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Signs, Withdrawal Symptoms & Treatment Options

Anxiety and Addiction

Substance use disorders (SUD) are profoundly opportunistic. They seize us where and when we are most vulnerable. This means that SUDs rarely exist on their own. Rather, dependency often manifests as just one component of a larger whole. In many cases, for example, persons who are experiencing substance addiction are also battling a mood disorder or other mental health challenges.

Anxiety disorders frequently co-occur with drug or alcohol dependency. Indeed, anxiety disorders often are the catalyst for drug and alcohol misuse. At the same time, substance abuse typically contributes to the development or worsening of anxiety. The result is the creation of a vicious cycle of anxiety and substance abuse, a cycle in which one threat feeds off of and exacerbates the other.

What Is Anxiety Disorder?

Anxiety in and of itself is not a bad thing. Far from it. In fact, anxiety is a protective mechanism. It’s evolution’s way of ensuring that we remain on alert and ever-ready to respond to sudden danger.

The problem, however, is that it’s profoundly difficult to manage this primitive mechanism, to mitigate the fight or flight response, and avoid hypervigilance when it’s not needed. This is particularly true for those who have a family history of anxiety disorders and have had a past history of trauma. 

For some, genetic predisposition, environment, and personal history can lead to significant changes in the structures and functioning of the brain. This can make you sense danger where it doesn’t exist, worry incessantly about catastrophes that never come, and subsist in a perpetual state of discomfort and unease.

It is this continuous state of dis-ease (disease) that often leads those experiencing an anxiety disorder to turn to drugs or alcohol to find even just a moment of calm and joy–no matter how false and fleeting those good feelings may be. Over time, however, the substances that once gave anxiety sufferers a moment of serenity become the very substances that propel the descent into ever-worsening anxiety.

Addressing the Addiction by Addressing the Anxiety

It’s estimated that more than 40 million adults in the United States alone experience some form of anxiety disorder, making anxiety the most prevalent form of mental illness in the country. Anxiety disorders come in many varieties, including Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD), Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD), obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Despite the many manifestations of anxiety disorder, what unites them is a significant risk both of developing major depressive disorder (MDD) and of developing Substance Abuse Disorder. Unfortunately, although anxiety disorders are pervasive and often debilitating, only around half of those affected ever seek treatment. 

Understanding Anxiety disorder

Signs and Symptoms of Anxiety Disorder

One of the greatest challenges of anxiety disorder is the difficulty in recognizing its signs. Often, what we misperceive as simple stress is, in fact, a sign of pathological and life-altering anxiety. When you have an anxiety disorder, you may experience a host of symptoms, many of which may seem to have little to do with anxiousness. 

 

When you have an anxiety disorder, you may experience a host of symptoms, many of which may seem to have little to do with anxiousness :

Freedom from Aderall Addiction

How Bayshore Can Help

At Bayshore, we recognize that you can’t expect or experience true recovery until you address the underlying issues that have given rise to or are exacerbating the addiction. This is why our multidisciplinary team at Bayshore is committed to providing personalized, evidence-based, whole-person care.

Bayshore’s team of caring professionals includes on-site medical and mental healthcare providers with expertise in the treatment of anxiety disorders and co-occurring addiction and anxiety. We are fully licensed and accredited and have been certified by the Joint Commission and LegitScript to provide pharmacological therapies for the treatment of mental health disorders, including anxiety disorders, as appropriate.

In addition, our on-site counselors are proud to offer a range of psychotherapeutic treatment options, including Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) for clients experiencing co-occurring anxiety disorders, including PTSD.

Likewise, in honor of our commitment to whole-person care, our highly specialized team of wellness experts offers education and training in behavior modification and cognitive change. This includes courses in yoga, art and music therapy, holistic medicine, nutrition, and meditation and mindfulness. Each of these is designed to add another tool to your life optimization toolbox, helping you to construct a lifestyle that supports your peace, serenity, and sobriety while freeing you from the thrall of addiction and anxiety.

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