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One of the most crippling aspects of today's life is
anxiety; feelings of fear or nervousness from stress. It has been difficult for
scientists to analyze exactly how anxiety-ridden one is; a large portion of the
scaling is based on what their patients tell them. Why is Anxiety so Harmful?
Having large of amounts of anxiety can cause significant
physical and mental problems. When one is anxious, dealing with stress becomes
extremely difficult, mostly because of nervousness about getting more stressed.
This doubling effect can create an unhealthy side effects, including:
-Lack of sleep
-Psychosomatic symptoms like back, shoulder, neck and muscle
-Immune system suppression
It's been hard for psychologists to truly analyze one's
level of anxiety; these feelings can shift in the level of severity frequently.
Recently scientists at Washington and Lee University have developed a new
method of measuring one's level of anxiety. The program, called the Attention
Control Capacity for Emotion (ACCE) requires a patient to sit facing a screen,
which shows either a neutral shape, or a face depicting an emotion.
are then asked to click a mouse as soon as they process the transition from the
screen of a shape to the face, or vice versa; the speed of the clicks is
recorded by the doctor who determines anxiety level from the reaction time. Although this program is still in testing phases, it offers
another way to measure stress. Other methods include:
CUXOS (Clinically Useful Anxiety Outcome Scale)-This is a
questionnaire that asks a person specific situations which are then rated 0-4
(0 being no anxiety 4 meaning lots of anxiety). Eventually, the numbers of all
the questions are added together to determine the "anxiety number."
Interaction Observation-This method analyzes the social or
physical environment of a patient. The theory is that when placed in a
situation that is unfamiliar, anxiety can creep in, producing feelings of isolation
or depression. This method looks at changes in social circles, jobs, or living
Physical Analysis-In many cases, anxiety produces
psychosomatic symptoms, such as high blood pressure or perspiration. Doctors
can detect anxiety this way by attaching measuring tools to the body and
exposing a patient to certain stimuli. In theory, recognition of a
stress-causing image, sound, or smell can produce abnormal responses in the
This post is brought to you by Argosy University. Drawing
upon our more than 30-year history of granting degrees in professional
psychology, Argosy University has developed a curriculum that focuses on
interpersonal skills and practical experience alongside academic learning.
Because getting a degree is one thing. Succeeding, quite another.
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