TV Anna’s DNA clue on anx­i­ety

The People - - LIFESTYLE - By An­to­nia Paget

BE­HIND the smiles on screen, pre­sen­ter Anna Wil­liamson thought she was go­ing mad.

At 25 she landed a dream job on a chil­dren’s TV show but was crip­pled by anx­i­ety, with panic at­tacks and in­som­nia.

But af­ter a sim­ple mouth swab test she now knows her men­tal health is­sues are part of who she is – writ­ten in her DNA.

Anna, 36, said: “I now know from the test that I’m sus­cep­ti­ble to stress. It’s the proof, the stamp on the pa­per say­ing, ‘Yes, this is who you are.’

“I think we can take com­fort in clar­i­fi­ca­tion and so I know it’s not just me be­ing bad at cop­ing with things. This is telling me it’s who I am ge­net­i­cally.”


coun­selling. But things got worse when she had her first child, Vin­cenzo, two years ago. A dif­fi­cult birth left her with post­trau­matic stress dis­or­der, lead­ing to a post­na­tal break­down.

But with the help of her DNA test, Anna knows this could be down to her genes and is­sues with her sleep­ing pat­tern.

Some­thing in her DNA means she does not get proper deep sleep. So the sleep de­pri­va­tion that new mums deal with could have driven her to the edge.

Anna now says if she has more chil­dren with hus­band Alex Di Pasquale she will need to be more aware of her sleep.

She said: “The test has of­fered me a huge de­gree of con­fi­dence and com­fort. With men­tal health be­ing so tricky to un­der­stand be­cause we can’t see it, it’s al­most like with this test, this is the vis­i­ble thing we can see.”

It also re­vealed that Anna, who has writ­ten a book about her is­sues, Break­ing Mad, is wired to want to ex­er­cise.


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