Types of Treatment
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), works effectively by helping individuals break the debilitating cycle of phobic thought patterns. CBT helps patients identify and then change negative thoughts and obsessions that cause them a great deal of distress. CBT exercises are prescribed that help decrease distorted thinking and irrational beliefs that may be fueling fears and exacerbating the anxiety. Patients are also taught to shift their focus to being more of an observer of their symptoms, instead of a victim. These exercises and many others are some of the most effective tools used to reduce anxiety symptoms and help stabilize individuals in early recovery.
Systematic Desensitization is the process of gradually desensitizing patients to feared situations via “en vivo” exposure. In the exposure, the brain then begins to habituate to the fear and the previous automatic reactivity to the feared situation is reduced. This technique is also known as Exposure Therapy. This process helps to break the avoidance behavior cycle and the ritualistic/compulsive behavior cycles that severely impair people’s lives. Exposure Therapy also helps to break the connection between negative behaviors and the reduction in anxiety that follows.
There are many types of medications that work very effectively for anxiety disorders. Some individuals will need continued medication to stabilize them and return to normal life. If the anxiety is so acute that work and relationships are severely impaired and life in general cannot be lived adequately, then medications may be prescribed by a psychiatrist for symptom relief. The Anxiety and Panic Disorder Center of Los Angeles is associated with several reputable psychiatrists and medical doctors in the area that specialize in prescribing medication for anxiety disorders.
Anti-depressants such as, Paxil, Zoloft, Lexapro, Celexa, Effexor, are very common drugs that are often prescribed for the treatment of anxiety disorders, as well as the benzodiazepene medications that are taken “as needed” such as, Klonopin, Xanax, Ativan.