Men and Anxiety

Anxiety and anxiety disorders are one of the most common mental health challenges for men. At least one in five men will experience an anxiety disorder. And that is considered an underestimate as many men often do not seek assistance and push through and find other coping.

My hope by providing this specific page for men, that there is more awareness of the symptoms and toll anxiety can have on men.

Anxiety can encompass a spectrum of disorders.  Please see my page on Anxiety Disorders for more information.

What are common signs and symptoms of anxiety in men?

Most people feel anxious or nervous over things like making public speeches or tests, etc. (although I do have some nice treatments for those situations)
When anxious feelings or nervousness become so severe, they interfere with your ability to work, maintain relationships and get a decent night’s sleep, and decrease your sense of wellbeing and quality of life, it is time to get help.

Physical signs of anxiety may include:

  • pounding or racing heart
  • excessive sweating
  • muscle tension
  • restlessness or agitation
  • dizziness, vertigo, wooziness, or feeling shaky or unstable on your feet
  • shortness of breath or choking sensations
  • insomnia
  • panic or anxiety attacks
  • Stomach pain and/or diarrhea
  • Tremors or shakiness – internal feeling or externally seen
  • Chest Discomfort or tightness
  • Sometimes numbness in extremities or transient sensations
  • Physical pains like stomach pains, jaw pain from clenching in sleep, and muscle spasms.

Emotional signs of anxiety may include:

  • frequent worry about what could go wrong in the future or rehashing what went ‘wrong’ in the past
  • feelings of dread, panic, or chronic worry
  • concentration problems
  • avoidance
  • catastrophic thinking
  • irritability, anger, or edginess or crankiness
  • being overly cautious or vigilant towards danger of self or loved ones
  • absentmindedness
  • fear of losing control.
  • Feel the need to check things like the door lock to ensure safety
  • Fear of not being in control
  • Depression

Anxiety and Depression often go hand-in-hand and it is difficult to separate the two. They often feed off of each other.

Please see the page on Men and Depression for more information.

FAQ’s – Frequently Asked Questions

stacked rocks on wooden pier

It is often multi-factorial. Many men push through long-term difficult things mentally and physically.  This is wearing on the mind, body, and spirit. For anxiety, often there is an environmental aspect or trigger, such as work, finances, health, family, or other stressors.  Sometimes just physical or mental exhaustion or fatigue can set off or worsen anxiety.  Sometimes there is a hormonal aspect, such as thyroid, adrenal, testosterone, and more.  Sometimes it is a nutritional deficiency that could be due to many reasons. Some people have a genetic predisposition, and it is showing up. Sometimes it is due to medications a man is on and is a side effect.  Sometimes it is chronic pain or chronic conditions like diabetes that contribute. Therefore, it is so important to find all contributing factors and why I take the time to do so with my patients.

Telehealth is easy, convenient, and available through the comfort and privacy of or your own home or office.  Many men feel like they can open up easier with telemedicine.  Even National Suicide and Depression hotlines are adding more tech-friendly options for reaching out, like text and email, and it is really helping people get access. The other thing is that if people have agoraphobia or Social Anxiety or if they need extra privacy, often seeking medical help online is very helpful. My male patients love telemedicine.

I work with a lot of men with anxiety, depression, and other mental health, and physical health conditions. I see many men in my practice.

What is Dr. Litov’s approach to helping men with anxiety and other mental health issues?

The goal is to improve your day-to-day quality of life, to be able to function better at home and work.  This doesn’t happen overnight, so there are a number of steps.

  • I do a deep dive into what may be causing your depression and other mental health issues. I conduct a thorough evaluation of present symptoms, medical history, labs, and imaging, and take the time to find out how your depression is showing up and affecting you in the present and past.
  • I take a multi-systems approach and look at the genetic, biological, neurological, biochemical, hormonal, environmental, medications, nutritional aspects of what is going on for you and address whether they are contributing to your symptoms.
  • I will address both the acute symptoms and the underlying root cause of the symptoms. This way you can get some more short-term relief while uncovering and treating the underlying cause of the problems.
  • I integrate the best of both natural and conventional medicine for individualized treatments and care.
  • I see you and treat you as a person, not a set of symptoms or a diagnosis!

If you or someone you know is in immediate distress or is thinking about hurting themselves, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline toll-free at 1-800-273-TALK (8255). You also can text the Crisis Text Line (HELLO to 741741) or use the Lifeline Chat on the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline website.