What do you know about generalized anxiety disorder? GAD or called generalized anxiety disorder is a type of anxiety disorder that is characterized by uncontrollable, irrational, and excessive worry and apprehensive expectation about activities or events. The people with GAD are often overly concerned about the daily matters like work difficulties, interpersonal relationship, friendship, family problems, death, money, health troubles with no obvious reasons. This will interfere with their daily functioning like at work or school, relationships, social activities. It is not like a phobia, the anxiety of GAD is a general feeling of the fear or unease that covers your whole life. It is estimated that about 2 percent of the adults in Europe experience GAD, in which the women with GAD are twice as much as the men. Let’s read the following writing to know more about this disorder.
What Are The Symptoms Of GAD? Causes And Treatments You Should Know
I. Signs And Symptoms Of Generalized Anxiety Disorder
Not all the people with GAD will experience the same signs and symptoms of GAD. However, they often have the symptoms that are a combination of physical, behavioral, and emotional ones. These symptoms will fluctuate and get worse when they are stressful. So, what are the symptoms of GAD? Let’s see the following signs and symptoms of GAD:
1. Physical Signs And Symptoms
When you consider GAD, the first thing you need to notice is about physical signs and symptoms. A person with generalized anxiety disorder often feels tense and have body aches or muscle tightness. Many people think this is only a signs of an overloading body. However, you should notice other signs and symptoms because it may be the signs of GAD. Besides that, the people with GAD also have difficulty in staying or falling asleep. They also feel jumpy, restless, and edgy. Some other physical symptoms are stomach problems, diarrhea, sweating, headaches, and nausea. Some people even experience trembling feeling about something. When someone experiences these physical symptoms, you should notice if they have the following emotional and behavioral symptoms.
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2. Behavioral Signs And Symptoms
Along with the physical signs and symptoms, behavioral symptoms need knowing well. The people with generalized anxiety disorder often experience the common behavioral symptoms. They cannot be by themselves, enjoy quiet time and relax naturally. They also have difficulty in focusing on things. Even they avoid the situations that can make them anxious. All the behavioral symptoms are unspecific and they can be misunderstood with other disorders
3. Emotional Signs And Symptoms
As we mentioned on the above, symptoms of GAD are a combination of emotional, behavioral, and physical symptoms. Thus, emotional signs and symptoms are the important part to diagnose this order. The people with GAD always have constant worries about something and their anxiety is uncontrollable. They don’t know what they should do to stop the worrying. Anything and anyone also makes them anxious. Although they always try to stop thinking, they cannot do it. Another symptom of GAD is their inability to tolerate uncertainty. Any uncertainty makes them anxious. So they need to know the future well to limit the feeling of anxiety in their head.
4. Signs And Symptoms Of GAD In Children And Teenagers
Those are some common signs and symptoms that can happen to the people with generalized anxiety disorder. Normally, they often experience many symptoms among all the symptoms. However, GAD can happen to the children and teens. Their anxiety often focuses on school performance, personal abilities, past behaviors, future events, and family matters. They have no idea that their worrying is not proportionate to them. You can see that there are many other symptoms of GAD in children along with many symptoms in adults. Their common fear is about the situations in the future or about making mistakes. They spend too much of time to do homework. They are also the perfectionist with excessive self-criticism. The children with GAD always lack self-confidence and need for frequent approval and reassurance.
For the children and teens with GAD, the adults need to notice and recognize the signs and symptoms of this disease carefully. Since then, you will have the proper treatments. The above information is the answer to the question: what are the symptoms of GAD. And the next, you need to know it causes.
II. Causes Of Generalized Anxiety Disorder
In fact, the exact causes of GAD are not known completely. However, there are some common factors that can affect the development of the disease. They are genetics, environmental factors, and brain chemistry. How do they affect the people?
Some study showed that genetics plays an important part in increasing the ability to develop GAD in children. Or it can be said that families are also a factor that can cause GAD. According to the expert, about a third of the people with GAD is attributed to genes.
