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Cognitive Therapy Helps People With Anxiety Disorders

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RALEIGH, N.C. — For people with anxiety disorder, fear can rule their lives. On Wednesday, the WRAL Health Team met

two people who get so anxious

over certain social situations, it can trigger a panic attack. However, they said therapy has helped them significantly.

Even though Jackson Miller and Stephanie Hill are hungry, they would rather not be at a public restaurant. They do not like the attention. However, talking to restaurant workers and dealing with a busy lunchtime crowd is therapy. Something could happen to trigger a panic attack.

"Your heart feels like it's about to jump out of your chest," Miller said.

Hill has a message from her clinical psychologist, Dr. Reid Wilson, to change her order. Her worst fear did not come true. There was no argument from behind the counter.

Then, Hill had to sign her name on a credit card receipt, with people watching. She said that is where her anxieties began years ago.

"My hand was shaking so bad. I couldn't believe it," she said.

However, she did not have any problems at the restaurant. As for Miller, he had to sit down in the booth furthest from the exit.

"I started thinking if I have to go somewhere, I'll go to the bathroom," he said.

Fortunately, Miller did not have a panic attack.

"We're asking them to do things that in normal life you wouldn't have to do, and that's part of what happens in treatment," Wilson said. "You go a little further than normal."

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