Preface to “Anxiety Protocol”

Hits: 125

Anxiety-Protocol-2There’s a quiet revolution occurring in psychiatry. The mental illness burden is felt worldwide, yet psychiatry has not been able to help millions of people who suffer from mental illness, as access to psychiatry and mental health services is at a crisis (Fields and Corbett-Dooren, 2014). Psychiatry is fast becoming trivialized due to its inability to deliver treatment to the population. But gone are the days when doctors had the monopoly on medical knowledge. With the advent of the internet, people can now research their symptoms, possible illnesses, and treatment options before even seeing the doctor. When people are suffering from mental illness and can’t access psychiatry, they still need help. As a result, people naturally look to the internet and research their ailments online. For people with anxiety, this book, Anxiety Protocol, and its affiliated website, AnxietyBoss.com, represent a new option for those who suffer from anxiety but are not able to receive help. This is an online solution that is based on self-help and natural remedies for anxiety. It is for the newer generations who are not pill-poppers and seek a natural, self-reliant way of getting rid of their anxiety. It is for the new generation who are more health-conscious and looking for healthy living options to treat and prevent anxiety. What we offer here is the latest evidence-based program to help eradicate your anxiety. These are evidence-based services and products that have research showing they are effective at eradicating anxiety…all from the comfort of your laptop, tablet, or smartphone. Imagine: a treatment for anxiety that does not involve going to a doctor’s office or hospital. This is the quiet revolution in psychiatry, where a treatment for anxiety can be effective and delivered without a doctor or therapist, without prescription medications (that have multiple and sometimes severe side effects). Certainly, I’m not advocating you ditch your psychiatrist if you already have one. If you have severe anxiety disorder, then you do need to see a psychiatrist. However, for milder forms of anxiety, this online, natural, and self-reliant intervention will signal the beginning of the quiet revolution in psychiatry, where treatment is delivered virtually, online.

But psychiatry still has much to offer people who have mental illness. These are important and exciting times for the profession, as it tries to figure out the neurobiological underpinnings of mental illness. Currently, clinical psychiatry does not have objective, biological tests to help confirm mental illness. Rather, mental illness is diagnosed based on history and clinical presentation. However, psychiatry is fast becoming a specialty of medicine based on the brain. The mind, and the various problems and illnesses that are from disorders of the mind, can basically be explained at a molecular level, with neurons communicating with each other via synapses, and these synapses connect to one another via neurotransmitters. These neurotransmitters are the chemicals which carry out the message between neurons, and the receptors of these neurotransmitters are the targets of the psychiatric medications prescribed for mental illness…this is the so-called “chemical imbalance” of mental illness. But mental illness is much more complex than a chemical imbalance. In the brain on a macro level, mental processes have specific circuitry, which connect different parts of the brain, and this circuitry is comprised of the neurons which conduct the message between brain areas. Functional neuroimaging is already revealing preliminary evidence that mental illness is associated with disruptions of these brain circuits, and that treatment can normalize these circuits. It is hypothesized that psychotherapy and other alternative treatments can also normalize these disruptions in brain circuitry. In addition to neuroimaging research, genetics research is on the verge of finding the constellation of genes responsible for transmission of mental illness in families. In the next few years, psychiatry should have objective, biological tests to help diagnose mental illness, and cures may be possible. These are exciting times in psychiatry, given it is at the brink of finding the cause (and cure) of mental illness.

On the other hand, it is also the worst of times for psychiatry, given so many people with mental illness suffer without treatment. This book, Anxiety Protocol, and its affiliated website, AnxietyBoss.com, respond to those individuals who often go unheard. It’s been developed to deliver treatment online and virtually. It is our sincere hope that we can reach the millions who suffer from anxiety, and provide them with a natural, online, and self-reliant solution to their ailment.

 

Carlo Carandang, MD

Author, Anxiety Protocol

September 2014

Book Review: Anxiety Protocol

Hits: 136

Anxiety Protocol, The Foundation: Understanding Anxiety, Author: Carlo Carandang, MD

Book Reviewer: Sheik Hosenbocus, MD

anxiety-protocol-ecover-rev2 A large and ever growing number of people suffer daily from the debilitating effects of anxiety affecting their quality of life. A majority suffers in silence. Without the appropriate tools and in their attempts to cope, they often resort to maladaptive strategies. Many find solace in the use of various substances including alcohol, cigarettes, marijuana, to mention a few. This goes on for years and years as anxiety is a life-long condition. The lack of user friendly, down to earth tools out there has been a major perpetrator of this problem. The Anxiety Protocol will undoubtedly now addresses this gap. A major strength of this book is its encouragement on the use of modern technology to enable people young and old to research and manage their ailment on line where they will learn self-help skills and alternative strategies. This is an easy to read book that offers a comprehensive, up to date and holistic exploration of the different anxiety disorders backed by the latest research and is extremely well referenced. The affiliated website AnxietyBoss.com enables those who do not have timely access to a family doctor or specialist to find out about the latest evidence-based solutions that can help them deal more effectively with their anxiety.

