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Understanding Stress and Anxiety Disorders

December 3rd, 2023

In our fast-paced and ever-evolving world, stress and anxiety disorders have become increasingly prevalent. The complexities of modern society have brought about higher levels of stress, leading to a greater need for understanding and support. In this blog post, we dive into the significance of mental health conditions and the importance of seeking help and information.

Have you ever noticed how, as the years and decades roll out, life seems to become more complex and stressful even though the technology we have today should be making everything easier and not more difficult? It’s a weird paradox, which can be explained with the influx of information that our brains are required to handle on a daily basis and the big number of small (and big) decisions we need to make all the time. We have so much micromanagement to do that it ends up exhausting us mentally and emotionally to the point where stress starts setting in and making us feel more miserable. 

Another reason for this is that society, as a whole, has become a lot more complex and nuanced compared to a couple of decades ago. Again, the end result is high levels of stress that most people experience each day, with little to no periods of respite. And while having a stress response is necessary when it comes to handling a particularly difficult situation, we are not supposed to feel stressed over long periods of time, because this could lead to a variety of mental health issues. No wonder we hear about conditions such as depression or anxiety disorders a lot more often than we did some twenty years ago - it’s because there are so many people experiencing such them in the current day and age.

The misunderstood nature of mental health conditions

Despite how common they are today, these conditions are still often overlooked or misunderstood. On one hand, many still disregard them as minor inconveniences, that aren’t worth much attention, and that anyone who needs help with such a condition is simply entitled and high-maintenance. 

On the other side of the coin, there are more and more people who are eager to self-diagnose with a particular mental disorder while in reality there’s nothing wrong with them, and they’ve just had a bad day or week. 

In either case, the ones suffering the most are the people who truly have some kind of mental health condition. If you think you, or someone close to you, might be among those people, it’s very important to understand these next two things: The first is that seeking help is not only okay - it’s encouraged. The second one is that obtaining the right information concerning the issue will make it that much easier to deal with it. In the next lines, we’ll give a brief overview of some common mental health conditions to hopefully start you in the right direction. From there on, it’s up to you to take the next steps and find the help you (or someone you know) need. One possible approach is to read high-quality self-help literature, but know that this may not be for everyone. Another option that can work for many people is to enroll in a specialized course, such as a PTSD course or an anger management training, that focuses on the specific condition a person is struggling with. Joining a support group is also a very good way of receiving help, and so is having individual sessions with a therapist.

What are the most common mental health disorders people experience today?

There’s an entire catalog of mental disorders we can talk about in this post, but for now, we’ll focus only on the ones that are most commonly experienced, yet also often overlooked by society.


OCD or Obsessive Compulsive Disorder is characterized by overwhelming intrusive thoughts that take over a person’s rational thinking and cause them to perform specific actions (also known as rituals) in order to appease these thoughts. For instance, someone might get intrusive thoughts that something bad is going to happen if they don’t check if they’ve locked the door when leaving home even though they clearly remember having turned the key. Most people have such thoughts, but once the thoughts become so intense that they start defining one’s personality and lifestyle, we are talking about OCD.

Panic disorder

Panic disorder causes a person to suddenly feel intense fear and panic without any conceivable reason. The real cause of these attacks can be a traumatic event in the past or large amounts of stress. These attacks are usually unpredictable and can be extremely debilitating and overwhelming to the point where the person experiencing them loses any ability to think rationally and starts experiencing physical symptoms such as difficulty breathing, rapid heart rate, profuse sweating, dizziness, etc.


Phobias are similar to the panic attacks, but here, the cause of the panic is known, and it is something present in the current moment. Common phobias include fear of heights (Acrophobia), fear of spiders (Arachnophobia), or fear of small enclosed spaces (Claustrophobia). Even if some phobias are objectively more justified (such as fear of heights), usually the fear and panic experienced by the person doesn’t match the object that’s causing it (some people with fear of heights can be scared of a height of less than 7 feet).


Hypochondria is characterized by intense fear of sickness, diseases, germs, etc. Hypochondriacs often feel like they have contracted some kind of disease even when there are no symptoms and if they notice something unusual with their body, they quickly jump to the conclusion that it is a sign that something’s wrong with them.

Generalized Anxiety Disorder

Finally, the Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) causes overall anxiety in people’s lives concerning anything from finances, employment, personal relationships, education, and more. It’s a catch-all disorder for when a person is experiencing high levels of anxiety without there being a singular object that triggers this anxiety. 


Of course, we all feel anxious from time to time about a wide variety of things, but if this anxiety becomes so strong as to make us miserable all the time and prevent us from leading a healthy and fulfilling life, then it is important to seek help and guidance. GAD and other mental disorders are real and valid problems and not simply a figment of an entitled person’s imagination, so addressing them and taking the necessary steps to overcome them is just as important to your well-being as eating healthy and being physically active. © · 2024