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Is there a treatment for my anxiety that doesn't include medication?

answered 10:03 AM EST, Fri June 15, 2012
anonymous anonymous
I am very stressed and anxious. Sometimes when I am talking to someone I get the feeling like I am watching what is happening and not really the person that is actually participating in it. It is like I am separated into two, but not like I am hearing voices or anything like that .It is hard to explain but I hope you understand what I am trying to say. Is there some kind of counseling I could get so I could stop feeling this way? My parents were both alcoholics so I do not like to take drugs if I can avoid it.

Art Matthews Says...

The feeling you described is called "de-personalization" and occurs when you are in a heightened state of anxiety called the fight/flight response. Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy has been the standard recommended treatment for many years for people who wish to avoid talking medication for their anxiety. But you should know that there are medications you can take that are non-addictive and not habit forming such as beta-blockers and anti-depressants (SSRIs), although there has been some evidence that Paxil does have a "discontinuation effect."

Another option for you would be Eye-Movement Desensitization and Reprogramming or EMDR Therapy, which has been developed in the last 10 to 15 years. Neuroscientists are suggesting that having clients mimicking eye movements observed during REM Sleep Phase while processing distressing events can help desensitized the client to triggers to their anxiety, allowing them to have a more normalized reaction.

Look to your state/governmental regulatory agency to identify qualified professionals who are trained and certified in the type of therapy you choose and of course, learn more about CBT and EMDR on the web or through your local library.

Best of luck to you. Life is to be lived. Don't let your anxiety allow you to avoid your life one more minute.

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Page last updated Jun 15, 2012

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