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Every 3rd Pakistani suffering from depression, anxiety: Neurologist discloses.

HYDERABAD -- Consultant Neuro-spinal surgeon and Assistant Professor Department of Neurology, Liaquat University of Medical and Health Sciences (LUMHS), Jamshoro, Dr. Riaz Ahmed Raja disclosed that around 32 to 34 percent people were suffering from depression and anxiety disorders in Pakistan due to a host of reasons.

Talking to reporter here on Friday, Dr. Riaz Ahmed said that studies on temporal relationship between anxiety disorder and depression have discovered different trajectories. He said that the most common situation is that patients start off with an anxiety disorder and develop depression overtime along with persistent anxiety symptoms.

Anxiety and depressive disorders are three and four times more prevalent in diabetic patients than in the general population, affecting 15 to 20 percent of the diabetics, Dr. Riaz said.

He further said about the depressive side effect that 22 percent coronary heart disease (CHD) patients suffer major depression and unknown anxiety disorder.

Dr. Raja said that there are many types of anxiety disorders that include panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, post traumatic stress syndrome, social anxiety disorder and generalized anxiety disorder.

He said that anxiety is a normal human emotion that everyone experiences at times and many people feel anxious, or nervous, when faced with a problem at work, or before taking a test or making an important decision. Anxiety disorders, however, are different. They can cause such distress that it interferes with a person's ability to lead a normal life.

He said that an anxiety disorder is a serious mental illness and in the people with anxiety disorders, worry and fear are constant and overwhelming, and can be crippling.

Dr. Riaz Ahmed Raja further said that there are several recognized anxiety disorders including people with this condition having feelings of terror that strike suddenly.

He said that Anxiety disorder can radically impair family, work, and social relationships and patients may lose their jobs and independence.

Dr. Riaz Ahmed said that people with disorder may also suffer from clinical depression, fear, substance abuse, obsessive-compulsive disorder, or irritable bowel syndrome.

He said that most people experience moments of anxiety and they worry about money, their job, political situation, or some other issue but panic disorder is far more serious.

He informed that the first step in diagnosing panic disorder is to rule out physical disorders and some of the symptoms described also occur with medical conditions, such as heart problems.

Dr. Riaz Ahmed Raja suggested the patients can also make changes in their Lifestyle to reduce the risk of panic attacks and these changes include eliminating caffeine and alcohol from their diets and avoiding certain legal and illegal drugs, such as marijuana and cocaine.

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Publication:Balochistan Times (Baluchistan Province, Pakistan)
Date:May 12, 2018
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