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When anxiety takes over

By Jocelyn Gavin-Lane

I have experienced some level of anxiety for as long as I can remember. In grade school, I recall being extra nervous at test time or when big events happened. That’s common, and in some instances, it can be classified as good anxiety. 

It wasn’t until my father’s death that my anxiety level changed drastically. Suddenly, things felt very different. When anxiety starts to interfere with daily living, professional help is warranted. 

Good anxiety helps us to be responsible. It prompts us to stop at red lights and watch for cars and motivates us to not procrastinate when we have a looming deadline.  

Bad anxiety can send you down a rabbit hole of worry. Once anxiety starts impacting your daily life, it’s time to seek help. Here are some ways anxiety may affect you:

  • Feeling restless, wound-up, or on-edge
  • Feeling easily fatigued
  • Difficulty concentrating; mind going blank
  • Irritability
  • Social isolation 
  • Muscle tension
  • Difficulty controlling feelings of worry
  • Sleep problems, such as difficulty falling or staying asleep, restlessness, or unsatisfying sleep
  • Constantly imagining the worst-case scenario

Anxiety disorders generally are treated with psychotherapy, medication or both. Many options are available for treating anxiety, and people should work with their doctors to choose the treatment that is best for them.

Jocelyn Gavin-Lane is owner of Premier Professional Counseling. Reach her at (228) 731-8800 or


Understanding anxiety

“Occasional bouts of anxiety are a normal and healthy response to certain fearful situations, like public speaking, asking for a raise, going to large social events or even waiting in line to ride a rollercoaster. If the anxiety feels overwhelming, erratic or severe, you may be suffering from a specific type of anxiety disorder.”

From Gulfport Behavioral Health System

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