Do you feel anxious or stressed when you’re away from your loved ones? If so, you’re not alone. Millions of adults around the world suffer from separation anxiety. While it’s perfectly normal to feel this way in certain situations, for some people it can be quite debilitating. In this blog post, we will discuss the causes and symptoms of separation anxiety in adults, as well as ways to overcome it.
What is Separation Anxiety?
Separation anxiety is a type of anxiety disorder that occurs when an individual experiences overwhelming fear and distress related to separation from loved ones or other people to whom they are attached. These feelings can be triggered by actual or anticipated separations, such as going to work, going to school, or traveling away from home.
People with separation anxiety may have difficulty being away from loved ones for even short periods of time. They may worry excessively about what could happen to their loved ones while they are separated. They may also have physical symptoms such as trouble sleeping, sweating, or heart palpitations when thinking about being apart from loved ones.
People with separation anxiety may go to great lengths to avoid being away from their loved ones, which can interfere with work, school, and other aspects of their life.
Symptoms of separation anxiety in adults
Symptoms of adult separation anxiety can be hard to identify, but they can have a significant impact on daily life. Some of the common signs include feeling overwhelmed with worry when separated from loved ones, nightmares or difficulty sleeping, difficulty concentrating or staying focused, becoming quickly agitated when separated from a loved one for short periods of time, and general feelings of insecurity or vulnerability.
It’s important to recognize these symptoms and get treatment if needed.
Symptoms of separation anxiety in adults – Difficulty sleeping
Sleep disturbances are one of the main symptoms of adult separation anxiety. People struggling with this condition may experience difficulty sleeping, insomnia, nightmares, or sleep deprivation. These sleep issues can cause further distress and impair day-to-day functioning. It’s important for those showing signs of adult separation anxiety to seek help from a mental health professional in order to develop strategies and techniques for managing their condition.
Symptoms of separation anxiety in adults – Intrusive thoughts about loved ones
These thoughts may be about the possibility of loss or harm coming to them when you aren’t with them, leading to feelings of guilt or fear. These intrusive thoughts can lead to panic attacks and prevent people from concentrating on everyday tasks. It’s important to seek help from a mental health professional if intrusive thoughts are causing problems in day-to-day functioning.
Symptoms of separation anxiety in adults – Excessive worry about loved ones’ safety
Another common symptom is excessive worry that something bad will happen to their loved ones when they are apart, leading to feelings of guilt or fear. This can lead to increased anxiety and cause difficulties concentrating on everyday tasks. It’s important to seek help from a mental health professional in order to develop strategies and techniques for managing symptoms of adult separation anxiety.
Symptoms of separation anxiety in adults – Difficulty concentrating
Excessive worry can lead to difficulty concentrating. This can interfere with their ability to focus on everyday tasks and regular activities. It’s important to seek help from a mental health professional in order to identify strategies and techniques for managing the symptoms of adult separation anxiety.
Symptoms of separation anxiety in adults – Irritability
If you suffer from separation anxiety you are likely to feel frustrated or easily annoyed when separated from your loved ones for an extended period of time. This can manifest itself in a variety of ways, such as snapping at others, difficulty calming down after an emotional outburst, or general feelings of agitation. It’s important to seek help from a mental health professional in order to identify strategies and techniques for managing the symptoms of adult separation anxiety.
Symptoms of separation anxiety in adults – Nausea or dizziness
People may find themselves feeling physically ill when separated from their loved ones for an extended period of time due to the emotional distress and worry that this type of anxiety can cause. This can make it difficult to think clearly and do everyday tasks, as well as put them at risk for further physical illnesses.
Symptoms of separation anxiety in adults – Shortness of breath
It is also common to hyperventilate when separated from your loved ones for an extended period of time due to the emotional distress and worry that this type of anxiety can cause. This can make it difficult to think clearly, feel comfortable in social situations, or do everyday tasks
How do adults develop separation anxiety?
There are several factors that may contribute to development of separation anxiety in adults, including genetics (it tends to run in families), major life changes or trauma (such as the death of a loved one), and certain personality traits (such as being shy or introverted). Additionally, people who have experienced abuse or neglect are more likely to develop separation anxiety disorder.
The main factors that contribute to the development of separation anxiety in adults include:
- A history of trauma or abuse
- Having a parent or caregiver who was also anxious or had separation anxiety
- Life transitions such as starting a new job, getting married, or having a baby
- Chronic health conditions
- Being exposed to stressful events such as natural disasters or terrorist attacks
COVID-19 has also led to increased feelings of separation anxiety for many people. With schools and businesses closed, people were spending more time at home and less time around other people. This has created more opportunities for anxiety and fear to develop.
Tips for Managing Separation Anxiety
Here are some tips for managing your separation anxiety:
Identify Your Triggers
The first step in overcoming separation anxiety disorder is to identify your triggers—that is, the people, places, or things that cause your anxiety. Once you know your triggers, you can start to develop a plan for how to deal with them. For example, if you find that you are particularly anxious when you are away from your partner, make sure to schedule regular check-ins throughout the day so you can feel connected and ease your worries.
Create a Support Network
Another important step in overcoming separation anxiety disorder is to create a support network—that is, a group of friends or family members who you can rely on for support when you’re feeling anxious. This support network can be invaluable in helping you overcome your anxiety. When you have someone to talk to who understands what you’re going through, it can make all the difference in the world.
Seek Professional Help
If your separation anxiety is starting to negatively impact your life in significant ways, it may be time to seek professional help. There is hope—separation anxiety is a treatable condition. Effective treatments for separation anxiety disorder include psychotherapy (a type of counselling), medication (such as antidepressants), and exposure therapy (a type of behavioural therapy that involves gradually exposing yourself to situations that trigger your symptoms). If you think you might be suffering from separation anxiety disorder, talk to your doctor—he or she can help you get the treatment you need so you can start living a happier, more fulfilling life.
Separation anxiety disorder is a serious condition that can cause a great deal of distress and disruption in one’s life. However, there are some techniques that can help you overcome the challenges posed by this disorder. By identifying your triggers, creating a support network, and seeking professional help if necessary, you can start to take back control of your life and live more normally despite suffering from this anxiety disorder.