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Heart Palpitations





The Symptoms of Anxiety and Anxiety Disorders

We all experience anxiety. It is there to protect us from getting hurt and it does this through a series of mind and body reflexes and reactions known as the fight-or-flight response. Changes in our heartbeat, breathing and nervous system associated with this response are responsible for a multitude of anxiety symptoms.


Anxiety Symptoms

The following list is an example of some of the symptoms associated with anxiety. They involve our body, mind and behaviour.

Physical Symptoms:

point  Palpitations (Rapid / strong / irregular heartbeat).
point  Fast and shallow breathing.
point  Trembling and shaking.
point  Legs feel like jelly.
point  Excessive sweating.
point  Blushing.
point  Dry throat and difficulty swallowing.
point  Dizziness and feeling light-headed.
point  Tightness across the chest.
point  Nausea.
point  Needing the toilet.
point  Generally feeling 'on-edge'.     whygo

Anxiety symptoms and preparing for action

Other problems associated with physical anxiety symptoms may include: constant headaches, insomnia, and various muscle pains due to increased and prolonged tension.

Mental Symptoms:

point  Feelings of apprehension and dread.
point  Being 'mildly scared' for much of the time.
point  Trouble concentrating.
point  Starting to worry more.
point  Irritability.
point  Anger.
point  Increased self-consciousness.
point  Thoughts about illness.
point  Restlessness.

Anxiety-Driven Behaviours:

Anxious behaviour depends on personal beliefs about what is stressful and vary from person to person. However there are some common ones which include:-

point  Making excuses to avoid going out or doing things.
point  Hurrying out of places or situations where we feel anxious.
point  Only going to quiet places where there aren't many people.
point  Not saying anything in front of others.
point  Sitting near doors and exits or at the back.
point  Walking to avoid buses; crossing the street to avoid people.
point  Having a drink or taking a tablet before doing something stressful.


Over time, increased anxiety can lead to a number of serious problems and disorders if it is not resolved.

Symptoms Associated with Anxiety Disorders

The symptoms of anxiety disorders can involve physical illness, debilitating behavioural problems and self-defeating psychological symptoms.

blue button  Physical Problems Due to Long-Term Anxiety.

These can include:-

point  Headaches.
point  Digestion problems.
point  Bowel problems.
point  Allergic reactions.
point  Constant fatigue.
point  Persistent colds and flu.
point  Skin problems.

Many of the above may be due, in part, to the suppression of the body's immune system by chemicals released into the bloodstream when anxious.
(Please note that any recurring physical symptoms such as pains or function problems (eg. digestion, bowel) need to be checked out by a medical doctor as they could be the signs of underlying physical disease).

blue button  Behavioural Problems Associated with Anxiety Disorders.

These define the disorder and include:-

point Extreme anxiety and panic around other people.
Having to do things in front of others can cause us to become panic-stricken.
(The main symptom seen in Social phobia / social anxiety disorder).

point Excessive Worrying
Persistant and uncontrollable worrying about people / events / situations.
(GAD, Generalized Anxiety Disorder).

point Avoidance behaviour
Avoiding things and situations that make us feel afraid. (Phobias).

point Obsessions and compulsions
Here, uncontrollable, often horrible thoughts (obsessions) lead to behaviours we feel compelled to do (compulsions) to try and relieve the anxiety over the thoughts. (OCD, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder).

point Panicking
Frequent attacks of panic that seem to come 'out of the blue'. (Panic Disorder).

point Hypochondria
Constantly visiting the doctor. Where every ache and pain becomes associated with being a serious illness.

point Depression
Often involves feelings of helplessness and hopelessness, and the belief that events are beyond our control and everything we try to do will fail.

point Sexual problems
Fears over losing control and being judged on performance can maintain these problems.

point Others include:- Aggression, sleep disorders and eating disorders.

blue button  Psychological Symptoms Associated with Anxiety Disorders.

These can be seen across the whole range of anxiety disorders, and can involve:-

point Perfectionism
Needing to be the strongest, the most beautiful, the cleverest, the most handsome, have the best body, to do the best, to be the best etc.

point Constantly making comparisons
Always comparing ourselves with others and coming up short.

point Excessive self-consciousness
Constantly watching ourselves.

point Child-like thoughts and behaviours
Desperately needing the love and approval of parents and others.

point Fantasising
Common fantasies include: 'one day being rich and famous or great, loved by all'.

point Excessive Tidiness
This represents attempts to bring form and order to our world, to gain a sense of being in control.

point Symmetry
Here, what is done by (happens to) one side of the body must be done by (happen to) the other side. This is also related to order and control.

point Ending sentences with questions
We do this to shift the attention away from us to the other person.

point Mild paranoia
Involves constant feelings of 'being picked on' and that 'others are treated better'.

point Obsessed with body image
Believing our body, or parts of it, are 'not good enough'.

point Poor posture
Standing shoulders down, feet inwards and arms in front of body, trying to be small, almost apologetic for being there.

point Others include:-
Persistent negative thoughts and images, constantly looking back for reasons and answers, and feelings of having no control over our mind or body.

A diagnosis of an anxiety disorder often refers to the main set of symptoms. Yet many people experience a whole range of symptoms associated with various anxiety disorders, adding weight to the belief that these problems are all related.




Free Anxiety Ebook

More Resources:


Anxiety Disorders Book
Kindle Anxiety Book
Anxiety Self-Help


Help For:
Eating Disorders
Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
Panic Disorder
Social Anxiety Disorder
(Social Phobia)



The symptoms of anxiety problems and disorders can feel too powerful to deal with. But when we know what is really happening with these problems it is possible to stop them completely and permanently.

The next section gives some insight into what it takes.

››  The Answer      






 blue button  Help for Anxiety Symptoms

To get anxious in certain situations is normal, everyone does. And most people even experience increased anxiety frequently. Things like tests, interviews, public speaking, first dates and competetive sports can make anyone pretty anxious.

But for some people things change...

Quietly, anxiety grows stronger and anxiety symptoms appear for no apparent reason.

Why does this happen?  And what is the best way to deal with it?

››  How to Deal with Anxiety Symptoms      








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