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Medizinische Zentren Geissberg

Anxiety disorders

Anxiety disorders

Anxiety Disorders in Children and Adolescents

About 5 to 11 percent of children, adolescents, and young adults suffer from anxiety disorders.

This includes fears of animals or objects; fears of speaking; fears of going to school; fear of colleagues; fear of exams and sometimes also fear of father, mother, stepfather or stepmother.

Medical treatment

The outpatient day clinic therapy program of the 8-week program includes:

  • An average of 6 therapeutic hours per week (group and individual psychotherapy, occupational therapy)
  • Physical and sports therapy individually and in a group 4 hours weekly
  • Relaxation training according to Jacobson
  • Self-confidence training according to Ullrich (saying no, making social contacts) 1 hour weekly
  • Computer training methods 1 hour weekly

We place special emphasis on:

  • Learning how to deal with anxiety (relaxation exercises, sports, etc.)
  • Exposure exercises (gradually confronting anxiety-provoking stimuli)
  • Observing social behavior in the group
  • Initiating social medical measures (career counseling, assistance with professional, educational, financial, and housing issues, etc.).

If indicated, medication therapies are also used, in consultation with the doctors before and after treatment.

Individual Therapeutic Offer

Exposure and individual therapy as needed.

Patients MZG

As a patient in the partial inpatient or outpatient program, you are entitled to interdisciplinary consultations in your personal area of concern.

You can receive the following information:

  • Scientific information about anxiety disorders
  • Relaxed exposure to anxiety situations
  • Help in achieving set goals
  • Support for maintaining the improved condition
  • Addresses of self-help groups

If you are interested in such additional consultation, please contact your primary therapist. They will schedule an appointment with one of the specialists for you.

Therapy Goals

  • permanent reduction of anxiety
  • learning relaxation exercises
  • prevention of consequences such as social isolation, depression, suicidality, etc.

To achieve this, we initially work with the patient in the first phase of the process

  • on therapy motivation
  • on compliance
  • on a deeper understanding of the problem and disease contexts
  • on access to physical experiential capability through sports and physiotherapy

This first phase of the process can extend over a longer period, often even over the entire duration of the 8 weeks. This means that symptom freedom is not achieved, but awareness for further therapeutic steps has been created.

Depending on the personality structure and cognitive abilities, further work can be done on introspective ability, confrontability, and conflict resolution skills.

Scientifically expected success rate

Follow-up studies on outpatient cognitive behavioral therapies for anxiety disorders show the following results:

  • 60-75% of patients benefit from in vivo exposure therapies (Barlow, 1998).
  • Panic control treatments by Telch et al. (1993) result in 63% panic freedom.
  • High-potency benzodiazepines and antidepressants are of little use compared to flooding and cognitive-behavioral programs for panic disorder (Clum et al., 1993). Benzodiazepines should be prescribed in combination with antidepressants (Salman et al., 2001).
  • Massive exposure is most effective for agoraphobia (Schneider & Margraf, 1998).
  • For impending fainting spells (blood, injection, and injury phobia), applied tension according to Öst is the therapy of choice (Öst, 1996).

Literature on Anxiety Disorders

Clum, G.A., Clum, G.A., & Surls, R. (1993). A meta-analysis of treatments for panic disorder. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 61, 317-326.

Barlow, D.H., Esler, J.L., Vitali, A.E. (1998). Psychosocial treatments for panic disorders, phobisa, and generalized anxiety disorder: In P.E. Nathan and J.M. Gorman (Eds.). Treatments that work. New York: Oxford University Press.

Öst, L.G. (1996). Spezifische Phobien: In J. Margraf (Hrsg). Lehrbuch der Verhaltenstherapie. Berlin: Springer.

Schneider, S. & Margraf, J. (1998). Agoraphobie und Panikstörung. Göttingen: Hogrefe.

Salzman, C., Goldenberg, I., Bruce, S.E., & Keller, M.B. (2001). Pharmacologic treatment of anxiety disorders in 1989 versus 1996: Results from the Harvard/Brown anxiety disorders research program. Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, 62(3), 149-152.

Telch, M.J., Lucas, J.A., Schmidt, N.B., Hanna, H., Jaimez, T.S. & Lucas, R.A. (1993). Group cognitive-behavioral treatment of panic disorder. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 31, 279-287.

Managing Director
Hr. Dr. phil. Jürg Siegfried



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