Everything you need to know about generalized anxiety disorder
As we have already explained, the line of mental disorders is sometimes diffuse and difficult to recognize when a negative emotion is something normal and when we are on the verge of a pathology and it is necessary to ask for help.
This happens for example with anxiety. Feeling nervous and anxious from time to time is normal with what we have to learn to deal with, but when the sensation is frequent, incapacitating and lasts for too long, we can face a generalized anxiety disorder and it is time to go to a specialist.
What is generalized anxiety disorder?
A generalized anxiety disorder is characterized by a pattern of concern and frequent and constant nervousness regarding different real or imaginary events that lasts for more than six months.
Often people who suffer from it can not describe what causes them this feeling of anguish, which can become an impediment to lead a normal life by becoming the center of their lives.
Symptoms of this disorder
The main symptom is the constant feeling of worry and nervousness even when there are no objective causes for it. Concerns can pass from one topic to another (sentimental, economic, work, family) and always find a new reason. Even being aware of the limited basis of their anguish, it is difficult for people with anxiety to control it.
Other symptoms are agitation, irritability and tension more intense than usual or what would be reasonable in a given situation. They often have problems concentrating and having difficulty falling asleep and staying asleep.
Physical symptoms may appear such as headache, tremors, sweating, palpitations, muscle pain, weight loss and digestive problems.
Causes of generalized anxiety disorder
It is not known for sure what causes a person to suffer anxiety, but it does seem to be a set of several causes . One of them can be genetic , because often several generations of the same family have it.
There is also evidence that certain chemical changes in the brain can lead to an anxiety disorder. Anxiety often occurs along with other mental disorders, such as panic attacks or depression, that affect serotonin levels .
Treatment of anxiety
The treatment of mental illness is never simple and usually includes different branches: therapy and medication . These include antidepressants (tricyclics, SSRIs), buspirone and (short-term) benzodiazepines. These medications should never be taken without medical supervision.
It is also recommended methods for stress reduction : exercise and practice relaxation techniques, as well as modify the diet, reducing caffeine and stimulants and alcohol especially.