One in three Australian women will experience some form of anxiety in their lifetime and new research has revealed just how long it takes for sufferers to get the help they need.
According to a survey conducted by YouGov Galaxy, it takes approximately 8.2 years for someone living with anxiety to seek professional help.
Dr Jeannie Yoo, GP and medical adviser at NPS MedicineWise, says many Australians aren't recognising that the symptoms they experience are the result of an anxiety disorder.
“Once they do, it can be a great relief for them to understand that the way they feel is due to a treatable condition, and that this condition is not uncommon,” says Dr Yoo.
These symptoms are physical, psychological and behavioural, and include:
- Panic attacks
- Hot and cold flushes
- Racing heartbeat
- Tightening of the chest
- Consistent and excessive feelings of fear, worry and catastrophising
- Avoidance of situations that exacerbate anxiety
Approximately 40% of Aussie women have been professionally diagnosed with depression or anxiety, according to findings from the Jean Hailes Women’s Health 2017 survey.
Their study of over 10,000 Australian women found that the younger generation were most vulnerable, with 18 to 35 year old the most anxious age group of women in the country.
Further, nearly half of women reported that on several days they “worry excessively about different things."
Two-thirds of participants in the YouGov study thought one-on-one counselling or psychological treatments were effective while only 13 per cent saw online treatment as a viable option for anxiety sufferers.
“Clinical studies have shown that online treatment programs can be just as effective as face-to-face treatment,” Dr Yoo says. “Online treatments may be an accessible option for some people, and many of these programs are available for free.”
“It is important for people to remember that there are effective treatments for anxiety,” adds Dr Yoo. “Seeking help from your doctor is an important first step in feeling better.”
If you are worried about yourself or someone in your care, the best thing you can do is talk to someone.
You can contact:
Beyond Blue 1300 22 4636
Lifeline 13 11 14
SANE Australia 1800 187 263
This article originally appeared on Men's Health