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Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)

Worry is normal, as it helps us come up with reasonable solutions to the problems that we face each day. However, for many, this worry can turn into something more serious with both mental and physical symptoms. When worry goes too far and begins to control certain aspects of a person’s life it is then called anxiety. There are many different types of anxiety diagnoses, but one of the most common is known as generalized anxiety disorder, or GAD. This can also be referred to as chronic anxiety.

The difference between worry and anxiety that is good for problem solving and anxiety that needs treatment is how it affects your day. When your worries get in the way of what you have to do and interferes in your personal and professional relationships, you have a condition that needs treatment. Only then can you go back to living life as you wish it to be. Generalized anxiety disorder does not have to be debilitating, but it often is if it is left untreated.

Generalized anxiety disorder has many symptoms. Some of these are mental and emotional, and others are physical. Together these can make life very uncomfortable and can lead to depression. Some of the more common symptoms are excessive worry, headaches, fatigue, shortness of breath, panic attacks, trouble with sleep, muscle pains, irritability, trouble with concentration, feeling restless, and being unable to think about anything else if worried about something, even a small thing.

Though generalized anxiety disorder is something that can happen to just about anyone, there are some people who are more prone to developing this condition. Those that have had traumatic and unhappy childhoods can easily have high levels of anxiety. Those with high amounts of stress in their lives (either personally or professionally) that do not let up can be at risk, as can those with certain personality disorders. Some believe that going through a serious illness (or has someone close to them do so) can develop anxiety disorders, and it may even be that some are genetically prone to it. If someone in your immediate family has anxiety issues, you may as well.

Therapy, medications, and other lifestyle changes can help someone overcome general anxiety disorder. If you have excessive worries that stop you from living life as you wish, you may want to consider that your worries are more than just normal stresses. Some worry about things that others may not think twice about, or only stress about on rare occasion. If you find you are not doing things you normally would do, or have developed fears you never had, you may want to see someone about your anxiety.

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Types of Anxiety Disorders

There are many types of anxiety disorders out there that affect millions of Americans each day. At times, worry is natural, but when it becomes overwhelming and affects how someone lives each day, it becomes a medical condition called anxiety. There are different types of anxiety disorders with different symptoms and problems, and each type may be treated differently. If you are suffering from any of these conditions, it is important to see a doctor, get treatment, and regain your life. Once you get relief, you will be surprised when looking back and you see how much anxiety was ruling your life.

Chronic or generalized anxiety disorder are somewhat similar in that they can be overwhelming and are usually dealt with on a daily basis. This disorder can severely limit life and can interfere with work and relationships. A person with chronic anxiety is anxious about just about anything and everything. They are prone to excessive worry about things that are real problems, but the severity is greatly exaggerated in their mind. They may also worry about things that are not really problems – but they seem very real to the person with this condition.

Social anxiety disorder is a bit different, but the body can react in the same way. Those with this condition have anxiety in relation to relating to others in social and work environments. In some cases, the social anxiety is so bad that the person with the condition becomes agoraphobic and will not leave the house. They fear that people are judging and making fun of them no matter where they go or what they are doing or that they are going to do something to make a fool of themselves. These thoughts are greatly exaggerated, but they can lead to panic and fear. Most choose to avoid people rather than deal with the symptoms that occur when they go out in public.

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is an anxiety disorder you may associate with veterans who have returned from war, but it is also something that anyone who has gone through a traumatic event can develop. This happens when someone has gone through a severe physical or emotional trauma like a car accident, death of a child, or anything else that causes a person to develop severe anxiety. Those with this condition often have anxiety in relation to the event, and any small trigger that reminds them of what happened. This can be severely debilitating.

Panic disorder can stand alone but may also be a part of any of the conditions listed above. This disorder often leads to a person being prone to panic attacks when confronted with certain situations that cause anxiety. They may have these in public on occasion, and the fear of doing that again can lead to even more attacks. Though panic attacks are generally non-harmful, the physical sensations can lead a person to believe they are having a heart attack or other serious medical problem. The symptoms of a panic attack are scary. A person may believe they can not breathe, they can shake uncontrollably, and they feel sheer terror. They may also have numbness in the extremities, feel hot or cold, and have chest pain.

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