The book contains six sections divided into 22 chapters. Each chapter is a comprehensive review in its own right. Section 1, Chapter 1 presents a general overview and classification of anxiety disorders citing a comprehensive list of symptoms to characterize each disorder. Each subsequent chapter (2-9) provides a thorough exploration of a separate anxiety disorder, illustrated by specific detailed case examples containing the presenting symptoms, full case history, diagnosis and clinical course.  For each disorder there is a comprehensive list of management strategies including self-help, psychotherapy, pharmacotherapy and goes beyond the traditional treatment strategies for each disorder by expanding on a variety of natural remedies and providing research based information on a variety of herbal and nutritional products. This in itself is a unique and welcomed feature of this book making it very appealing to many. Section 1, chapter 10 provides a brief up to date account of the neurobiology of anxiety disorders to demystify misconceptions and provide a better understanding of the “chemical imbalance” in the brain usually referred to by many but only few can comprehend.

Section 2 expands on the treatment of anxiety with chapter 11 focusing on the psychotherapeutic approach to anxiety disorders. The emphasis here is placed on cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) as the first line treatment for all anxiety disorders, citing a higher level of evidence of effectiveness than any other type of psychotherapy. Chapter 12 explores the various classes of medications used to treat specific anxiety disorders and provides the reader with a helpful table listing all the medications, the type of anxiety they treat and the mechanisms of action. In this chapter the author refers to prescription medication as a “last resort treatment” reserved for the most severe cases or those who have failed psychotherapy. This may sound controversial to those who consider medication in association with or as an adjunct to psychotherapy. According to the author this statement has been explicitly written to educate, raise awareness and encourage physicians to avoid the indiscriminate use of psychotropic medications for anxiety before even trying other strategies especially CBT whose beneficial effects have also proven to be longer lasting than any medication as well as self–help and/or alternative interventions. The book is meant not only to educate about anxiety but also hopes at the same time to change the way physicians think about treatment or resort too quickly to medication.

Section 3, Chapter 13 and 15 deal exclusively with alternative treatments for anxiety with a comprehensive list of practical self-help interventions. Chapter 14 covers an extensive list of various natural supplements that have proven useful in anxiety disorders. Each is described in detail backed by recent studies and placebo controlled RCTs. including positive effects, dosages and adverse effects. Section 4 provides an extensive coverage of anxiety disorders resulting from trauma and stress including adjustment disorders complete with case examples and treatment strategies. Section 5 is important as it deals specifically with anxiety disorders in special population including children (chapters 18 &19) and the elderly (chapter 20) focusing on the special criteria, clinical course and treatment of anxiety disorders in these population with well written case examples.

In conclusion Anxiety Protocol is a creative, innovative and comprehensive book on anxiety. The author presents his readers with a vast array of self-help skills and alternative methods of managing their anxiety including online support via its websites, AnxietyProtocol.com and AnxietyBoss.com. This is quite unique and in keeping with the type of treatment that people usually aspire to but have not been able to access so far. Anxiety Protocol has broken the ice and now makes it easily and readily accessible. A weakness of the book is with regards to children namely, a lack of specificity of the disorders and specifically the ages that some of the techniques could be most helpful and that could also serve as a guide to parents and clinicians. The book’s greatest achievement is the provision of comprehensive alternate strategies including natural remedies and self-help strategies as well as the provision of an affiliated website AnxietyBoss.com to provide specific management strategies and tools putting these at easy reach of most people. The information contained in the book is well researched and referenced and aimed at those who for different reasons may not have access to a well-qualified therapist or physician or those sitting on a wait list. This book now provides hope for them and as such should be made widely available and easily accessible to the population at large as well all mental health practitioners and physicians. There is a lot of knowledge to be gained by reading the Anxiety Protocol. Overall this book is highly recommended as a useful resource in many different ways.

Sheik Hosenbocus, MD, FRCPC

Clinical Assistant Professor

Department of Psychiatry

University of British Columbia

January 2015

 

Note froAnxiety-Protocol-2m the author, Dr. Carlo Carandang: Dr. Sheik Hosenbocus kindly reviewed the 1st book of Anxiety Protocol, The Foundation: Understanding Anxiety, but did not review the 2nd book of Anxiety Protocol, Moving Forward: Treatment Plan, as the 2nd book was not completed at the time of his review. The 2nd book, Anxiety Protocol, Moving Forward: Treatment Plan, is a concise yet comprehensive, 8-chapter self-help course designed to help you eradicate your anxiety quickly, while the 1st book of Anxiety Protocol, The Foundation: Understanding Anxiety, is a comprehensive reference for increasing your knowledge of everything related to anxiety.