When Does Anxiety Require Professional Intervention?

May 15, 2024
When Does Anxiety Require Professional Intervention?
If you’re among the nearly 6 million Americans plagued by anxiety, you needn’t suffer. Anxiety isn’t only common; it’s highly treatable. And with our telehealth service, you can get the help you need from the comfort of your home. Read on for more.

Anxiety is pervasive. It's nervousness before a job interview, unease in giving a presentation, or worry about an upcoming exam.

But when anxiety goes beyond these everyday nerves and becomes chronic or debilitating, it’s time to seek professional intervention.

Drew Pittman, PMHNP, has helped countless patients manage their anxiety and reclaim fulfilling lives via his virtual psychiatry practice, Sound Psychiatry and Wellness, serving patients in Colorado, Florida, Ohio, and Massachusetts.

Here, he breaks down what you need to know about anxiety and the help that awaits.

Recognizing the signs of severe anxiety

Anxiety disorders are more than just occasional nerves; they’re persistent, excessive, and can interfere with daily life. Recognizing the symptoms that indicate the need for professional intervention is key. 

Here are some signs to watch for:

Excessive worry

If you constantly worry about various aspects of your life, even when there's no apparent reason, it could be a sign of generalized anxiety disorder.

Physical symptoms

Anxiety can manifest physically with symptoms like heart palpitations, sweating, trembling, difficulty sleeping, and muscle tension. These physical sensations can be overwhelming and require medical attention.

Panic attacks

Sudden and intense episodes of fear or terror, often accompanied by chest pain, shortness of breath, and a sense of impending doom, may indicate panic disorder.


Avoiding places, situations, or activities because they trigger anxiety indicates various anxiety disorders, such as social anxiety disorder.

What causes anxiety?

Anxiety stems from factors that include genetics, brain chemistry, personality, and life experiences. It's not a sign of weakness or a character flaw. 

Often, a combination of factors contributes to anxiety disorders. For some, a traumatic event or a stressful life situation can trigger anxiety symptoms.

Anxiety is widespread

Anxiety disorders are among the most common mental health conditions. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately 19% of adults in the United States experienced an anxiety disorder in the previous year.

Treatment options

Drew treats generalized anxiety disorder using a conservative, patient-centered approach. Treatment may include one or more of the following: 

  • Psychotherapy
  • Relaxation techniques (e.g., meditation or yoga)
  • Lifestyle recommendations (focus on nutrition, exercise, sleep hygiene)
  • Antidepressants or anti-anxiety medication

Because Sound Psychiatry and Wellness is a telepsychiatry practice, Drew is unable to prescribe controlled substances, including stimulants and benzodiazepines.

Most patients who suffer from anxiety can reduce or eliminate symptoms, and many patients notice improvement after just a few sessions.

If you’re suffering from anxiety, don’t wait to seek help. Untreated anxiety can lead to additional mental and physical health problems. Contact Drew at Sound Psychiatry and Wellness and start feeling better.