If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder, agoraphobia, social anxiety disorder or another related condition, we want you to know:
There is hope.
Our whole-person, sustainable approach to recovery has helped adults aged 18+ experiencing a wide range of anxiety disorders experience ease, build self-esteem, and reclaim their lives.
We can help you or your loved one too.
Recovery is Possible
Our Approach to Healing Anxiety Disorders
A Focus on Wellness & Possibility
Anxiety disorders transform day-to-day tasks into battles against distress; they constrict people’s lives around dread. We recognize how exhausting and debilitating this can be, so we meet every individual who enters our residential rehab programs at both The Farm (our long-term anxiety treatment center) and CooperRiis at Asheville (our short-term anxiety treatment center) with profound compassion.
We also believe that individuals with anxiety disorders are capable of living full, gratifying lives. That’s why we do more than temporarily mitigate symptoms: We provide residents the tailored, whole-person care they need to reclaim their lives from the grip of excessive worry.
Anxiety disorders occur when the body’s natural fight or flight mechanisms begin functioning improperly, resulting in excessive feelings of dread, nervousness, and stress, even when there is no real danger present. 30% of adults in the U.S. are affected by at least one type of anxiety disorder in their lifetimes. Of that percentage:
- 7-9% experience a specific phobia
- 2% experience agoraphobia
- 7% experience social anxiety disorder
- 2-3% experience a panic disorder
- 2% experience generalized anxiety disorder
- 1-2% experience separation anxiety disorder
In general, women are more likely to experience anxiety disorders than men are. The above data comes from the American Psychiatric Association.
While anxiety is a normal response to danger or stress, an anxiety disorder may be present if you experience one or more of the following symptoms persistently, disproportionately, and in such a way that it interferes with your day-to-day life
Common emotional signs of anxiety disorders include:
- Excessive and irrational fear
- Excessive and irrational worry
- Always anticipating the worst
- Feeling tense and jumpy
- General uneasiness
- Feelings of apprehension or dread
- Continually watching for signs of danger
- Difficulty concentrating
Common physical signs of anxiety include:
- Rapid heartbeat
- Stomach upset/diarrhea/nausea
- Frequent urination
- Shortness of breath
- Dry mouth
- Muscle tension or twitches
- Insomnia/issues with sleep
- Inability to be still
- Cold, sweaty, numb or tingling hands or feet (paresthesia)
This list of symptoms commonly associated with anxiety disorders is by no means exhaustive. Anxiety can manifest in hundreds of ways, which is why these types of conditions are often misdiagnosed. If you suspect you have an anxiety disorder, it is important to seek counsel from a psychiatric/ psychological professional. Such an individual can help you better understand the nature of your condition and provide you with a diagnosis if necessary.
There are many different kinds of anxiety disorders, and people can experience more than one at the same time. Below are descriptions of some common types:
Generalized Anxiety Disorder
Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) symptoms include excessive, persistent worry that interferes with normal activities and can harm personal relationships. This condition makes everyday life feel overwhelming and even exhausting.
Those diagnosed with panic disorder experience recurrent panic attacks, or episodes during which anxiety disorder symptoms are intensified for a short period – usually 10 minutes or less. Sometimes, these experiences are so extreme that they’re mistaken for heart attacks or other life-threatening issues.
Common symptoms of a panic attack include:
- Surges of overwhelming panic and or terror
- Heart palpitations or chest pain
- Trembling or shaking
- Difficulty breathing or hyperventilation
- Choking sensation
- Nausea or upset stomach
- Feeling dizzy, faint, or lightheaded
- Hot flashes or chills
- Feelings of unreality or being detached from oneself
- Fear of losing control or “going crazy”
- Fear of dying
Phobias, Specific Phobia, and Irrational Fear
A specific phobia is an intense and persistent fear of a situation or activity that is generally not harmful. People who have phobias will go to extreme lengths to avoid whatever frightens them. Even though they often know that their distress is disproportionate, they require professional help to overcome it. One common phobia is agoraphobia. Agoraphobia is the fear of being exposed or trapped within potentially dangerous, harmful, or embarrassing situations. It can cause people to avoid public spaces, seriously impeding their ability to carry out normal, day-to-day activities.
