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Flashcards in Anxiety disorders Deck (20):

An emotional response ex. apprehension, tension, uneasiness to anticipation of danger, the source of which is largely unknown or unrecognized. Anxiety may be regarded as pathologic when it interferes with effectiveness in living, achievement of desired goals or reasonable emotional comfort.



an external pressure that is brought to bear on the individual



The symptoms come on unexpectedly; that is they do not occur immediately before or on exposure to a situation that usually causes anxiety
-Organic factors have been ruled out

panic disorder


characterized by chronic, unrealistic, and excessive anxiety and worry. Symotoms last for more than 6 months and cannot be attributed to specific organic factors.



-excessive anxiety and worry about a number of events
-easily fatigued
-difficulty concentrating "going blank"
-muscle tension
-sleep disturbance

symptoms of GAD


focuses on the inability of the ego to intervene when conflict occurs between the id and the superego, producing anxiety
-results in maladaptive responses to anxiety

psychodynamic theory


faulty, distorted or counterproductive thinking patterns accompany or precede maladpative behaviors and emotional disorders

Cognitive theory


-has a strong genetic element
- involvement of the temporal lobe, hippocampus and the amygdala
-abnormal elevations of blood lactate
-elevation of norepinepherine
-taking yohimbine
-Several medical conditions (MI, mitral valve prolapse, hypoglycemia, seizures, caffeine intoxication, etc.)

panic disorder


fear cued by the presence or anticipation of a specific object or situation, exposure to which almost invariably provokes an immediate anxiety response or panic attack even though the subject recognizes that the fear is excessive or unreasonable



fear of being in places or situations from which escape might be difficult, or in which help might not be available if a limited-symptom attack or panic like symptoms.
-onset 20-30's most common in women



excessive fear of situation which a person might do something embarrassing or be evaluated negatively by others.

social phobia


marked, persistent and excessive or unreasonable fear when in the presence of, or when anticipating an encounter with, a specific object or situation.

specific phobia


believed that phobias developed when a child experiences normal incestuous feelings toward the opposite sex parent(Oedipal/Electra complex) and fears aggression from the same sex parent(castration anxiety)

psychoanalytical theory


a stressful stimuli produces an "unconditioned response" of fear. When the stressful stimuli is repeatedly paired with a harmless object, eventually the harmless object becomes "conditioned" response to fear.

the learning theory


unwanted, intrusive, persistent ideas, thoughts, impulses, or images that cause marked anxiety or distress.
-most common include need for things to be in order, contamination, repeated doubts, horrific impulses, and sexual imagery



unwanted repetitive behavior patterns or mental acts(praying, counting, repeating words silently)
-Washing, cleaning, checking, requesting, demanding assurances



staying away from the source

passive avoidance


when passive avoidance is not an option the individual learns to engage in behaviors that provide relief from anxiety and discomfort associated with the traumatic situation

active avoidance


-do not leave client alone
-Maintain a calm, nonthreatening, matter of fact approach. Anxiety is contagious
-use simple words and brief messages
-keep immediate surroundings low in stimuli
administer tranquilizing medication, as ordered and assess SE
-when the level of anxiety has reduced, explore with the client possible reasons for its occurrence
-teach the client the signs and symptoms of escalating anxiety and ways to interrupt its progression

interventions for the anxious client


-Explore the clients perception of threat to physical integrity or threat to self-concept. Reassure the client of his or her safety.
-Discuss the reality of the situation
-Include the client in making decisions related to the selection of alternative coping strategies
-If the client decides to work to eliminate the fear, the techniques of systematic desensitization or implosion therapy may be employed.
-Encourage the client to explore underlying feelings that may contribute to irrational fears.

interventions for the fearful client