State of the Art Psychology
10024 Skokie Blvd., Suite 311

Skokie, IL 60077

(224)233-1323

Anxiety

What is the difference between Fear and Anxiety?
           Simply put, fear can be a healthy response; it keeps us alert to danger in our environment.  Anxiety can be an exaggerated or unrealistic fear.   Anxiety can send us false alarms about the danger we face.

Anxiety Disorders are one of the most frequently reported problems by people of all ages.

Origins of Anxiety Disorders

  • Brain biochemistry
  • An over-active flight-or-fight response
  • Stressors in one's environment
  • Learned behavior

Anxiety disorders tend to run in families, even though a single gene has not yet been identified.  If you suffer from one type of anxiety disorder (e.g. panic attack, there is a higher probability that one of your close blood relatives also suffers from an anxiety disorder, although it may not be panic attacks; it may be another type, such as social anxiety disorder or generalized anxiety disorder (also known as chronic worry).

Can I Overcome an Anxiety Disorder?

Treatment approaches include cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), exposure and response prevention (ERP), medication prescribed by a psychiatrist experienced in diagnosing and treating anxiety disorders, and group therapy.

Note:  Avoiding, or putting off, anxiety-provoking situations can make the problem worse in the long-run.
Be careful of falling into the "when...then..." syndrome.   For ex., "When my children go off to college, then I'll take care of myself"  Fill in the blanks that apply to you:  "When__________________, then___________________."


Cognitive-Behavior Therapy
involves looking at your thought patterns and identifying faulty beliefs, or tendencies, such as "jumping to conclusions", also known as "catastrophic thinking."  Once a thought is targeted for intervention, exercises are assigned to dispute the faulty belief.  Brief assignments may be recommended between sessions to reinforce new learning and to help you progress at a steady pace.

Exposure and Response Prevention:  The goal of this treatment modality is habituation, i.e. getting used to or bored with certain stimuli through prolonged exposure.  For example, when you go into a dark theater it takes a bit for your eyes to adjust to the dark.  Your eyes do habituate to the darkness, and when it's time to leave the theater they need to readjust to the daylight.  Within a couple of minutes our eyes also habituate to the brighter light outside.  Response prevention means gradually resisting the urge to perform certain rituals or compulsions.  By blocking the ritual you permit the anxiety to be present.  You can then relearn how to cope with the anxiety more adaptively.  While exposure is incorporated into the treatment plan for most anxiety disorders, response-prevention is more commonly applied to obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD).

While this may sound confusing or complicated be assured that Dr. Faier-Routman utilizes a baby-step approach which makes the felt anxiety seem manageable.  These strategies are suitable for children, teens and adults, although they are individualized for the person's developmental level.

Call now to schedule an appointment with Dr. Faier-Routman (224)233-1323 or click here to Send Me An Email 

State of the Art Psychology serves communities in Chicago and northern suburbs including: Skokie, Deerfield, Evanston, Glencoe, Glenview, Northbrook, Northfield, North Shore, Highland Park, Wilmette, Winnetka , 60076, 60077, 60645, 60201, 60202, 60203, 60204, 60613,60634, 60004, 60015, 60022, 60025, 60026, 60093, 60062, 60065, 60035, 60037, 60053, 60056, 60091, 60093, 60712.   Services provided include counseling for health concerns, including fertility issues and cancer; individual and family counseling for anxiety disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder, stress management.