Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD) is a common disorder which is characterised by chronic, excessive anxiety, nervousness and tension. The anxiety is not associated with a specific object or situation like in phobias but it is diffuse, which means there is a general feeling of fear and unease that pervades the individual’s life. The main difference between generalized anxiety disorder and common worry is that in the first case, the worry seems to be out of control and to disrupt the life of the person who experiences it.
Compared to panic disorder, we could say that in generalized anxiety disorder, anxiety is experienced in a less intense manner but lasts much longer, often interfering with daily functioning.
The following list is indicative of the main symptoms that you are likely to be experiencing if you have been diagnosed with the disorder. These symptoms vary from person to person and their intensity fluctuates.
• Excessive worry beyond your control
• Persistent feelings of anxiety and distress
• Constant thoughts about things that cause you stress
• Difficulty to tolerate uncertainty about the future (you always want to know what will happen)
• Difficulty to relax or unwind
• Feeling of tension in the body / muscles’ tension
• Abdominal distress, nausea
• Insomnia or difficulty to sleep because your mind cannot stop thinking
• Difficulty in concentrating
• Procrastination because you feel overwhelmed
• Avoidance of situations that cause you anxiety
Most surveys show that the majority of people with generalized anxiety disorder find it difficult to tolerate uncertainty about the future, which is essentially an integral part of life. They also seem to believe that to some extent, their worry may be useful to them. At the same time, people fear that excessive worry could drive them «crazy». For these reasons, although people with GAD fear the consequences that constant worry could have on their life, they find it extremely hard to quit worrying. Treatment gradually addresses the clients’ beliefs about worry and anxiety, helps them build greater tolerance for uncertainty and finally guides them to adopt specific strategies to resolve their issues.
If you are suffering from constant worry and anxiety and would like to discuss how I could help you in more detail, please contact me to book an appointment at my Limassol Practice.