Anxiety on the rise for adults, some experts encourage screening

More and more adults are reporting that they’re feeling anxious and stressed, and because of this, experts are recommending that adults under age 64 should be s
Published: Sep. 26, 2022 at 12:16 PM MST
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PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -- Adults are dealing with a lot of different kinds of stressors these days, even more after the effects of the pandemic.

More and more adults are reporting that they’re feeling anxious and stressed, and because of this, some experts are recommending that adults under age 64 should be screened for anxiety. Dr. Sharon Thompson, a Phoenix OB-GYN, dropped by Good Morning Arizona on Monday to talk about what can be done to help adults cope with these levels of daily stress.

The doctor said that the U.S. Preventative Services Task Force is investigating whether to recommend screening adults for anxiety. Essentially, the investigation is in draft form and is open for public comment by individuals impacted by the decision. If enough individuals weigh in, there’s a strong possibility that experts will put the health recommendation into a formal practice. You can learn more about that here.

Conversations about mental health and wellness are critical. “This is a condition that many many folks can relate to,” Dr. Thompson said. “What we’re talking about is screening for symptoms that go beyond stress. Things that would make us feel anxious for a day or a week--folks suffering from anxiety feel symptoms like heart racing or being tearful--for months.”

Dr. Thompson said she believes that all health providers should check in with their patients to check on their mental health, something she believes is just as if not more important than physical health. “It’s a little bit more complicated than just screening, but we should as all providers be checking in on our patients to see how they’re doing,” she said.

“When the response is out of proportion to anything that would be helpful in coping with the incident, whether it’s rising costs or a spider, then you know that something else is going on here,” she said. “If you’re not able to carry on with the daily activities of life, something else is going on, and you need to seek care for yourself or for a loved one.”