Have a question for our experts? This line is open until Friday, November 12th. Freida will then answer a few questions and we’ll post her answers right here and on the forums.
Q: How do I know when I need help to manage my anxiety?
A: Anxiety is typically defined as “a vague, unpleasant and diffuse sense of apprehension”. Common Symptoms include:
• Feeling apprehensive
• Feeling powerless
• Having a sense of impending danger or doom
• Increased heart rate
• Breathing rapidly
• Sweating and trembling
• Feeling fatigued
Anxiety is a very human feeling that is a part of normal life. Usually people get anxious before
pleasant events like first dates and weddings. People usually also get anxious about events such
as examinations and job interviews. A certain level of anxiety is beneficial and is that feeling that
causes us to study for an examination or prompts us to be careful when we are walking alone at
night in unfamiliar surroundings. Anxiety also alerts us to other dangers.
Anxiety can also be a persistent problem that interferes with your activities of daily living such
as parenting, working, going to school or maintaining relationships. When you experience this
type of persistent, chronic anxiety then it is time to seek help from a qualified mental health
It is important to seek help from a qualified mental health professional as there are a number
of specific anxiety disorders that have to be carefully diagnosed and the appropriate treatment
provided. Anxiety disorders can be successfully treated and are easier to treat if they are
You need help from a qualified mental health professional to manage your anxiety when:
• You are worrying too much and it is interfering with your every day functioning
• You are feeling depressed and/or are drinking too much or using drugs to feel better
• You think your anxiety is a part of a physical health problem
You need to seek emergency help from a qualified mental health professional, crisis provider or
the local emergency room to manage your anxiety when:
• You have suicidal thoughts or behaviors
Q: Why are women more likely to get depressed and what are the proven treatments?
A: Depression is a treatable illness that can occur in anyone for a variety of reasons regardless of their gender, race, ethnicity, religion or income. Major depression consists of certain symptoms, some of which must occur every day for at least two weeks:
• Persistent sad or empty feelings, a depressed mood
• Loss of interest or pleasure in activities that used to be enjoyable
• Weight loss without dieting attributed to loss of appetite or weight gain
• Difficulty sleeping or sleeping too much
• Easily agitated
• Feeling worthless or inappropriately guilty
• Poor concentration and difficulty making decisions
• Thinking about death or suicide
Facts about women and depression:
• Women experience depression at approximately twice the rate of men.
• Girls 14-18 years of age have consistently higher rates of depression than boys in this age group.
• It has been estimated that 12 million women in the United States experience clinical depression each year.
• About one in every eight women can expect to develop clinical depression during their lifetime.
• Depression occurs most frequently in women aged 25-44.
• Men are more likely than women to die by suicide, but women report attempting suicide twice as often as men.
• There is a strong relationship between eating disorders and depression in women.
• Approximately 10-15% of all new mothers get postpartum depression