Anxiety Disorder Is as Common and Debilitating as Depression
WebMD News Archive
A psychiatrist who spoke with WebMD about the study says she is not
surprised by the findings that anxiety causes significant problems with work
and social activities. "As clinicians we focus less on the anxiety
disorders in people than on depressive disorders," says Mae Sokol, MD, of
Menninger psychiatric hospital in Topeka, KS. "We need this kind of data
because we can't just go by clinical judgments alone, so in that sense it's a
very important study."
Sokol says the evaluation of social functioning is an important contribution
to the literature. "Some people may not meet criteria for a major diagnosis
as far as their psychological functioning from what you can get from them
talking about how they are doing," she tells WebMD. "But they may have
terrible problems with social interactions, and they need help, and these are
important things to look at and evaluate."
But Sokol says it is also important for patients who suffer from anxiety to
understand that there is help available and that anxiety is highly treatable
with medication and behavioral therapy.
- Suffering from anxiety can negatively impact work and social life just as
much as depression does.
- Having both diagnoses results in an even greater degree of problems than
either one alone.
- Doctors tend to focus on depression over anxiety, but there are available
treatments for anxiety.