Social Anxiety Disorder
Individuals with social anxiety disorder are preoccupied with the possibility of being embarrassed, ridiculed, judged, or rejected by others. As a result of this fear, they avoid social settings and often refrain from cultivating important connections with friends and family.
Separation Anxiety Disorder
People with separation anxiety disorder experience excessive fear of losing those with whom they’re closest. They may refuse to spend any length of time apart from the people who are the focus of their attachment, experiencing feelings of anxiety and fear beyond established norms.
Substance-Induced Anxiety Disorder
Consumption — especially overconsumption — of alcohol, drugs, caffeine, or other substances can trigger anxiety disorders in some individuals. Symptoms can result directly from intoxication or may be triggered by withdrawal.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is an anxiety disorder that develops after experiencing or witnessing a traumatic event. PTSD is most often associated with veterans and wartime involvement, but many types of experiences can trigger the onset of this condition. That’s why we take a highly personalized approach to the treatment of PTSD at CooperRiis.
Yes, it is possible to experience these two conditions simultaneously. In some cases, depression develops as a result of crippling anxiety, and in other cases anxiety is a symptom of major depression. The good news is that the personalized, holistic, recovery-focused care that we deliver at CooperRiis has helped people diagnosed with both depression and anxiety to better manage their conditions so they can live full, gratifying lives.
While there is no “cure” for anxiety disorders, dedicated, holistic treatment can dramatically reduce the severity of symptoms, teach individuals how to effectively manage their bodies’ responses to stress, and position people to achieve their highest levels of health and wellness.
Taking Gradual Steps Towards Manageable Goals
Resident-Centered, Relationship-Driven Care
The success of our approach to anxiety disorder recovery hinges on the relationships we build with our residents. By taking the time to listen to their experiences, understand their values, and gain their trust, our staff creates a healing space where those experiencing excessive anxiety feel safe to make progress through every stage of recovery.
Structured Approach, Adaptive Support
The programs at CooperRiis' residential treatment centers offer structure and security while remaining flexible so staff can adapt to residents' changing needs in real time. If one of our residents experiences an unexpected panic/anxiety attack, for example, we don't just usher them along to their next activity as if nothing happened. Instead, we place a pause on their schedule so we can provide them with the concerted care they need to fully recover from the episode.
We collaborate with residents to create individualized plans that offer opportunities to participate in our healing community through recreation and enjoyable work. That way, individuals with anxiety disorders can apply what they learn within a variety of settings. In addition to reinforcing newly adopted coping skills, this enables our staff to offer the ongoing encouragement and feedback residents need to achieve their goals.
Building Self Esteem and Resilience In Phases
Integrated, Whole-Person Treatment
Individuals with anxiety respond best to multimodal, multi-phase treatment plans. That’s why, rather than relying exclusively on medications or therapy, we combine a variety of evidence-based treatments to address all of the following seven domains of health for our residents:
The Seven Domains of Recovery
Treatment Plans That Meet Residents Where They Are
No matter where they are on their recovery journey, every CooperRiis resident receives personalized care that allows them to make sustainable progress towards their goals. While this means every individual’s recovery plan is unique, the following types of anxiety disorder treatments have been especially beneficial for our residents:
Soothing, Stress-Free Environment
Nutrition and Supplements
Breathwork and Mindfulness Practices
Dual Diagnosis Groups
Our Recovery Model Works
Data collected over 10 years show that the residential treatment program for anxiety disorders at CooperRiis works. Individuals who benefit from our holistic, recovery-focused model of care make demonstrable progress in multiple domains of health.
An extensive body of research and clinical experience affirms these findings: Combining psychotherapy with a strong, supportive community, structured daily routines, physical wellness programs, and an integrative approach to medication can dramatically improve the lives of individuals with anxiety disorders.
After participating in our program, people with anxiety disorders:
- Are able to carry out day-to-day functions successfully and with a greater ease.
- Experience long-term improvements in emotional wellbeing.
- Gain stable senses of self esteem and confidence.
- Are empowered to become stewards of their own health.
2019 Alumni Survey Results
are engaged in either competitive employment, volunteering, or going to school.