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Do you have constant worry or anxiety that has been present for a long time? You may be suffering from persistent anxiety, often a symptom of anxiety disorders. Here we explain what it means and how to get help.

What is constant anxiety?

Constant anxiety is a feeling of persistent worry, fear or nervousness that does not subside and may be present without a clear cause. It can negatively affect a person’s daily life, relationships and work.

Unlike momentary anxiety, which can occur in the face of specific events or challenges and then pass by itself, constant anxiety is characterised by a constant or recurring fear. It is a symptom of various anxiety disorders and can be helped in therapy.

In this article, we provide more information on what constant anxiety is, common questions and answers, and advice from our psychologists.

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Is constant anxiety a diagnosis?

Constant anxiety itself is not a specific diagnosis, but rather a symptom or description of an experience that can be part of various forms of anxiety problems. When anxiety is constant and affects a person’s daily functioning, it may indicate the presence of an anxiety disorder or other diagnosis. There are several diagnoses where constant anxiety can be a key symptom, including:

  • Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD): Characterised by chronic and excessive worry about many different things.
  • Panic disorder: Involves recurrent panic attacks, which are sudden waves of intense fear or discomfort.
  • Social phobia: A strong fear of social or performance situations, where the person fears being judged or being the centre of attention.
  • Specific phobias: Intense and irrational fear of specific objects, situations or activities.

What are the symptoms of constant anxiety?

Those who suffer from constant anxiety may feel anxious and very fearful about everyday events or situations. This is often accompanied by a feeling of restlessness or being on edge, which can make it difficult to relax.


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People with constant anxiety can also get tired easily, partly due to the focus that anxiety brings. They may have difficulty concentrating, feel irritable for no apparent reason, and experience muscle tension leading to physical discomfort or pain. Sleep problems are also common, including difficulty falling asleep, sleeping through the night, or waking up early in the morning.

People with constant anxiety may also experience:

  • Panic attacks, which are sudden intense waves of fear or discomfort.
  • Avoidance of certain situations or activities in an attempt to reduce anxiety.
  • Difficulty managing daily tasks and responsibilities due to anxiety.

Constant worry in the body

Physical symptoms are common in anxiety disorders but can cause a lot of worry for the sufferer. Physical symptoms can manifest as muscle tension, headaches, stomach problems, heart palpitations, breathing difficulties, sweating, fatigue, and sleep problems. These symptoms themselves can increase anxiety and create a vicious cycle. Effective treatment addresses both mental and physical aspects of the anxiety and helps break the patterns that are not helpful. At Lavendla, we make the difficult easier. Feel free to contact one of our psychologists or therapists today for a session.


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Can constant anxiety be treated?

It is possible to treat any anxiety problem and feel better. The main recommended treatment for anxiety problems is Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), which involves an individualised analysis of problem situations and thought patterns. It deals with feelings, thoughts and behaviours related to the anxiety, changing behaviours and thought patterns to reduce suffering and improve quality of life. Another treatment for anxiety disorders is Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), which focuses on values and how to live by them.

Treatment of mild to moderate anxiety is usually done in primary care, while more severe problems, where you are often more limited in your functioning, are treated at a specialist level. A treatment in primary care can involve about 4-10 sessions. Lavendla has several licensed psychologists and qualified therapists who can help.


12 common questions and answers about constant anxiety

What is constant anxiety?

Constant anxiety is a feeling of persistent worry, fear or nervousness that does not ease over time.

Is constant anxiety a diagnosis?

Constant anxiety can be part of other anxiety disorders such as GAD, social anxiety, or health anxiety. They come in different severity levels: mild, moderate, and severe. A professional therapist does a thorough assessment to determine which treatment might be most helpful.

What are the symptoms of constant anxiety?

Anxiety can involve worrying a lot about different things, tiredness, restlessness, having panic attacks, and avoiding things. The symptoms can be linked to social anxiety, generalised anxiety disorder (GAD), stress issues, and sleep problems. A thorough assessment of the symptoms is important.

Can constant anxiety be treated?

Any type of anxiety problem can be treated, no matter how much it affects your daily life.

I have trouble sleeping, is it constant anxiety?

Worry can lead to the development of sleep problems, but if these problems continue long enough, you can develop insomnia, which is the diagnosis for sleep problems.

How is constant anxiety treated?

Constant anxiety is treated with cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) and medication if necessary,

Can exercise affect anxiety problems?

Yes, any form of exercise can be helpful to feel better, but you may also need psychological treatment.

I worry about everything, why do I do that?

If you have generalised anxiety disorder (GAD), you often worry about different things, and help is available for that.

I feel anxious in my body, is it constant?

Worry and various physical symptoms such as heart palpitations, tension, and dizziness are common in anxiety problems. These can be helped in therapy.

I feel exhausted, is it anxiety?

Feeling tired can be part of an underlying anxiety disorder. For example, if you are feeling tense and stressed and have not had enough rest over a long period. If you have symptoms of fatigue syndrome, you should be assessed by a doctor first.

Where can I turn if I need help?

Through our site, you can book an initial session with a therapist or psychologist to describe your problems and start planning a treatment programme. We will help make the difficult easier.

Treating anxiety step-by-step

Here we take you through how treatment for anxiety could work. There is help available and here you can get an idea of the steps you can take:

Understanding and evaluation

The first step is to understand that you have an anxiety problem and that it is okay to seek help for it. A professional psychologist can help you assess your situation and understand your problem. You may also be asked to complete assessment forms.

Psychoeducation

You will learn about your worry and anxiety and how it affects you both physically and mentally. It is important to understand what is happening in your body, thoughts and behaviour when the feeling arises.

Tools for changing behaviours and patterns

You will work on identifying and changing patterns of thinking that are linked to your anxiety. Together with your therapist, you will explore situations, what triggers emotions and learn how to manage them. You will also be given homework to practice between sessions.

Follow up and evaluate progress

You will have support from your psychologist throughout the process. At the end of the treatment, you will also receive a plan to continue practicing and maintain your progress over time.

Feel free to book an initial session with one of our licensed psychologists or therapists to see how we can help you. We make the difficult easier.

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Written by dominic

Dominic is a Cape Town-based copywriter and editor with a background in psychology.