A study done at Columbia University found that depression and related anxiety in children with households with incomes over $170,000 exceeded twice the national average. This was attributed to their so called high status. The research also showed that affluent children had high rates of eating disorders, drug usage and criminal activity.
Vjaya Manicavasager, Director of psychological services at Black Dog Instituue says that this could be ffrom the pressures that over achieving parents are putting on their children. Shy says,
‘If the parents are focused on outcomes, then the kids are going to feel that their needs aren’t being met. Some kids could withdraw into their shell and become depressed or anxious. Other kids would rebel against it.”
Another expert suggested that the absence of the parents due to having careers that are consuming can also attribute to the problem,
‘Affluent young people have access to alcohol, more access to illicit drugs and more time and knowledge about how to misuse the resources available to them.”
WHERE I DISAGREE
Of course I am not a medical professor or anything of the sort, however, as I see it, children of affluent households are more likely to get diagnosed then those of less affluent households. This alone can be the reason why the rates are twice as high. (For the record, households over $170,000 is not “Rich”). When a blue collar kid is depressed, his parents tell him or her, that’s life. There is no sitting down with someone and getting help. If noticed at all, they are told to suck it up. The instances of drug abuse and criminal activity with kids tend to be lower because they are close to the repercussions of such actions.
Blue collar families know all bout jail time. They know all about fines, lawyers, probation and parole. Therefore those who are committing the crime are more troubled then just looking for attention.
My only reason for playing devil’s advocate here is that just blindly reading about research and conclusions without knowing how the study was conducted, who was involved and how the data was interpreted could lead to in correct conclusions. Just like everything that you read on the internet it should be read with caution. The take away here is that anxiety and depression can affect you if you are rich or poor, a child or an adult. Don’t assume….ask and help.
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With the recent rise in caffeinated beverages psychologist are now acknowledging that caffeine is indeed a major contributor to feelings of anxiety, stress and panic disorders. The American Psychiatric Association has actually added three official caffeine related disorders: caffeine intoxication, caffeine related anxiety and caffeine related sleep disorders.
The fix for all three is simple right? Stop taking caffeine. Most of the time the person being diagnosed doesn’t realize that caffeine is the culprit. Some psychologist even attribute mild panic attacks as not panic attacks at all, but instead just the bodies reaction to the drug. Knowing that caffeine is more and more commonly being ingested, as part of a therapists treatment they will encourage you to ingest more caffeine but this time paying attention to the physical alterations your body is going through as the caffeine enters your system. With a heightened sense of awareness, the patients pounding heart and quickened pulse are now obvious when there are no other stimuli for panic.
Caffeine is by far the most widely used mood altering drug in the world, and most people don’t realize two things: One, that they are even ingesting the drug, and two, that it is indeed altering their mood.
When people are drinking tea, Coke or other soft drinks many times it’s for thirst quenching not caffeine consumption conversely Coffee and energy drinks are often purposely consumed solely for their caffeine. 80% of Americans drink caffeine and the last year coffee consumption increased by 6%. Not coincidentally anxiety disorders and panic attacks have also risen to become the most common mental illness in the United States.
If you are predisposed to anxiety and panic attacks then the consumption of a caffeinated beverage can lead to classic symptoms: sweaty palms, a pounding heart, and sometimes even ringing in the ears. This isn’t a panic attack, but if you are a sufferer of attacks you will easily misinterpret these symptoms as such and they will in turn develop into a full blown attack.
One psychologist tells his patients to cut out caffeine and then slowly ingest it again. Starting with one sip of soda and working their way up to a full cup of coffee and then a cup of coffee spiked with the popular stay awake drug No Doz. If after passing this test, of drinking the concoction without panic, the patient still does not go back to drinking coffee, then they might not actually be cured. Dr. Norman Schmidt a professor of psychology at Ohio State says that uses this method with his patients explains,
If patients ending treatment announce they still don’t intend to drink coffee, I know they haven’t overcome their unfounded fear. So there’s one more test they must pass. I tell them to down a triple espresso without triggering a panic attack. We call it the ‘Starbucks challenge.’
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I didn’t realize I had a real problem until I got to college. I thought actually it was normal until I read in a class about Anxiety disorders and panic attacks. If I knew back when the problem really started that it was actually a problem I could have reached out to someone.
Now that I know what it is, doesn’t mean that it’s stopped. I still make believe that all is ok but my insides are dying. Everything in life is extra stress. Thinking about if I’m going to fail a class, thinking about if I’m going to over eat again at lunch feel like crap and hate my body. Once I get to class instead of paying attention I keep wondering if I locked my car. Did I lock it? Maybe not. Even though I walked back to my car twice I still sit in class and wonder, did I really open it when I locked it. It’s like I’m trapped in my own mind.
I feel like no one takes this panic and anxiety thing seriously. If I mention it, everyone just shrugs it off. It’s nothing. Relax. You so Crazy.
But I am. Or a least I feel like it.
I know that I need help and it has helped me to even share my story. I’m going to get help and I encourage anyone who reads this that is scared to get help to take the plunge with me. We deserve to live as much of a life as the next person and for that reason I will stop being a prisoner to my own mind and reach out.
I feel better just posting this. Remember we are all stronger than we think and beautiful in our own way.