Anticipatory Anxiety Disorder: Explanation, Effects and symptoms

Anticipatory Anxiety

What is Anticipatory Anxiety?

Anticipatory anxiety is “Too many negative thoughts about future event or situations.” A mind process in which, we visualize the worst scenario that could happen to us in any future situation or event.

For example, before flying, you might think that an airplane could crash, would not be able to breathe in an aircraft or flee in case of emergency. In this way, our defense mechanism is activated, so it pushes us to stay away from phobias and worries.

These non-existed phobias are so compelling to drop it. Like other anxieties, anticipatory anxiety is entirely paradoxical; it gets stronger with our attempts to avoid.

We think that we are going to reduce our feat, but in reality, anticipatory anxiety generates more anxiety. That’s the reason phobias keep living and thrive in minds.

Anticipatory anxiety disorder is a widespread anxiety disorder. Such a disorder has a significant impact on health. Many people suffer from such a disorder and cause damage to their lives and work, and after the occurrence of such a disorder.

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Anticipatory Anxiety might be very challenging for people as it can last months before an event. People focus on terrible future predictions that may or may not ever happen.

Anticipatory anxiety by and large not seen as a disorder, but rather a sign of other anxiety-related disorder like panic disorder, generalized anxiety, social phobia, and panic disorder.

“Worry doesn’t eliminate the pain of tomorrow, but it does eliminate the strength of today”
-Corrie Ten Boom-

Is Anticipatory Anxiety Normal?

The answer to this question is “It depends.” Every human being must have experienced some anticipatory anxiety throughout their life (i.e., before a speech, first date or job interview) this is normal.

The normal becomes abnormal when anticipatory anxiety happens frequently. Mostly before events that are not considered impact or essential, then the condition is problematic and leading to panic disorder.

Anticipation anxiety with panic disorder can result in the panic attack in future. Anticipatory anxiety tries to predict the future and makes it worse.

It assists us to organize our self against any credible or real threat, and It is not all bad; It gives information about any future possible dangers. Alternatively, anticipatory anxiety attempt to predict the magnitude of a future event.

It might be advantageous on some occasions, and help to protect us. But other time make our life journey miserable.

For example, if envision that you could have an accident, then it is expected you would take protective measures and fasten the seat belt. This type of behavior is typical, could be helpful to save a life in case of an accident.

On the contrary, if you instead of taking a preventive measure, you decide to stay home. You would visit home that would flourish your anxiety further.

The intensity of the anguish is proportional to the meaning that the situation has for the affected person
-Karen Horney-

Anticipatory Anxiety Symptoms

Mental anxiety

It reveals itself, as a constant worry about a dangerous or unfortunate event that may occur in the future and is unpredictable.

Some patients are not aware of some of the objects or content that he is concerned about but are just a fearful and fearful intense inner experience called free-floating anxiety.

Some patients may be worried about what may happen in real life, but the level of fear, anxiety, and annoyance is not commensurate with reality and is called prospective anxiety.

Patients often have a panicked sense of preconception, distraught and worried all day long, restless and restless, and they seem to have a sense of disaster.


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Anticipatory Anxiety

Physical anxiety

It manifests as movement unrest and a variety of somatic symptoms.

Uneasy movement: If you are clamoring, you can’t sit still and keep walking around, and there are no purposeful little movements. Some patients exhibit tremors or tremor of the tongue, lips, or finger muscles.

Somatic symptoms: Post-stern compression is a common manifestation of anxiety, often accompanied by shortness of breath.

Muscle tension: Uncomfortable tension characterizes it in one or more groups of muscles on a subjective basis.

In severe cases, muscle soreness is more common in the chest, neck, and shoulder and back muscles. Tension headaches are also frequent.

Autonomic dysfunction: manifested as tachycardia, flushing or pale skin, dry mouth, constipation or diarrhea, sweating, frequent urination and other symptoms

Increased awakening

Excessive alertness, sensitive to external stimuli, prone to startle response; hard to sleep, easy to wake up in sleep; emotional irritability, hyper-synesthesia, and some patients can feel their muscles Beats, blood vessels, gastrointestinal motility, etc.

Other symptoms

Patients with generalized anxiety disorder often have symptoms such as fatigue, depression, obsessive-compulsive, fearful, panic attacks, and disintegration of personality, but these symptoms are often not the main clinical aspects of the disease.

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