FACT SHEET: Adult Anxiety


Do you often worry? Do your fears make it difficult to enjoy life?  Is it difficult to feel good about work, feel secure in relationships and just relax?  The fact is that when there is too much anxiety in adults, it affects their ability to think clearly and approach activities with confidence.  While some anxiety is normal and healthy, too much anxiety in adults can become toxic eroding their self-confidence and ability to be successful in their life pursuits

Signs of Too Much Anxiety in Adults:

  • Regular Avoidance of Situations
  • Fearful Thinking
  • Restlessness or Feeling Keyed Up
  • Easily Fatigued / Often Tired
  • Difficulty Concentrating
  • Problem Remembering Information
  • Irritability
  • Muscle Tension
  • Sleep Disturbance (difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep; restless sleep)
  • Headaches, Intestinal Problems
  • Easily Feels Hurt & Criticized


When anxiety has an ongoing negative impact on a person’s relationships, work or school performance and/or peace of mind, there is reason to be concerned. When a person struggles with unhealthy levels of anxiety they’re not able to be themselves and perform up to their abilities. They are often afraid of making even a little mistake believing it will lead to judgment, rejection or some other tragedy.  The overly anxious person will lie in bed at the end of the day going through all the events finding things to feel worried about.  They often believe others are thinking negatively about them.  Though others around the anxious person may affirm their physical attractiveness, talent, competence, lovability, etc., they struggle to believe it.  The fears of judgment, rejection or other negative outcomes overpower their ability to hold onto the positive truths about who they are and past positive outcomes.

Anxiety is meant to mobilize people to respond to situations that require their attention.  When anxiety in adults is chronic, it becomes toxic, eroding their ability to think clearly and act effectively.  Negative thoughts like, “I don’t have anything to offer”; “I will just make a fool of myself”; “People will judge me”; “Something bad might happen to me”, maintain fear and insecurity. This leads to trying harder than necessary in order to feel safe, acceptable, etc.  It can also lead to the avoidance of social situations in order to manage anticipated embarrassment, rejection, tragic experience, etc.  While there is no evidence that the anticipated fear will happen, the feelings are often more powerful than sound logic.

It is important for an individual who is suffering from ongoing anxiety to be evaluated, assessed and to receive appropriate treatment.  Without treatment, anxiety tends to persist negatively affecting important relationships, work performance and joy in life. Without treatment, anxiety often gets worse.  This can lead to other mental & physical health problems.

Always seek a qualified mental health provider or medical doctor who is trained to evaluate and make treatment recommendations. A competent mental health professional will do a thorough job of gathering all the information necessary to determine what is likely causing the problem.

Michael Webb & Morag Webb are qualified licensed counselors. Their offices are located in Newport Beach, CA. They are able to assess your situation and make treatment recommendations for anxiety related problems. If an individual is diagnosed with anxiety, the recommended treatment may include one or more of the following: individual counseling, family counseling, an anxiety support group, group therapy, medication evaluation, psychological testing, referral to additional resources. The most important thing is get the person suffering from anxiety feeling better so they can continue to engage their lives physically, emotionally and socially in healthy ways.

DISCLAIMER: When there is a mental health concern or problem, accessing information on a website should never take the place of meeting with a mental health professional. The material in this fact sheet is information only and is not personal mental health advice. If you suspect you or another person is suffering from a mental health condition, get help by calling and meeting with a qualified mental health provider. In the event of a mental health emergency, call 911 or go to the nearest hospital or urgent care center.
Contact Webb Counseling to discuss your situation.