With so many potential causes, it is not surprising that there are many risk factors for the development of anxiety disorders. Traumatic experiences such as domestic or sexual abuse, witnessing a traumatic event, or experiencing a traumatic event can significantly increase the risk of developing an anxiety disorder. Because traumatic events can happen at any time, anxiety disorders can develop at any time as well.
Stress-related to a health condition or another mental illness can often lead to the development of anxiety disorders. Thus, many anxiety disorders are linked to specific illnesses.
Experiencing stress for a long period of time, or having it build up over time due to one escalating problem, or the combination of several smaller stresses can cause anxiety. Some of these events include financial concerns, work-related stress, or a significant life change. Drug and alcohol use or withdrawal can significantly increase anxiety, to the point of the development of a disorder.
An individual’s personality can also be more prone to develop anxiety than others. With genetic factors playing a role in development, being related to someone with anxiety also increases the risk of developing an anxiety disorder.