The holiday season is filled with events that some people may find stressful. Social gatherings, travel arrangements, meal preparation and gift giving are just a few aspects of the busy time of year that can put extra pressure on mental health.
People living with an anxiety disorder can find these extra activities more taxing, says Stephanie Waechter, an assistant clinical professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioural Neurosciences of McMaster University’s Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine.
“Some people may experience an increase in anxiety, including both mental and physical symptoms, in the winter and especially around the holidays,” says Waechter, who is also a psychologist at the Anxiety Treatment and Research Clinic at St. Joseph’s Healthcare Hamilton.
“Anxiety disorder” is an umbrella term that covers different types of anxiety. Among the signs of anxiety are irrational and excessive fear, tense feelings and difficulty managing daily tasks and/or stress related to those tasks.
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