Coping with Anxiety? Help is Available

posted by Dr. Sergio Plucker Billups on Thursday, August 11, 2022

Your palms are sweaty, you can hear your heart pounding in your ears, and you have that sinking feeling in your stomach that things just aren’t going to go right. You’re experiencing anxiety.

Anxiety is a common experience that is felt by each of us at many times throughout our lives. We’re anticipating an adverse event is going to happen, regarding of the true likelihood of that event occurring.

Though some people can manage such anxious moments, for others anxiety can become hyperactive, meaning it’s excessive, out of proportion to the anticipated event, chronic, or a combination of those. At times anxiety can be debilitating, causing people to avoid situations and can lead to other health issues due to the chronic distress. Such high levels of anxiety can cause relationship issues with family, friends and colleagues. Also, it potentially could lead to substance abuse.

When anxiety becomes overwhelming and hyperactive, a mental health professional may diagnose an individual with an Anxiety Disorder.

Symptoms of an Anxiety Disorder can include:

  • Feeling on high alert or on edge
  • Excessive avoidance of activities that cause anxiety, such as socialization
  • Persistent worried thoughts about anything or everything
  • Irritability
  • Muscle tension
  • Poor sleep
  • Fatigue
  • Physical symptoms like rapid heart rate, chest pain, quick breathing, sweating, or tremulousness
  • Many other disturbances in individual and interpersonal functioning

 The good news is anxiety disorders are not only common, they’re also very treatable with the help of therapy and/or medications. Unfortunately, they often go undiagnosed due to lack of awareness, difficulty asking for help, and the lack of or limited mental health resources. When you suffer from anxiety, you often avoid new experiences. However, summoning up the courage to reach out and seek help for your symptoms rather than ignoring them is the first step toward improvement. My hope is that by understanding that such feelings are very common, you’ll realize you’re not alone. And, I want to assure you that help is available.

Locally, there are services available in our community that treat anxiety disorders. Our behavioral health professionals team at Spencer Hospital provides both inpatient and outpatient services. Our outpatient care is provided through Avera Medical Group Spencer. In addition to myself, our team includes two psychiatric mental health nurse practitioners to help assess each individual’s personalized needs.

In addition to our services, several local counseling agencies are available locally. Also, state and national services offer 24-hour helplines to call for assistance. The national new mental health hotline for someone experiencing a crisis is now available by dialing 988. As always, dial 911 in an emergency situation.

If you suffer from chronic anxiety, I urge you to contact us to seek our professional assistance. For outpatient services through Avera Medical Group Spencer, please call (712) 264-6315. We’re eager to help.

  1. behavioral health

About The Author

Dr. Sergio Plucker Billups

Dr. Sergio Plucker Billups serves as the Medical Director of Psychiatry at Spencer Hospital. Dr. Plucker Billups graduated from the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health. While completing his residency in psychiatry at the University of South Dakota, he served as chief resi ... read more