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Anxiety is a feeling we all experience when we are in a situation that feels threatening or difficult. For most of us the feeling will subside when we get used to the situation or leave it behind; but for some of us feelings of anxiety, for no obvious reason, are an everyday part of life.1 Anxiety is one of the most prevalent mental health problems in the UK and elsewhere, yet it is still under-reported, under-diagnosed and under-treated.2 Around 5% of the UK population have problems with anxiety and up to one in ten people will be troubled by mixed depression and anxiety. Common forms of anxiety include Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD), Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).2 Many people with long-term physical health conditions also have problems with anxiety. These can lead to significantly poorer health outcomes and reduced quality of life.3 Practice nurses are ideally placed to identify those patients with long term conditions who are at risk of anxiety and who may need treatment to improve their quality of life and clinical outcomes.

This resource, consisting of five assessment questions at intermediate level, tests your knowledge of the diagnosis and management of anxiety, based on current guidelines. Complete the resource, including reading the featured articles and some or all of the suggested activities, to obtain a certificate for one hour of continuing professional development to include in your portfolio. 

Learning outcomes

On completion of this resource you should have an understanding of:

  • Signs and symptoms of anxiety
  • The impact of anxiety on the individual
  • The relationship between anxiety and other long-term conditions
  • Screening for anxiety and self-assessment tools
  • Treatment options for anxiety

Reading List

National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE). Generalised anxiety disorder and panic disorder (with or without agoraphobia) in adults: Management in primary, secondary and community care. January 2011

British Association of Psychopharmacology (BAP). Evidence-based pharmacological treatment of anxiety disorders, post-traumatic stress disorder and obsessive-compulsive disorder: A revision of the 2005 guidelines from the

British Association for Psychopharmacology. 2014

The Kings Fund. Long Term Conditions and Mental Health: the cost of co-morbidities. February 2012


1. Royal College of Psychiatrists. Anxiety, Panic and Phobias.,panic,phobias.aspx

2. Mental Health Foundation. Mental Health Statistics: Anxiety.

3. The Kings Fund. Long Term Conditions and Mental Health: the cost of co-morbidities. February 2012