Radio 4 Discusses Anxiety Problems

Radio 4 Discusses Anxiety Problems

by Dr Emma Gray - 28th January, 2014


Anxiety, the often debilitating problem suffered by millions of people worldwide, was the topic under discussion on BBC Radio 4’s Women’s Hour this morning.  Highlighting the overwhelmingly distressing nature of the physical and psychological symptoms of this mental health problem the programme talked to Dr David Clarke, a Professor of Psychology and expert in the field of Anxiety and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), currently the most effective treatment available for Anxiety.

 


Dr Clark highlighted the needed for increased training and awareness amongst GPs
about Anxiety and about the effective treatments available.  In particular he explained the need for an improved knowledge of therapies that offer longer term and lasting relief like Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) instead of short term solutions like antidepressant medication which frequently has unpleasant side effects, often cannot be taken over longer periods and results in relapse once the therapy is stopped because the underlying cause of the anxiety has not been resolved as it is in therapies like Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT).

Access to effective treatments for anxiety like Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) on the NHS is limited despite recent government initiatives (e.g. Improving Access to Psychological Therapies {IAPTs}) aimed at improving this; waiting times remain significant and treatments are truncated to ensure as many people are seen as possible.  The result is that anxiety sufferers have to turn to the unregulated private sector for help where clever marketing and baseless promises leave those already vulnerable individuals in a position where the so called ‘solution’ to their problem can actually make things worse.


Dr Emma Gray

Dr Emma Gray

I am often the first person with whom my patients share significant and intimate thoughts and memories; I never take that privileged position for granted nor the opportunity to help someone to feel better about themselves and discover a more fulfilling life. One of my colleague once described me as natural psychologist; I guess she was alluding to the fact that I feel at ease being a therapist, I can empathise with people’s distress and discomfort but don’t feel overwhelmed by it, I can understand their problem and know how to help, it has always just felt like what I should be doing.


Read more about my approach to counselling here...


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