Information about Anxiety
Most of us experience a certain amount of fear and anxiety throughout our lives. In fact, anxiety disorders are the most common mental illnesses in the United State. But, when worry becomes persistent, excessive and uncontrollable, treatment may be necessary to control anxiety.
Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) is characterized by excessive worry and anxiety, even when there may be nothing to worry about. Those with GAD always anticipate the worst will happen, and tend to worry the most about health, work, money or family. This intense anxiety occurs frequently throughout most days, and interferes with the individual’s ability to participate in relationships, careers, and other aspects of life.
Is it stress or an anxiety disorder?
Stress is generally caused by situational factors. An anxiety disorder can occur independently of any outside cause or source. Symptoms of anxiety can also be precipitated by substance abuse.
Symptoms of Anxiety
Common physical symptoms of this disorder include:
- Muscle tension and aches
- Difficulty swallowing
- Sweating or hot flashes
- Trouble concentrating
- Difficulty sleeping
Types of Anxiety Disorders
In addition to GAD, anxiety disorders include:
- Panic Disorder
- Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
Treatment for Anxiety
Anxiety disorders are best treated with a combination of psychotherapy and medication that best fits the needs of the client. Learning strategies to manage anxiety symptoms and combat anxiety-producing thoughts and avoidant behaviors is helpful, while medication may be used to control the symptoms of anxiety.