Not Exactly The Same
At first glance, it may not be easy to see how anxiety and nervous breakdown are related. Let’s define each term so we can be sure we are on the same page. Anxiety refers to a series of conditions including obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), social anxiety, generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), phobias, panic attacks, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Nervous breakdown, though it is not used as a medical term, can be defined as an acute mental disorder that prevents a person from functioning at a normal level; furthermore, these breakdowns are often related to or result in anxiety and depression.
NOTE: Nothing in this article is meant to be medical advice, and should not be taken as such. You must always talk to a qualified medical professional about any health concerns you have, including anxiety and nervous breakdown.
Even though clinical anxiety may be caused by specific life events, the cause of it is frequently associated with neurology, biology, heredity, or body chemistry. On the other hand, a nervous breakdown is more sudden and the direct cause is typically more immediate and not associated with anything physiological. That being said, there are always exceptions, so don’t make any assumptions about your particular situation until you have received a professional opinion.
There are no hard and fast statistics on how many people have had a nervous breakdown, but chances are that the number is higher than you think. It used to be that people who admitted to having one would be put into an insane asylum (another term that has fell out of favor in recent years) to recuperate. The stigma attached to this meant that anxiety and nervous breakdown were not discussed openly. While many advances have been made, and people are more open than they used to be, there is still an unfair stigma attached to these common conditions.
Seeking treatment sounds easy, but the problem is the lingering stigma. However, you need to understand that health care providers will keep all of your information confidential, and furthermore, will treat you with respect. To put it in simple terms, if you think you need help, go get some help and don’t worry about what other people may think about it (hint: almost everybody thinks about themselves anyway).
If you have an ongoing anxiety problem, then your chances of having a nervous breakdown go up. Therefore, it makes sense that by treating the underlying anxiety your chances of having a breakdown will decrease. Cognitive therapy and medication are the two most common treatment options and can be quite effective. Be sure to have an honest and thorough discussion with your doctor so they can give you the best possible treatment.
Anxiety and nervous breakdown isn’t any fun, and even with treatment, it’s possible for breakdowns to happen. If this happens to you, you should take it seriously so it doesn’t turn into something worse. The main thing to remember is that there is help available for you.