Many people experience worry, fear and anxiety during and after a traumatic event. They may feel physically sick, terrified, stressed, or on edge. Some people may also feel disoriented – where things seem unreal.


If these feelings persist or the level of anxiety becomes so severe that it significantly interferes with everyday life, it may mean that you have an anxiety disorder. Anxiety disorders are common. One in 10 Australians experiences an anxiety disorder at any given time. Common anxiety disorders after trauma are generalised anxiety disorder and panic disorder.


Some people experience anxiety alongside other problems such as posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, or substance use.


Could I be suffering from anxiety?

The main symptoms of anxiety are:

  • breathlessness
  • racing heart
  • sweating
  • shaking or trembling
  • dizziness
  • nausea
  • feeling restless or on edge
  • constant worry or dread


Getting help

If you have been experiencing a number of these problems for more than a few days, you should talk to your doctor or a mental health professional.