Emotional Effects
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Being Afraid: An Anxiety Cause and Symptom

Micah Abraham, BSc
Being Afraid: An Anxiety Cause and Symptom

Anxiety is, in a sense, fear. Anxiety isn't necessarily being afraid of anything, but anxiety is the activation of your fight or flight system - the system that is triggered by fear. This is one of the issues that makes anxiety so confusing. You can have anxiety and not be afraid, but anxiety itself is a malfunctioning fight or flight system, so your body is reacting like it's afraid.

But can being afraid also be a symptom of anxiety? The answer is absolutely yes, and we will explore it in this article.

How Your Anxiety Causes Fear

If fear is what's causing your anxiety, you're not alone. You may have a fear of public spaces, a fear of spiders, or just a lot of fears throughout your day. Fears do commonly cause anxiety. 

But what about anxiety causing you to be afraid? That can happen too.

Anxiety causes several changes and symptoms that can actually create fear even when fear wasn't there. Below are just a small sample of the number of ways that anxiety can contribute to being afraid:

These are all of the basic reasons that anxiety itself can cause being afraid as a symptom. We know that being afraid can cause anxiety, but there is a lot of evidence that the other way around is true as well.

Comprehensive Anxiety Treatment

Being afraid causes anxiety and anxiety can cause being afraid. This complicated relationship can make it really hard to control your anxiety and stop it from affecting you.

That's why you need to make sure that you're engaged in an anxiety treatment that is known to improve your long term ability to control fear.

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