Recognizing the Types of Anxiety Disorders in Adults and Children


People with anxiety disorders may find it difficult to carry out daily activities. Although similar, this disorder can be experienced in different forms in each person. Come on, get to know more about the various types of anxiety disorders through the following discussion. 

Types of anxiety disorders

Anxiety disorder is a mental disorder characterized by excessive anxiety or fear. In severe levels, this condition can even interfere with daily activities. 

Basically, this excessive anxiety is divided into several types. This depends on the trigger and what symptoms the sufferer feels. 

There are 11 types of anxiety disorders described in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th edition (DSM-5) published by the American Psychiatric Association.

The following is an explanation of the various types of anxiety disorders. 

1. Separation anxiety disorder

Separation anxiety disorder is one of the most common anxiety disorders in children. However, this condition can also be experienced by adults. 

This condition, also known as separation anxiety disorder, is characterized by a constant fear of being away from home or those closest to you, such as parents. 

Usually, people with anxiety disorder feel very depressed and find it difficult to go to school or work because of the separation they experience. 

2. Selective mute

Have you ever seen someone suddenly unable to speak in certain social situations? This condition may be caused by selective mutism. 

People with selective mutism will choose to remain silent when they have to talk to new people. However, he may not have a problem talking to his parents or close friends. 

Selective mutism is more common in children than adults. This condition usually appears in important stages of a child's life, such as preschool.

3. Agoraphobia 

Excessive fear and anxiety in situations where it is difficult to escape or cannot call for help is called agoraphobia.

Agoraphobia is often associated with anxiety disorders that arise when in crowded and open places, such as elevators, malls, cinemas, and public transportation. 

This condition makes sufferers feel insecure so they need relatives or friends to accompany them. In severe cases, he may not want to leave the house. 

4. Specific phobia

A person may show excessive fear of certain animals, objects, or situations. This type of anxiety disorder is called a specific phobia. 

Phobias can affect many aspecst of your life. The reason is, people who suffer from this mental illness will continue to try to avoid things that trigger their fear. 

Specific phobias usually develop during childhood or adolescene. This condition may worsen in adulthood if not treated properly. 

5. Social anxiety disorder

Social anxiety disorder can be described as a fear and worry that your behavior will not be accepted in various social situations.

You worry that what you are doing will embarrass yourself, offend others, or even make yourself the center of attention. 

This condition, which is also often called social phobia, will certainly make it difficult for you to build relationships with other people.

6. Panic disorder

Unusually, panic disorder can strike suddenly and exhibit physical symptoms that are often mistaken for a heart attack. 

Symptoms of panic disorder include intense fear, chest pain, irregular heartbeat (palpitations), shortness of breath, dizziness, and stomach pain. 

7. Generalized anxiety disorder

Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) is a type of anxiety disorder characterized by chronic anxiety , worry, and excessive tension. 

These symptoms can appear even when you are not facing a stressful situation. People with GAD can suddenly become very anxious when nothing is going on. 

This condition is certainly different from ordinary anxiety, for example when you are going to make a presentation in front of a crowd or are facing a job interview. 

8. Substance/drug-induced anxiety disorder

Substance/drug-induced anxiety disorder occurs after a person uses drugs, alcohol, or other addictive substances. 

Panic or severe anxiety can also result from exposure to toxic substances or withdrawal symptoms from addiction to alcohol, drugs, or certain substances. 

To diagnose this type of anxiety disorder, the person must not experience anxiety before starting to use the substance to be tested. 

9. Anxiety disorder due to certain medical conditions

Some conditions and illnesses can also cause sufferers to show extreme fear, anxiety, or panic. 

A number of these conditions, for example hyperthyroidism, heart disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, pneumonia, vitamin B12 deficiency, to seizure disorders. 

This condition occurs as a symptom of the medical condition. So, if you are worried about a medical condition that is experienced, it does not include this type of anxiety disorder. 

10. Other anxiety disorders

Other anxiety disorders can be diagnosed if you experience most but not all of the criteria for a particular type of anxiety disorder. 

For example, a person may be suspected of having GAD because of frequent feelings of significant anxiety and fear for several days. 

11. Unspecified anxiety disorder

Finally, an unspecified anxiety disorder is often diagnosed when you experience symptoms, but do not meet the full criteria for a specific anxiety disorder. 

It is also often used in hospitals or other places when doctors lack the information to make a complete diagnosis. 

If you experience symptoms of anxiety disorder, don't hesitate to consult a doctor or mental health professional, such as a psychologist or psychiatrist.

They will diagnose the type of anxiety disorder you have in order to determine the appropriate treatment steps.