High functioning anxiety affects 18% of the 40-million adults who must deal with an anxiety disorder at any given time. The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) reports that this type of anxiety brings struggle and stress into their daily lives impacting overall satisfaction with a busy lifestyle.
High Functioning Anxiety Described
Most adults typically viewed as being successful, an overachiever, or even as having an “A” personality, are prone to having high functioning anxiety. While the general public perceives the positive outcomes from having this type of anxiety, it fails to see the struggle involved in getting there, staying there, dealing with constant worry, or with keeping up the effort of presenting a false persona to the rest of the world.
High Functioning Anxiety Diagnosis
In speaking about anxiety disorders, the type, high functioning, is not a real medical diagnosis, but rather a term being used more and more by mental health professionals to describe actions, symptoms, and emotions. This type of anxiety may exhibit many features of an anxiety disorder without the criteria for an actual diagnosis – they may have symptoms but are able to function through the struggle without life disruption.
Common Symptoms of High Functioning Anxiety
Some of the common signs that you may be struggling through life with high functioning anxiety include:
- You are often told you are a Type A personality or a perfectionist.
- You may have unrealistic expectations of yourself along with a fear of not meeting them.
- You exhibit controlling patterns, habits, or strict routines
- You find your life constantly busy and packed with plans and tasks to accomplish
- You do not sleep well, tossing and turning throughout the night
- You find yourself with frequent complaints of aches or pains, feel like there is a knot in your stomach, or find yourself biting nails, tapping your foot or cracking your knuckles as a sign of suppressed anxiety
- You often keep your emotions bottled up, presenting a “false face” to others making it difficult for others to really know how you are feeling
- You have a fear of disappointing or letting others down, often talking negatively about yourself
- You cannot say “no” to the requests of others, often taking on more than you can realistically handle.
High Functioning Anxiety Psychiatrist
Even if the anxiety symptoms experienced are not interfering at work, home, or in social situations, they can still impact enjoyment and quality of life. Reducing the high functioning anxiety symptoms can end the struggle and lead to a more satisfying life all around. Call Dr. Hege for a confidential evaluation and determine the more effective treatment strategy for your needs.