These are the most common types of anxiety disorders.
Generalised anxiety disorder
People with generalised anxiety disorder worry much of the time about all sorts of everyday things – to do with work, finances, health or family for example. They worry something terrible might happen, even if there's no real reason to think so.
They can't stop feeling anxious, even though it's affecting their life.
For example, they might not want to drive a car because they're worried about having an accident.
They often ask for reassurance that the terrible things they fear won't happen.
People with generalised anxiety disorder don't sleep well, and often complain of headaches and muscle tension in their necks and shoulders.
Social anxiety disorder
Someone with social anxiety disorder worries about other people noticing their anxiety and thinking less of them because of it.
Being the centre of attention is a problem for them.
For example, they might feel anxious about:
- meeting new people
- speaking or performing in front of other people
- going to meetings or parties
- catching public transport
- being watched while eating or drinking.
They worry that they might do something embarrassing, or that other people might notice that they're anxious. They will avoid situations where other people could notice their anxiety.
Normal shyness isn't social anxiety disorder.