Living out his dream in the AFL playing for Carlton, Liam thought mental health wasn’t something he had to worry about.
His anxiety had other ideas.
A story about accepting help and learning to be comfortable in your own company.
This story was filmed on Wurundjeri and Bunurong Country, and we pay respect to the traditional owners of these lands.
Produced by Good Grief Productions.
About Beyond Blue
Established in October 2000, Beyond Blue initially focused on raising awareness of depression and reducing the associated stigma. As our knowledge and impact on people’s lives broadened, through research and community engagement, we added the key issue of anxiety conditions in 2011 and, more recently, suicide prevention to our core purpose.
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Treatments For Anxiety Disorders
Anxiety is your body’s natural reaction to a threat or stressful situation. It’s the body’s ‘fight-or-flight’ response and can be helpful in the short term, but when this ‘warning’ system gets triggered repeatedly or for long periods, it can become harmful and lead to an anxiety disorder.
An anxiety disorder can cause significant problems in your life and impact your wellbeing. It can make it difficult to focus at work, enjoy going to school or even sleep. It can also affect your relationships with friends and family.
There are different types of anxiety disorders and each one has its own symptoms, so it’s important to tell your doctor about your worries so they can diagnose you accurately. They will consider your reported symptoms, how long they last, and how they interfere with your daily life.
Some people find that medication is a good way to control their anxiety. This can include beta-blockers, which are often used to treat high blood pressure or other heart conditions, and antidepressants, which can help with a range of feelings, including worry and anxiety.
Psychotherapy can also be a very effective treatment for anxiety disorders. It can help you change the way you think and feel, and learn new coping skills. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is the most common form of therapy for anxiety disorders, and can teach you how to identify and change negative thinking patterns.
Other treatments can also be effective for treating anxiety symptoms, including stress management techniques such as meditation and mindfulness. These can help you unwind after a busy day and improve your ability to manage your anxiety.
Talking with others can also be a helpful treatment for anxiety. Whether it’s through support groups, self-help books or online forums, talking to someone else who understands can be a great help.
The treatment of anxiety can involve a mix of medication, psychotherapy and complementary health techniques. Be sure to discuss your preferences with your therapist so they can come up with the best approach for you.
Some people experience an anxiety disorder when they’re dealing with a serious medical condition, such as diabetes, menopause or heart disease. Your doctor may order tests to help rule out these conditions.
Experiencing a life-threatening illness or experiencing a traumatic event can also increase your risk of developing an anxiety disorder. It can also happen to people who have inherited a genetic predisposition for this condition.
Other factors that can affect your chances of developing an anxiety disorder include a chemical imbalance, environmental factors or severe or prolonged stress. These factors can all change the way your brain and body respond to the normal ‘fight-or-flight’ triggers, leading to an over-reaction that can turn into an anxiety disorder.
There are lots of different ways to manage your anxiety symptoms, and you can find out more about how to do this on the National Institute for Mental Health website. You can also get help from a GP, who will be able to assess your level of anxiety and suggest a suitable course of treatment.