Skip to main content

BlissMark may earn a commission when you buy through links on our site.

5 types of therapy for anxiety to consider

Anxiety is one of the most common mental health issues in the country, with about 40 million people over the age of 18 managing this condition. However, only about 37 percent receive treatment. Healthcare providers are working to educate people more about mental health, and recently, they began screening girls and women over the age of 13 for anxiety as part of wellness checkups.

If you are struggling with anxiety, know you are not alone, and help is available. There are several types of therapy for anxiety to choose from, and there’s no one-size-fits-all option. It’s about what’s best for you.

Polina Tankilevitch/Pexels

Cognitive-behavioral therapy

Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) is popular for many mental health issues, including anxiety. CBT helps you understand your negative behaviors and the motivations behind them, then asks you to develop healthier coping mechanisms. If you’re experiencing anxiety, a therapist can guide you as you evaluate how your negative thoughts add to your anxiety and develop ways to deal with them when these concerns arise in the future.

Exposure therapy

Exposure therapy is another common way to treat anxiety, particularly generalized anxiety disorder (GAD). This treatment exposes you to the things or situations that trigger your anxiety so you have the opportunity to confront your fears in a safe space. Exposure comes in a few different forms, and a therapist can help you figure out the best path to take if you’re interested in any of these types of therapy.

  • In vivo exposure: This option is perhaps the most common type of exposure therapy for anxiety. It will have you directly face your fears so, for example, if you are afraid of dogs, a therapist might instruct you to visit a friend with a calm dog.
  • Imaginal therapy: This treatment asks you to imagine a situation or item that triggers your anxiety in vivid detail. Then, you mentally walk through different scenarios and explore the best ways to deal with these difficult situations.
  • Virtual reality therapy: Sometimes, therapists can use technology instead of your imagination to simulate a situation. For example, a therapist can use technology to have you drive a virtual car if you’re anxious about driving.

Music therapy

Music therapy involves using evidence-based musical interventions to help people overcome a host of mental health issues, including anxiety. It may look different from patient to patient, depending on their goals, but often this therapy includes listening and composing songs that relate to the emotions you are feeling. Music therapy can reduce blood pressure and stress, boost your self-esteem, and help you develop healthier coping strategies. You don’t need to be a budding rock star to participate in or benefit from music therapy, either — it’s effective for novices and professional musicians alike.


Group therapy

It’s cliché to say you’re not alone, but it can often feel that way for those struggling with anxiety. Group therapy can alleviate the negative thoughts surrounding your anxiety by encouraging communication and decreasing feelings of isolation that often accompany mental illnesses. During this time, a therapist will moderate the session, encouraging attendees to speak about their feelings and coping mechanisms, providing a space for members to lean on one another for support.

Dialectical behavioral therapy

Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) is a form of CBT that asks practitioners to identify new ways to cope with painful feelings. DBT can also help you better tolerate stress so that your anxiety doesn’t affect your ability to live your day-to-day life (related: rehabilitation centers). By working to regulate your emotions, you can start to feel more in control of them. Typically, DBT happens in a one-on-one setting, but many therapists also combine this treatment with a small group therapy session once a week or so.

The most important thing to know is that you are not alone, and anxiety is a treatable condition. Everyone is different so, unfortunately, there isn’t a one-size-fits-all cure. Likely, you may need to try a couple of different types of therapy, and even a few different therapists, to find what works best for you. For more information about the treatment options available in your area, ask family and friends for a referral, request a list of in-network providers from your insurance company, or log onto Psychology Today.

BlissMark provides information regarding health, wellness, and beauty. The information within this article is not intended to be medical advice. Before starting any diet or exercise routine, consult your physician. If you don’t have a primary care physician, the United States Health & Human Services department has a free online tool that can help you locate a clinic in your area. We are not medical professionals, have not verified or vetted any programs, and in no way intend our content to be anything more than informative and inspiring.

Editors' Recommendations

BethAnn Mayer
Beth Ann's work has appeared on and In her spare time, you can find her running (either marathons…
5 kitchen items to make packing homemade meals easier
kitchen gadgets love

Maybe you want to eat healthier or save money. Maybe you want to spend more of your lunch break relaxing instead of running around trying to find food. The best way to reach these goals is to pack your own lunch. Forgetting or not having time to pack your meals is a hard habit to break.

Whether you’re packing your kid’s school lunches or your own lunches, we’ve compiled some helpful tips and kitchen items to put you back on track. Everything below will help make packing your homemade meals easier.

Read more
5 helpful health and care aids to make life easier
A woman stretches her leg with a resistance band

Life can be a whirlwind of hurry and bustle, between a busy work life, working out or being a weekend warrior, spending time with friends, taking care of your family, and countless other life demands. It’s often easy to forget to take care of some of the basics, those convenient items that can make life easier and more enjoyable at home and on the go.

Depending on your life stage and lifestyle, your needs most likely will change. Perhaps you’ll find you can make your daily living better with these five helpful health and care aids and implement them right away.

Read more
5 great ring toss game options for your enjoyment
woman stretching at her desk

When it comes to fun games to play with friends and family, the ring toss game is a classic. What you may not know is that there are a variety of options if you love this type of game. You can expand your horizons with the products below and everyone can have a ton of fun.

Ring toss games are a great way to bring out everyone's competitive spirt and use it in a constructive way. With all of the different and fun options, you are sure to get everyone in your party to play. You can have these indoors and outdoors, so they are super versatile. Pick your favorite design and start having some fun!

Read more