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What are the different types of anxiety disorders?

Celeste Robb-Nicholson
Internal Medicine
Following are the different types of anxiety disorders and their symptoms:
  • Generalized anxiety disorder -- Exaggerated worry about health, safety, money, and other aspects of daily life that lasts six months or more. Often accompanied by muscle pain, fatigue, headaches, nausea, breathlessness, and insomnia.
  • Phobias -- Irrational fear of specific things or situations, such as spiders (arachnophobia), being in crowds (agoraphobia), or being in enclosed spaces (claustrophobia).
  • Social anxiety disorder (social phobia) -- Overwhelming self-consciousness in ordinary social encounters, heightened by a sense of being watched and judged by others and a fear of embarrassment.
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) -- Reliving an intense physical or emotional threat or injury (for example, childhood abuse, combat, or an earthquake) in vivid dreams, flashbacks, or tormented memories. Other symptoms include difficulty sleeping or concentrating, angry outbursts, emotional withdrawal, and a heightened startle response.
  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) -- Obsessive thoughts, such as an irrational fear of contamination, accompanied by compulsive acts, such as repetitive hand washing, that are undertaken to alleviate the anxiety generated by the thoughts.
  • Panic disorder -- Recurrent episodes of unprovoked feelings of terror or impending doom, accompanied by rapid heartbeat, sweating, dizziness, or weakness.
Anxiety disorders are among the most common of the mental health disorders. Many people from all cultures worldwide suffer from one of the six primary anxiety disorders. We now know that nearly half of adults diagnosed with an anxiety disorder had symptoms of some type of psychiatric illness by age fifteen, making early diagnosis and prevention extremely critical. Anxiety disorders include:
  • generalized anxiety disorder (GAD)
  • panic disorder
  • obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
  • post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • social phobia (social anxiety disorder) and specific phobias
Katherine Lee
Social Work
Anxiety disorders include a wide range of disorders from the very specific, such as phobias, to generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), which is more pervasive and experienced as apprehension. Some of the more common anxiety disorders include panic disorder, social phobia, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), acute stress disorder, agoraphobia, anxiety due to a medical disorder, substance-induced disorder, GAD, and anxiety disorder NOS (Not Otherwise Specified).   
Anxiety disorders include:
- Panic disorder
- Agoraphobia
- Obsessive-compulsive disorder
- Acute and post-traumatic stress disorder
- Generalized anxiety disorder
- Social anxiety disorder (social phobia)
- Simple phobia

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.