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Generalised anxiety disorder (GAD)

What Is Generalized Anxiety Disorder?

A majority of people around the world feel anxious and stressed-out and look worried from time to time. This feeling of anxiety becomes exaggerated when they face difficult situations like going for a job interview, taking an exam, speaking in public, or even participating in competitive sports.
This can make you feel alert and focused, thus helping you to get things done faster and also enables you to perform at your best.
However, on the other hand, people with GAD feel worried and anxious most of the time and not during some stressful situations. These worries are extremely persistent, intense, and interfere with the everyday functions of life.
Their worries include health, work, family, financial issues, etc. rather than just one issue. Even the little things become the focus of their anxiety which leads to uncontrollable worries and a general feeling that something terrible might happen.

What Are The Signs And Symptoms Of General Anxiety Disorder?

It may be concluded that you may have GAD if certain symptoms exist for a period of more than 6 months. These include physical symptoms and excessive worrying to the point that activities like everyday work, socializing becomes difficult.
Moreover, people with GAD may have additional disorders like social phobia and any other anxiety-related conditions. Abuse of drugs and alcohol is also common and patients can even feel physical discomforts like headaches and bowel complaints.

Symptoms include:

  • Excessive worrying
  • Anxiety resulting in difficulty in performing everyday activities.
  • Continuously restless and on the edge.
  • Felt easily tired
  • Hampered concentration
  • Irritability
  • Muscle tension
  • Troubled sleep.

What Are The Causes For GAD?

The following factors may play a role in the development of GAD:

  • Biological Factors: Drastic or even a minute disruption in brain functioning may lead to a person developing GAD.
  • Family History: The chances of developing GAD increases if there is a history of mental illness in the patient’s family.
  • Stressful Life Events: Certain stressful life events like the birth of a child, relationship breakup, any type of abuse can lead to GAD as well.
  • Psychological Factors: Certain personality traits like being sensitive, unable to deal with frustration, general nervousness can also lead to a person developing GAD.

Treatments Available For GAD

Although seeking professional help is the first step, there are 2 main types of effective treatment for GAD. One being psychological treatment and in some other severe cases, medication is also used.