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Flashcards in Anxiety Disorders Deck (17):

Generalized Anxiety Disorder

Emotional-cognitive symptoms:
- worrying
- anxious feelings / thoughts, sometimes w/ no attachment to any subject
Physical symptoms:
- autonomic arousal
- tension; restlessness; insomnia
- nausia


Panic Disorder

Repeated / unexpected panic attacks, as well as a fear of the next attack, and a change in behavior to avoid panic attacks


What constitutes a panic attack?

Panic attack includes:
- minutes of intense dread / fright
- chest pains, choking, numbness; very similar to heart attack
- feeling of a need to escape


Specific Phobia

Uncontrollable, irrational, intense desire to avoid the same object or situation; even an image triggers the reaction
eg. agoraphobia: fear of panic attack; social phobia: fear of being watched / judged


Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

Obsessions are intense, unwanted worries, ideas, and images that repeatedly pop up in mind
Compulsion is a repeatedly, illogically strong feeling of needing to carry out an action
Common pattern: Rechecking things


Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

- Repeated intrusive recall of burned-in memories
- Nightmares
- Social withdrawal / phobic avoidance
- Jumpy anxiety / hypervigilance
- Insomnia


Which people are more likely to get PTSD?

Those with:
- less control on situations
- likelihood to get re/traumatized
- brain differences
- less resiliency


How should a person recover from PTSD?

Not overwhelming self w/ stress
Finding strengths w/in self
Finding connections / hope w/ others
Seeing the trauma as a challenge to be overcome


How would classical conditioning of an anxiety affect the anxiety?

Overgeneralizing a conditioned response from classical conditioning creates a general feel of anxiety when anything relating to the conditioned stimulus is present
eg. Little Albert and rabbits (fluffy)


How does operant conditioning of an anxiety affect the anxiety?

When we avoid an anxious decision, we're rewarded with relief, reinforcing our anxious avoidance; this further increases anxious thoughts / behaviors


What role does observational learning play in anxiety?

If you see someone avoiding / fearing a stimulus, you may adopt that fear even though the original scared person is not around


How does cognition relate to anxiety?

Cognition includes worried thoughts, as well as interpretations, appraisals, beliefs, predictions, and ruminations; it also includes mental habits often included in PTSD


Examples of Hypervigilance

- Cognitive Error: belief that we can predict a bad event
- Irrational Beliefs
- Mistaken Appraisals: making incorrect associations btwn objects and anxiety stimuli
- Misinterpretations


How do genetics tie in with Anxiety?

Some genes code for innate phobias
- some ppl are born w/ temperaments
Ppl w/ anxiety have a problem w/ a gene associated w/ serotonin / glutamate



Neurotransmitter involved in regulating sleep and mood
Ppl w/ anxiety have a problem w/ a gene that regulates the level of serotonin in the body



Excitatory neurotransmitter involved in the brain's alarm centers
Ppl w/ anxiety have a problem w/ a gene that regulates the level of glutamate in the body


What happens to the brain during anxious moments?

Traumatic experiences burn fear circuits into the amygdala
Anxiety disorders include overarousal of brain areas involved in impulse control / habitual behavior
eg. OCD shows extra activity in anterior cingulate cortex, which monitors actions/ checks errors