Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)

Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) is a blanket term used to label a variety of symptoms which include: being in a near constant state of restlessness, being easily fatigued, having difficulty concentrating, being irritable, having muscle tension, and having disturbed sleep. Importantly, those who have GAD do not have panic attacks, phobias, or OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder)

To be considered as Generalized Anxiety Disorder, or GAD, these symptoms should have been present for sometime. This type of anxiety can vary in degrees of intensity and length.

Generalized Anxiety Disorder is a label which helps medical professionals classify symptoms and patients. It is not necessarily helpful to you other than to understand what they mean by it. Those with GAD often find that the constant worrying interrupts their personal, professional or social lives.

According to the Anxiety and Phobia Workbook (by Edmund J Bourne) people who suffer from GAD tend to have five underlying basic fears:

  • Fear of losing control
  • Fear of not being able to cope
  • Fear of death, disease and sickness
  • Fear of failure
  • Fear of rejection and abandonment

Some situations can draw out these fears and magnify them, such as pressure
at work, a broken marriage, bereavement or a failure.

It’s important to become completely aware of all of your own symptoms
and to tackle them with the help of a doctor or
therapist. But as ever, self-treatment is often very important.

What about treatment?

The chances of successful treatment are good. Drugs and therapies can be used where appropriate and other alternative therapies and cures can be successful. Drug treatment might be unnecessary, and it is advisable to do online research before embarking on a course of anxiolytic medication. Unless your symptoms are incredibly severe, you are more likely to benefit from lifestyle changes, relaxation techniques, and some form of therapy.

What other information might be helpful?

Why not read the section on drugs and the section on CBT

Leave a Reply