Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) is a mood disorder which is characterized by excessive and exaggerated worries. Individuals suffering from GAD are found worrying about money, family, health and work. Their worries are most of the time unrealistic and out of proportion for any particular situation. They are easily startled by other people and sometimes suffer depression. This situation is more commonly seen in women as compared to men.
What causes GAD?
The exact causes of GAD are still unknown. Genetics, brain chemistry and environmental stresses can contribute to the development of this disease.
Genetics: Some scientists believe that family history can play a crucial role in increasing the chances that a person will develop GAD. The tendency to develop this condition can be inherited from the ancestors.
Brain Chemistry: Neurotransmitters are chemicals associated with the transfer of information from one nerve to the other. In some people, pathways that connect brain regions do not run efficiently and problems related to anxiety and mood disorder arises.
Environmental factors: Some stressful events such as abuse, the death of a loved one, divorce or many such factors can lead to GAD. Also, withdrawal from addictive substances such as alcohol, caffeine or nicotine may worsen anxiety.
What are the symptoms of GAD?
Generally, GAD makes a difference in the way a person thinks, however, it can also lead to some of the following symptoms:
- Excessive worry and tension
- Being easily startled
- An unrealistic view of problems
- Muscle tension
- Trouble falling or staying asleep
What are the treatment options?
Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT)
It is the most effective therapy and is successful in most of the cases. CBT helps the patient to understand how their problems, thoughts and feelings affect each other.
During this treatment, the main focus is on relaxing the muscles to reduce anxiety in difficult situations. This technique must be taught by trained therapists and learn how to relax your muscles.
In case, the psychological treatment does not help, medication is offered to the patients. Cymbalta is one of the best medicines that are generally prescribed by the doctors for the treatment of GAD.