How To Help My Anxious Spouse Get Help
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How To Help My Anxious Spouse Get Help

Having an anxious spouse can present unique challenges within a relationship. However, with understanding, empathy, and supportive actions, you can play a crucial role in assisting your partner in managing their anxiety and fostering a healthy and nurturing environment.




Table of Contents

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How Do I Know If My Spouse Has Anxiety?

How Does Anxiety Impact My Spouse Emotionally?

How Does Anxiety Impact My Spouse Physically?

What Medications Are Best For Anxiety?

What Is Anxiety Therapy? 






How Do I Know If My Spouse Has Anxiety?


Identifying anxiety in your spouse can be challenging, as everyone experiences anxiety differently. However, there are several signs and symptoms that may indicate the presence of anxiety. Here are some common signs to look out for:

    1. Excessive worry: Your spouse may exhibit excessive and persistent worry about various aspects of life, such as work, family, health, or finances. The worry may be disproportionate to the situation and difficult to control.
    2. Physical symptoms: Anxiety can manifest in physical symptoms such as restlessness, muscle tension, headaches, stomachaches, fatigue, difficulty sleeping, or changes in appetite.
    3. Irritability or agitation: Anxiety can make individuals more irritable, easily agitated, or prone to outbursts of anger. They may become easily overwhelmed by everyday stressors.
    4. Avoidance behavior: People with anxiety may try to avoid situations or activities that trigger their anxiety. They may become increasingly reluctant to participate in social events, attend crowded places, or face certain phobias.
    5. Hypervigilance: Your spouse might constantly be on the lookout for potential threats or dangers, even in situations where there is little risk. They may be excessively concerned about safety or engage in excessive checking behaviors.
    6. Perfectionism: Anxiety can contribute to a strong desire for perfection and fear of making mistakes. Your spouse may be excessively critical of themselves or others, striving for unattainable standards.
    7. Increased sensitivity to criticism: Individuals with anxiety may be highly sensitive to criticism or perceived judgment from others. They may take feedback personally and become defensive or withdrawn.
    8. Sleep disturbances: Anxiety can interfere with sleep patterns, leading to difficulty falling asleep, staying asleep, or experiencing restless and disturbed sleep.
    9. Changes in mood or behavior: Anxiety can affect a person’s mood, causing them to feel more on edge, nervous, or easily overwhelmed. Your spouse may withdraw from activities they used to enjoy or have difficulty concentrating.


It’s important to remember that these signs and symptoms may vary from person to person, and not everyone with anxiety will display all of them. If you suspect that your spouse may be experiencing anxiety, it is best to have an open and supportive conversation with them. Encourage them to seek professional help from a mental health professional who can provide an accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment options.



Spousal Anxiety

Photo by Kirill Ozerov



How Does Anxiety Impact My Spouse Emotionally?


Anxiety often involves a persistent sense of unease, fear, or worry that can range from mild to intense. Individuals with anxiety may feel a constant sense of dread or impending doom without a specific cause. They may also experience irritability, restlessness, and a heightened sensitivity to stress or perceived threats.


Anxiety can lead to feelings of helplessness, a loss of control, and a general sense of unease that lingers throughout the day.


People with frequent anxiety may have difficulty in relationship with friends, family, and intimate partners. This is because it interrupts their ability to effectively express emotions in a moderate and controlled way.







How Does Anxiety Impact My Spouse Physically?


Anxiety can manifest in physical symptoms, which can vary in intensity and duration. These physical sensations can include increased heart rate, palpitations, chest tightness, shortness of breath, dizziness, sweating, trembling or shaking, gastrointestinal discomfort, headaches, muscle tension, or fatigue. Some individuals may experience panic attacks, which involve sudden and intense surges of fear or discomfort accompanied by severe physical symptoms.


Anxiety can have a variety of physical effects on people. Also, anxiety can show up in different ways for different people.




What Medications Are Best For Anxiety?


Common medications perscribed for Anxiety include:

  • Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs)
  • Serotonin-Norepinephrine Reuptake Inhibitors (SNRIs)
  • Benzodiazepines
  • Buspirone
  • Beta-Blockers


It’s important to note that medication effectiveness and suitability can vary from person to person. Different anxiety disorders may respond better to specific medications, and individual factors such as medical history, potential drug interactions, and side effects should be considered.


A mental health medication professional, such as a psychiatrist or a primary care doctor, can assess your specific situation and guide you in making the best treatment choices for your anxiety. They will take into account factors such as your symptoms, medical history, and individual needs to determine the most appropriate medication and dosage for you.




What Is Anxiety Therapy?


Anxiety therapy, also known as anxiety counseling or psychotherapy for anxiety, refers to various therapeutic approaches and interventions designed to help individuals manage and alleviate symptoms of anxiety disorders. Anxiety therapy is typically provided by mental health professionals, such as psychologists, counselors, or psychiatrists, who specialize in treating anxiety.


The specific type of therapy used may vary depending on the individual’s needs, preferences, and the therapist’s approach. Popular Approaches include Cognitive Behavior Therapy, Dialectical Behavior Therapy, and Acceptance & Commitment Therapy.





Medically Reviewed By: Dr. Kyle Zrenchik, PhD, LMFT

Published : 05/28/2023



Disclaimer: ALL IN Therapy Clinic aims to improve people’s lives. We do this through providing effective mental health counseling by passionate professionals. Inspired by this, we write content for your own education. Also, our content is researched, cited, reviewed, and edited by licensed mental health professionals.  However, the information we provide is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.  Additionally, it should not be used in place of the advice of a qualified healthcare provider.






Written and reviewed by

Dr Kyle Zrenchik, PhD, ACS, LMFT

Dr. Kyle Zrenchik is the Co-Founder of ALL IN, the Creator of the Couples Erotic Flow model for treating sexual issues in individuals and couples, Designer of the Deep Dive programs at ALL IN, and is one of the most well-respected couples counselors in the Twin Cities.

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