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“Don’t worry” falls short when someone experiences anxiety. There are better things to say when a love one needs support.
Everyone experiences anxiety differently, but if you’ve ever been around someone who is having a panic attack, suggesting “Try not to worry” is not the best idea.
“You can say things that make anxiety worse,” Dr. Ken Duckworth, medical director of the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), told TODAY. “People don’t like to be dismissed.”
Anxiety is unique because everyone experiences it in normal amounts. It helps people avoid danger and be successful, for example. But anxiety can become worrisome.
“Anxiety has always been interesting because it is the only psychiatric illness that is also experienced by people without a psychiatric illness,” Dr. Robert Hudak, an associate professor of psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh, told TODAY.
Saying “Don’t worry” might seem…
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