2. Environment Factors
Some factors that are stressful events and trauma are the reasons that cause GAD in children and adults. Any bad thing like changing schools or jobs, divorce, the death, abuse can have the bad influence on the people and may lead to generalized anxiety disorder. It can get worse and worse if they are stressful. Even the withdrawal or use of some addictive substances like nicotine, caffeine, or alcohol can make the disorder worse. In a study in 1990’s, it is also found that the long-term use of alcohol and benzodiazepines can lead to or worsen the disorder.
3. Brain Chemistry
Generalized anxiety disorder is a type of disease that is associated with abnormal functioning of certain nerve cell pathways in the brain. These pathways are involved in emotion and thinking. If they are working inefficiently, they can lead to the problems related to the anxiety or mood.
III. Treatment For GAD
1. Get Moving
Exercise is always an effective treatment for many diseases and disorders including generalized anxiety disorder. Doing exercises regularly is very useful for reducing the tension, stress, improving the physical and mental energy in your body, bring an excited feeling or happiness. By doing exercise regularly, you can focus on your body instead of your constant anxiety. In order to get the desired result, you should try to have the physical activities for at least 30 minutes per day. The exercises that can use both your legs and arms are often recommended. You can choose some exercises like dancing, swimming, walking, or running to go. Remember to notice your feelings or sensations when exercising. They will help you move your thought more effectively.
2. Practice Relaxation Techniques
Along with getting moving, strengthening the relaxation response to your body is also an effective tactic to relieve your worries. You can consider some relaxation techniques like deep breathing, meditation, progressive muscle relaxation. The progressive muscle relaxation can help you get your worries out of your mind. Or deep breathing is very useful for reducing the symptoms of the disorder and makes you calm down. Meditation is responsible for improving the activities of the brain that are very helpful for your feelings of joy and serenity.
3. Learn How To Calm Down
Learning how to calm down quickly is also a way to treat this order thanks to controlling the symptoms of GAD. A good way to calm down should be an incorporation of the physical sense including touch, movement, taste, smell, hearing, and vision. You can try some activities such as going for a walk, dancing, jumping, and staying outside in the cool breeze, enjoying your favorite foods or drinks, using your favorite perfume, singing a favorite tune, calling a friend, taking in a beautiful sightseeing or something like that. All these activities can help you self-soothe effectively.
4. Change Your Lifestyle
Your lifestyle is also a factor that affects your GAD. So, in addition to learning how to calm down, regular exercises, and relaxation techniques, balancing your lifestyle with the healthy habits can help you keep the symptoms of GAD at bay effectively. You can start changing your life with your eating habits. You should not ignore your breakfast and eat more foods that contain complex carbohydrates like vegetables, fruits, and grains. They can help boost serotonin with its calming effects.
Besides that, you should limit caffeine and sugar in your diet by cutting back on caffeinated beverages like coffee, sugary snacks, and desserts. Caffeine can lead to increasing anxiety and interfere with your sleep. Seriously, it can contribute to provoking panic attacks. Refined sugar found in processed foods is also a factor that may affect your emotion. In addition, avoiding nicotine and alcohol is a necessary change. They also make the symptoms of GAD get worse.
Getting enough sleep also needs noticing more carefully. A deep sleep can help you keep you active to balance your emotion and deal with anxiety.
In pharmaceutical treatments for GAD, the medications are often used including SSRI, antidepressants, buspirone, benzodiazepines, pregabalin, and gabapentin. Some other drugs are also prescribed to the patients such as psychiatric drugs like SNRIs, TCAs, and some drugs including hydroxyzine, propranolol, clonidine, guanfacine, prazosin.
The above are some information you should know about symptoms of GAD as well as its causes and treatments. It can appear in children and adults. So, if you are wondering whether anyone you love can be experiencing this order or not, this writing may be useful for you. If any, you need to notice carefully and take care of them much more. In case you have any idea or question related to this writing, you can leave your comment and we will reply for you soon. Finally, visit our website, if you want to find more useful information.
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