Anxiety is a mental health condition characterized by fear of some type of danger. Everybody experiences some degree of anxiety, which can be helpful. For example, having anxiety before a job interview will likely motivate you to prepare more thoroughly, hopefully leading to a better chance of getting the job. However, anxiety can be problematic when it’s disproportionate to the situation. CBT can be used to treat generalized anxiety disorder, and other more specific anxiety disorders below.  

The main characteristics of generalized anxiety disorder are excessive worrying and difficulty controlling worry. Additional symptoms may include feeling restless or on edge, being easily fatigued, irritability, muscle tension, and difficulties with sleep. 
Health anxiety is characterized by concern about having or developing a serious illness despite not having any symptoms or experiencing only mild physical symptoms. In response to the health concerns, people excessively check their symptoms, try to avoid experiencing symptoms, or make excessive medical appointments. 
Social anxiety disorder is characterized by a fear of social situations. The fear or anxiety is disproportionate to the actual level of threat, and the situation is either avoided completely or endured with intense fear or anxiety. 
Panic disorder is characterized by seemingly un-triggered, unexpected anxiety. People with panic disorder may experience a sudden upsurge of sensations, such as palpitations, sweating, trembling, shaking, shortness of breath, chest pain, nausea, dizziness, chills, and numbness.  
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) consists of intrusive and persistent thoughts, images, and urges. Compulsions are repetitive behaviors, mental acts, or rules that people engage in to temporarily eliminate these intrusive thoughts. They may involve activities like hand washing, checking, ordering, counting, or repeating words internally. 
How CBT Can Help

CBT therapists educate clients about their diagnosis and about CBT, help them set goals, and teach essential thinking and behavioral skills. CBT techniques for anxiety focus on helping people reduce their worrying, evaluating predictions about future disasters, and learning how to handle problems when they do arise. Mindfulness and relaxation strategies can help people disengage from worry and reduce physical symptoms of anxiety. 

To learn more about anxiety and how CBT can help, download our Coping with Anxiety pamphlet.

Finding a Therapist

Our clinician directory can help you find a competent and compassionate certified CBT therapist near you. 

If you are in crisis or in need of immediate assistance, please make use of the below resources or go to your nearest hospital emergency room. 

988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline: 988

Crisis Text Line: 741741