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Generalised Anxiety Issues in Modern Indian women on a steady rise!

14 Jan 2016

One may say that in modern times, woman’s life has changed and society has progressed and accepted the modern approach regarding women. Women are much more independent and in control of themselves now. Is that really true or are we just looking at the cream on the top?

Let us do a reality check. 49,237 women face domestic violence in their marital homes. Every day 1 woman faces torture in her marital relationship every 11 minutes.  Domestic violence constitutes 33.3% of the total crimes against women. A steep rise of 34.5% in domestic violence cases was witnessed between 1997-2002.

1 in every 2 women still faces domestic violence in any of its forms, be it physical, sexual, psychological and/or economic.

Woman's health is highly compromised because the average nutritional intake of woman is 1400 calories daily. The necessary requirement is approximately 2200 calories. Looks like we still have a long way to go.

Statistics apart, womankind is still struggling to find its place in the modern society. Needless to say, this incongruence is taking a toll on women mental health by and large.

In survey done by Reddy and Chandrashekhara,  all neurotic disorders(mostly comprising of anxiety disorders) were significantly high among females (32.2%) while males counted upto 9.7%. in India and Nandi et al (1977, 1980) reported that women from an urban background were the worst affected in terms of anxiety and depression. 

This high prevalence of anxiety and commonly generalized anxiety disorder may rise due to a lot of constant environmental factors:

1. Uncertainties about future,

2. Lack of independence work and home pressure,

3. Rising costs and unable to cope with the rising economy

4. Falling standard of living in terms of peace and security

5. Insecurity of aging parents,

6. Taking care of kids,

7. Pain in family life such as lack of support from husband, in laws or other family members

8. Expectations from family members which one is unable to fulfill

9. Feeling trapped in an unhappy marriage

10. A feeling of overall existential crisis (do you often find yourself asking, “What is my life worth exactly?”

Generalized anxiety disorder is a much simpler condition than it sounds. However, if unattended it may lead to much complicated and severe conditions. What looks like worrying over small things may lead to more severe psychological conditions like depression and even suicide. So, if you find yourself fretting too much, even over the simplest things, maybe you should act as soon as possible. Early help and invention might save you a lot of your and other’s time and energy and more importantly a lot of worrying. Participation of women in the workforce is only 13.9% in the urban sector and 29.9% in the rural sector.

Do you feel the following too?

  • Excessive, ongoing worry and tension
  • You yourself feel that you have an unrealistic view of problems
  • Restlessness or a feeling of being "edgy"
  • Irritability
  • Muscle tension
  • Headaches
  • Sweating
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Nausea
  • The need to go to the bathroom frequently
  • Tiredness
  • Trouble falling or staying asleep
  • Trembling
  • Being easily startled

If you’re feeling most of the above symptoms over a considerably long time and you or you’re the people around you feel these are causing a negative impact personal and professional lives then you really need to think about it.

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The management

The easiest route to checking your anxieties is getting professional help. Counselling and psychotherapies are extremely effective with these anxiety conditions. It only needs your effort, patience and time and it can save you a lifetime of worries and mental and physical pain.

How the counseling works?

It is a 3 step process:

  1. 1. Identifying your negative thoughts. Situations are usually perceived as more dangerous than they really are. You may feel and acknowledge that your thoughts are irrational, still identifying your own irrational, fearsome thoughts can be very difficult. You ask yourself what you were thinking when you started feeling anxious. Your therapist will help you with this step.
  2. Challenging your negative thoughts. In the second step, your therapist will question you about the evidence for your frightening thoughts, analyzing unhelpful beliefs, and testing out the reality of negative predictions. Strategies for challenging negative thoughts can be, weighing the pros and cons of worrying or avoiding the thing you fear, and determining the realistic chances that what you’re anxious about will actually happen.
  3. Replacing negative thoughts with realistic thoughts. Your therapist can help you come up with realistic, calming statements you can say to yourself when you’re facing or anticipating a situation that normally sends your anxiety levels soaring. Replace the negative thoughts with positive thoughts which are more accurate and positive.

A counselor or therapist guides and speeds up the above process and helps you make the best out of the present situation and helps in modifying it to suits your needs. Ultimately you get achieve mental wellbeing and happiness.

If you feel, you have been worrying too much and have been doing that for a really long time, do not spend more mental energy on these negative thoughts and take you first step towards your well being by contacting a counselor. Because that is the right thing to do

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Tags: #Anxiety #women