Saturday, 10 April 2010

What causes GAD and who suffers from it?

A certain level of anxiety is normal for most people but if you continue to worry it is impossible that you may have GAD or General Anxiety Disorder. This is a mental illness where a person will always fear the worst will take place and finds it impossible to relax. In other words, if you have been prescribed with General Anxiety Disorder, you are always worried even without any reason to be and feel tight all the time. Other symptoms of GAD are pains or aches and exhaustion without apparent cause.
Once anxiety becomes chronic or severe, this may start causing some problems with every day living or activities. GAD may linger for months as a result normal life becomes hard for affected people. This mental disorder affects 4% of most population with women as the likely victims.
Basically, worrying or anxiety is a normal reaction to a danger or threatening situation, imagined or otherwise. All people experience this during a stressful event. A bit of anxiety is normal and can even motivate a person to do his best and respond properly to certain risks.
The exact cause of GAD has not been determined yet however, physicians have identified several environmental, cultural, biological and mental factors. Furthermore, there are studies supporting that this anxiety disorder may run in the family therefore genetic associations might be involved. Certain personality types may also become more susceptible to mental disorders. Other elements may contribute to abnormal anxiety such as a stressful lifestyle and excessiveness in drug or alcohol usage. Even medical conditions like hyperthyroidism, high blood pressure and diabetes can also lead to anxiety and GAD.
GAD in severe cases can make normal living impossible for victims of this disorder because of the tendency to worry too much although there is no reason for this.
The head of clinical psychology at Watford General Hospital, John Spector once mentioned that it is normal to become anxious about certain things like taking an exam but if a person constantly feels threatened and worry about small or insignificant things that daily living becomes affected then he or she may have generalized anxiety disorder.
GAD may affect people who are in their late teens or in their early 20s but women ages thirty or forty are usually the ones who suffer most with this mental disorder.
There are various treatments and approaches for this disorder but the most successful treatment is one that combines both psychopharmacologic and psychological methods.
Prescription drugs although useful in the treatment of physical symptoms linked to chronic anxiety should be used as a treatment for a short period of time. This is so because the tendency for drug addictions runs high particularly for anti-anxiety drugs like Xanax.
Another method for GAD treatment is psychotherapy which should work directly against a person’s anxiety. Relaxation technique is a part of treatment for most anxiety disorders including GAD. In case, these are not enough to control anxiety, your physician will incorporate other treatments such as hypnotherapy which involves hypnosis to control the constant worrying.

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