My name's Lynne Drummond,

My name's Lynne Drummond,
I work as a consultant psychiatrist,

specialising in OCD, body dysmorphic
disorder and anxiety disorders.

Anxiety's a universal experience.

Everybody that lives on Earth
has had anxiety from time to time

and in different situations.

There's usually
two components to anxiety.

There's the tray anxiety which is
the background level of anxiety,

which can vary
from individual to individual.

So some people are naturally
very anxious about lots of things,

the rather cautious people,

and some people are much less anxious,
much more laid back.

Anxiety only becomes a problem

if it is much more severe

or frequent than the patient
is used to or can tolerate.

The symptoms of anxiety
can be split into two major components,

that's physical and emotional symptoms.

On the physical side it can affect
almost any part of the body

and any system of the body.

So the most common ones are shaking,
sweating, feeling your heart pound,

feeling difficulty in getting a breath
or breathing very rapidly,

muscle pains, headaches,
a feeling of tension, etcetera.

With the emotional symptoms,

they're often a feeling of impending
doom, a feeling of loss of control,

a fear that you're going to go mad
or do something inappropriate.

Anxiety is a symptom,
it's not a diagnosis in its own right,

and so anxiety
can accompany a whole range

of psychological conditions which can
range from depression, phobic disorder,

obsessive-compulsive disorders,
and other psychological problems.

I think the important thing
is that it's recognised.

For the treatment of anxiety
there's really two strands.

One is drug treatment and the other
is psychological treatment.

From the point of view
of psychological treatment,

these treatments
are actually time-limited

and work on the basis of trying to work
collaboratively with the sufferer.

In terms of drug treatments,

really, drug treatments are not
usually used for phobic disorder,

with the exception of social phobia.

But in obsessive-compulsive disorder,

we tend to use a set of drugs known as
serotonin reuptake inhibitors, or SRIs,

and with those drugs there is evidence
you may need to continue it for life,

and that actually
stopping the drug may cause relapse.

For that reason, I think it's often a
good idea to do the combination therapy

and then once you've done
the psychological therapy

to try and tail off the drug,

looking for any sign of relapse.

I think the most important thing, which
I'm always having to say to people,

is, whether you've got a mild anxiety
disorder or a very, very severe disorder

and no matter whether you've had it
for ten minutes or forty years,

actually anxiety is a very treatable
condition and you can improve.

I think that's the message that I'd
really like people to take on board,

to understand and to come forward,

because a lot of people suffer
in silence for far, far, far too long.