Tulsa Anxiety Counseling
Anxiety can feel impossible to handle. It can make you feel alone and leave you embarrassed to engage in things you typically enjoy doing. Struggling with an anxiety disorder in particular can lead to long stretches of anxiety with increasing intensity.
Overall, anxiety typically causes people to need to be in control and afraid of situations where they can’t exercise control or predict important outcomes. Another typical experience when dealing with anxiety is irrational thoughts or beliefs. While you might know that that your thoughts aren’t rational, they still feel real in the moment. This relates to a strong urge to avoid anxiety triggers (i.e., social situations, certain environments, etc.), feeling a sense of impending doom or danger, and living in a constant state of worry.
While a need for control and irrational thoughts/beliefs are happening psychologically, there are also physiological symptoms that surface when experiencing anxiety. Some of these physiological symptoms might include:
Having an increased heart rate
Breathing rapidly (hyperventilation)
Feeling weak or tired
Having trouble sleeping
Experiencing gastrointestinal (GI) problems
Both the psychological and physiological manifestations come together to make anxiety very difficult to manage and feel impossible to escape.
Although anxiety is intense and typically prevents us from engaging with people and our environment the way that we want to, it is the way that our body and brain have learned to cope. The irrational thoughts and beliefs that are driving the anxious response are ways that our brain has learned to adapt, although currently in a counterproductive way.
One of the ways that therapy helps to alleviate anxiety is to identify negative thoughts and beliefs and then work to replace them with healthy, rational thoughts. This happens through an iterative process where you and your therapist work to identify anxiety triggers and replace the negative thoughts and beliefs you have in response to that trigger. This helps to “re-wire your brain” and prevent it from eliciting an anxious physiological response.
Another way that therapy helps is through resolving past hurts and traumas. A lot of the time, anxiety triggers are complex and rooted in previous hurtful experiences that you might not have resolved. Even though you have temporally moved past those experiences, your brain hasn’t forgotten. Therapy helps you through the healing process.
These are just a few ways that therapy can help. Other therapy treatments that you and your therapist might use include boundary setting, gaining insight, empowerment, desensitization, mindfulness, meditation, building self-care routines, etc.
In addition to therapy, medication can be used to aid in treating anxiety. The most effective forms of anxiety treatment are typically a combination of therapy and medication. If you and your therapist decide that medication might be needed, your therapist will give you referrals to a psychiatrist to discuss next steps.
Do I have to take medication?
Medication is not the right fit for everyone experiencing anxiety. Sometimes medication might be recommended by your therapist at the beginning of therapy to provide short-term relief and then discontinued later in the counseling process. Regardless, medication is not required and therapy will remain an effective treatment.
I’m afraid my therapist will think that I’m crazy. Should I be worried?
30 % of adults will experience an anxiety disorder at some point in their lives, making anxiety a common issue that surfaces in a counseling setting. Therapists are highly trained to address and treat anxiety, while making you feel comfortable and understood. Therapy is a judge-free zone.
I have dealt with anxiety my whole life, what makes you think that you can help?
We use evidence-based practices that have been proven to reduce anxiety and have seen numerous clients find freedom and relief from their anxiety through the therapy process. Our goal is to provide the highest quality evidence-based therapy and we strive to remain up to date on the most recent therapy treatment for anxiety.
Begin Anxiety Counseling in Tulsa
If you feel like you could benefit from anxiety counseling, please contact us. We are also glad to answer any questions you may have about the counseling process. If you have questions, please send us an email using the email at the bottom of the page. We want to make sure all of our clients find the right fit for them. If we are not the right fit, then we are happy to make referrals.