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Generalized Anxiety Disorder Symptoms

By Gavin O'Byrne

Generalized Anxiety Disorder, or GAD as it is known for short, is excessive worrying on a daily basis that inhibits one's ability to live normally. Common worries of GAD sufferers include money, mortality of oneself or loved ones and relationships with friends or family or work. They will often go over possible scenarios in their head predicting the worst outcome possible all through the day.

How do you know that you suffer from GAD and are not just worrying the same as most people do about everyday challenges that we face? It's not just a mental state of worry that one feels, GAD can also manifest itself in very real physical symptoms. There a quite a few of these symptoms that can arise like fidgeting, hands and feet becoming numb, lack of concentration, aching muscles, shortness of breath, twitching, sweating, a general sense of unease and restlessness, hot flashes, swallowing difficulties, muscle tension, fatigue and rashes. As you can see there are quite a few generalized anxiety disorder symptoms that can affect a sufferer.

In order to be officially diagnosed with GAD these symptoms listed above must be recurring over the period of 6 months or more. It is estimated that approximately 6.8 million Americans suffer from GAD. People of all ages can suffer from generalized anxiety disorder symptoms, but studies have shown that it is most prevalent in men and women around the age of 31. It has also proven to stem from early childhood and usually increases in severity as the GAD sufferer gets older making it a more gradual process that other disorders of anxiety.

So what is the best form of treatment for GAD? Some doctors will prescribe medication in the form of drugs like Librium or Valium. These work by relaxing the GAD sufferer, but we often see people who become dependent on these drugs so one must be extremely cautious when using such techniques. It is generally advised that these are only used as a short term solution. Another option is cognitive behavioral therapy or CBT. This is when one works with a therapist to try to reverse the negative thought patterns that have formed.

All in all GAD is a very complicated matter that could take time for someone to overcome. This is a deep lying problem that needs to be carefully assessed and diagnosed before the healing process can begin. Generalized anxiety disorder symptoms are by no means a simple and straightforward task for anyone to treat. This is why if you feel any of these symptoms you should see a doctor. If your doctor clears you physically, then you can seek the help of a therapist who is trained to deal with GAD and he or she will help determine the best course of action for you.

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