellor for anxiety, the scenario in the counselling room for people with anxiety issues, and more topics surrounding counselling for anxiety.

If you have any inquires about anxiety counselling, please let us know and the team will gladly answer your questions for you. 

FAQs: Anxiety counseling

What do counselors do for anxiety?

Many counselors are trained to diagnose anxiety and provide treatment.

Many are also able to teach you effective ways for coping with your anxiety, so that your symptoms have less of an impact on your daily life and activities.

One common type of anxiety counseling is cognitive behavioral therapy.

Is counseling good for anxiety?

It’s used to treat many mental and physical health problems but is especially effective at treating anxiety.

You’ll work with a therapist to break down your problems into smaller, more manageable parts.

And you’ll learn techniques for dealing with each of them in turn.

What is the difference between a psychologist and a counsellor?

The difference between a psychologist and a counsellor is that the psychologist works with patients with severe mental illnesses while the counsellor works with clients who are dealing with problems in daily life.

What are the 6 types of anxiety disorders?

The 6 types of anxiety disorders are generalized anxiety disorder, specific phobia, panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder.

These psychological disorders are classified as anxiety disorders since they have similar anxiety symptoms. 

Is severe anxiety a mental illness?

Severe anxiety can become a mental illness if it rules over people’s lives to the point that anxiety is more important than the person’s important areas in life.

This is because severe anxiety can cause significant distress and dysfunction in a person’s life.

Citations

American Psychological Association. Beyond Worry: How Psychologists Help With Anxiety Disorders.

AnxietyUK. ACCESSING THERAPY.

CalmClinic. Counseling For Anxiety: Does It Work?.

Counselling Directory. Anxiety. 

GoodTherapy. Anxiety.

HelpGuide. Therapy for Anxiety Disorders.

NHS. Can I get free therapy or counselling?.

Therapytribe. Anxiety Counseling.

Enjoyed this article? Then Repin to your own inspiration board so others can too!

Was this post helpful?