There isn’t a definitive amount of time that an anxiety disorder lasts. Anxiety is a feeling of fear or worry that comes and goes depending on the situation or experiences someone has. Each occurrence of anxiety could vary in length for different people depending on their unique, individual circumstance. Some may have anxious episodes that last hours while others may only experience the effects of the disorder for a few minutes.

Each person’s anxiety is also spurred on by different causes. One person might have social anxiety and experience extreme distress while in social settings or afterward for hours or days. Another person who has post-traumatic stress disorder, which is another type of anxiety disorder, could feel anxious for anywhere between a few hours or a day after recounting a traumatic memory.

Does Anxiety Ever Go Away?

There is no absolute way to end anxiety. People cannot fix how their brain operates with a procedure the same way someone can cure a broken bone, a torn ligament or a weak heart.

Someone may experience severe anxiety during certain events of their life, like during pregnancy. Anxiety is usually caused by a combination of genetics and environmental factors, with the latter being the primary cause of the disorder. Since environmental factors are difficult to control, anxious symptoms can remain prevalent for long periods of time.

People also can go lengths of time without feeling any anxiety due to using effective coping strategies and avoiding situations that could cause distress. If they have a history of anxiety or are prone to it due to genetics, then they’re likely to experience anxiety when future stressful situations arise.

If not properly managed, your anxiety could persist for the majority of your life. However, with proper assistance from mental health professionals or medication you can diminish the effects of your anxiety and prevent it from controlling your life.

Many people turn to drugs or alcohol to manage their anxious feelings. Doing so can provide temporary relief from anxiety but misusing substances can worsen the disorder after their effects wear off. If you struggle with anxiety and substance abuse as co-occurring disorders, contact The Recovery Village to learn about treatment options.


Folk, Jim and Folk, Marilyn, BScN. “Anxiety Attack Symptoms.” Anxiety Centre, January 1, 2019. Accessed February 20, 2019.