Anxiety Disorder

It’s not uncommon for us to worry and in fact it’s healthy to have some worry about things which are important to us. But when the same worry becomes excessive and instead of motivating us to work, makes us disable and avoidant, then one may have anxiety disorder which needs professional help.

Some of common indicators of anxiety disorder are

– When Anxiety is prolonged and chronic

– When Anxiety create impairment in normal functioning of one’s life and causes significant distress in personal, professional and social life

– When anxiety excessive compared to the stressor on regular basis

Different types of anxiety disorder are

Generalized anxiety disorder

Panic disorder

Specific phobia

Social anxiety disorder

Generalized anxiety disorder

Generalized anxiety disorder is second most common mental health disorder after depression, which affect every 1 in 5 people

The common characteristics of Generalized anxiety disorder is

– Anxiety is Intense and excessive

– The worry is out of proportion than expected

– Worry tends to stick for a long time and despite attempts does not clear one’s mind.

– Worry about a wide range of topic and in common these people are called as ” Worriers”

– This is chronic condition – at least 6 months

– Several stress related physical symptoms can present, e.g.- Headache, muscle ache, Gastric upset etc.

– People with Generalized anxiety disorder like to be in control and very uncomfortable if they are not in control. They are also very scared on unknown and want to know each and every detail about their object of anxiety. Generalized anxiety disorder can be associated with other mental health conditions like depression, Panic attack, Obsessive compulsive disorder etc.

Q. Do I have Generalized anxiety Disorder?

A. If you feel that your anxiety is out of control, more than expected for certain situations, and interferes with your personal, social or occupational life, then it is a good idea to see a professional.

Q. How does Generalized anxiety disorder diagnosed?

A. Generalized anxiety disorder can be diagnosed by clinical history and sometimes self-reported questionnaires may be helpful.

Please do this questionnaire – GAD 7 (link to interactive questionnaire with score)

https://www.hiv.uw.edu/page/mental-health-screening/gad-7

Q. If Generalized Anxiety Disorder is a treatable condition?

A.  Yes, Anxiety disorders can be managed successfully in most of the cases. Although like any other medical condition results vary from person to person. The management outcome depends on different variables like- severity, chronicity, presence of

other mental health condition etc.,

.Q. How anxiety disorder is managed?

A.  Two main interventions to manage Anxiety are – Psychotherapy and Medication management

Psychotherapy or talk therapy as it is called, can help in Generalized anxiety disorders. There are several psychological interventions which can help in relieving the symptoms of anxiety. The effectiveness of these interventions has been proven in different scientific research and a trained psychotherapist can educate people about them. Some of the interventions are- Cognitive behavior therapy, systematic Desensitization, relaxation techniques etc.

Medication management- Several medications have been found useful in the treatment of Generalized anxiety disorder.  Some of these medications (like Benzodiazepines) can be taken as needed and others (like SSRIs, SNRIs) have to be taken on a daily basis for some time. These medications can be prescribed by a qualified mental health provider. Prescriber can choose the right medication suitable for a specific type of anxiety.

 

Psychiatry Houston TX