Our Services

Anxiety Treatment

Nothing  diminishes anxiety faster than action. 

 

~Walter Anderson 

What is Anxiety?

Anxiety is a general term for several disorders that cause nervousness, fear, apprehension, and worrying, affecting how we feel and behave, while manifesting real physical symptoms. People often experience a general state of worry or fear before confronting something challenging such as a test, examination, recital, or interview. These feelings are easily justified and considered normal.

 

Anxiety is considered a problem when symptoms interfere with a person's ability to sleep or otherwise function. Generally speaking, problematic anxiety occurs on a regular basis and can be defined as a reaction that is disproportionate to the situational reality.

       

Generalized Anxiety Disorder
What is Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)?

GAD is characterized by excessive and uncontrollable worrying about daily life events. These worries can range to include potential negative future events, minor matters, loved ones becoming ill or dying, work or school issues, and world events, such as natural disasters.

What does psychotherapeutic treatment for Generalized Anxiety Disorder involve?

The most effective treatment for GAD is Cognitive Behavioural Therapy which works to identify maladaptive thinking patterns and replace them with more realistic ones. This is done in conjunction with the support of the therapeutic relationship.    

What are the symptoms of Generalized Anxiety Disorder?

Below is a link for an at-home symptom check list that can help you identify whether you are suffering from GAD. It is important to note, however, that this checklist is not a replacement for a mental health professional. Rather, it is to be used as a tool to provide potential information to help individuals take the appropriate first step in seeking therapeutic support.

Social Anxiety Disorder

 

What is Social Anxiety Disorder?

Individuals struggling with Social Anxiety Disorder have an intense fear of social and/or performance situations and an excessive concern about social embarrassment or humiliation.

 

What does psychotherapeutic treatment for Social Anxiety Disorder involve?

Typically, Social Anxiety treatment is based on Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, which include techniques such as Exposure Therapy, cognitive restructuring without exposure, exposure therapy with cognitive

restructuring, and social skills training. This is done in conjunction with the support of the therapeutic relationship.

What are the symptoms of Social Anxiety Disorder?

Below is a link for an at-home symptom check-list that can help you identify whether you may be suffering from Social Anxiety Disorder. It is important to note, however, that this checklist is not a replacement for a mental health professional. Rather, it is to be used as a tool to provide potential information to help you take the appropriate first step in seeking therapeutic support.

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

What is Obsessive Compulsive Disorder?

Individuals with this disorder have obsessions, or unwanted intrusive thoughts that make them anxious, and/or they engage in compulsions (repetitive behaviours or mental acts) in an attempt to reduce a feeling of anxiety. Some compulsions may include repeated hand-washing, checking,

tapping, or mental routines (such as counting backwards from 100). An example of an intrusive thought is "I might get sick and die from touching a bathroom door”.

What does psychotherapeutic treatment for Obsessive Compulsive Disorder involve?

The most effective form of treatment for Obsessive Compulsive Disorder is known as Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP) treatment. This involves exposure to the feared situations or thoughts and the prevention of rituals, whether physical or mental, which work together to maximize the

treatment response. This is all done in a safe and supportive environment and within a well-established therapeutic relationship.

What are the symptoms of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder? 

Below is a link for an at-home symptom check-list that can help you identify whether you may be suffering from obsessive compulsive disorder. It is important to note, however, that this checklist is not a replacement for a mental health professional. Rather, it is to be used as a tool to provide potential information to help you take the appropriate first step in seeking therapeutic support.

Panic Disorder

What is Panic Disorder?

Individuals with panic disorder experience unexpected and repeated panic attacks, followed by at least 1 month of worry about having additional attacks. They may also fear of something bad happening as a result of the panic attack, such as going crazy, losing control or dying.

What does psychotherapeutic treatment for Panic Disorder involve?

Typically there is three-pronged approach to treating Panic Disorder: Psychoeducation is introduced to learn about the body’s “fight-or-flight” response; Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is utilized to understand the distorted thoughts that accompany the panic attacks; and Relaxation training techniques.

What are the symptoms of Panic Disorder? 

Below is a link for an at-home symptom check-list that can help you identify whether you may be suffering from panic disorder. It is important to note, however, that this checklist is not a replacement for a mental health professional. Rather, it is to be used as a tool to provide potential information to help you take the appropriate first step in seeking therapeutic support.

Specific Phobias

What is specific phobia?

Individuals with this disorder experience unreasonable, persistent and excessive fears of an object or situation, which significantly interferes with life and is beyond voluntary control. This means having an extreme anxiety

response towards something that is not causing immediate danger. Some common phobias include fear of spiders, snakes, flying, heights, and injections.       

What does psychotherapeutic treatment for Specific Phobia involve?

Exposure Therapy is most often used to treat Specific Phobia. The client is gradually exposed to their feared situations repeatedly, until the situation no longer triggers the fear response. This can be done via “imaginal

exposure” or via “in vivo exposure” - confronting the feared situation in real life. Often, treatment plans combine the two techniques. Exposure is most effective when it is done frequently and lasts long enough for the fear

to decrease. Research has shown that even 1-2 session can produce lasting effects.

What are the symptoms of Specific Phobias? 

Below is a link for an at-home symptom check-list that can help you identify whether you may be suffering from a specific phobia. It is important to note, however, that this checklist is not a replacement for a mental health professional. Rather, it is to be used as a tool to provide potential information to help you take the appropriate first step in seeking therapeutic support.

Helping Individuals, Couples and Families Feel and Be Their Best

Abma Counselling Services has been providing counselling services in Niagara since 2008. What began as a solo practice by Steve Abma has grown into a group practice of six experienced therapists providing treatment for a wide variety of issues, including depression, anxiety, ADD, relationships, marriage, addictions & stress. We are a team of dedicated professionals, passionate about helping individuals, couples and families feel and be their best.  Serving Niagara Falls, St. Catharines, St. David's, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Virgil, Fort Erie, Ridgeway, Beamsville, Jordan, Vineland, Grimsby, Thorold and Welland.

​© Steve Abma. Published by Steve Abma.