What is the best way to treat anxiety?
 Click image to go back to Anxiety Topics. In the late 1950's, a researcher at Stanford named Joseph Wolpe discovered an interesting relationship between anxiety and relaxation. He noticed that when people had high level of anxiety, they had low levels of relaxation. Conversely, when they had high levels of relaxation, they had low levels of anxiety. This is interesting to chart out on the various physical parameters that can be measured (see chart below).

In fact, on every physical dimension which has been measured, anxiety and relaxation have been found to be opposite of each other.

Wolpe experimented further and found that anxiety and relaxation move in a fixed relationship with each other. He found that as one moves up, the other moves down, rather like bicycle pedals. This reciprocal action is very important for the treatment of anxiety disorders. It means that you can change the level of anxiety by changing your state of relaxation.

High Anxiety
High Relaxation
Your blood pressure is higher. Your blood pressure is lower.
Your respiration rate is higher. Your respiration rate is lower.
You take shallow breaths, breathing with the top third of your lungs. You take deep breaths, breathing with all of your lungs.
Your muscles are tensed, prepared to fight or run. Your muscles are relaxed. There is no need to fight or run.
Your pupils are constricted. Your pupils are dilated.
Your blood flow is shunted from the periphery to your trunk. As a result, you have cold hands and feet. Your blood flows evenly throughout your body. As a result, you have warm hands and feet.
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Of course, it is not always easy to relax when you are in the middle of an anxiety attack. If you need help with this, contact Dr. Kaisch and make an appointment. He can teach you the three methods of relaxation which have an adequate research base. He uses methods that have been developed from around the world in his treatment of patients with anxiety. To date, he has had a very high degree of success with those who complete treatment. For most uncomplicated cases of anxiety, treatment takes around fifteen weeks. Dr. Kaisch focuses on symptom reduction using behavioral methods. Because most anxious people trigger their anxiety by thinking about it , he also employs cognitive methods to help you change your patterns of thinking to more constructive ones.

For more information, click one of the subject areas below:


Common Anxiety Disorders


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