Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)

 

What is Anxiety?  

Has your worrying grown out of control? How do you know if it is normal or has developed into generalized anxiety disorder? Anxiety, to some extent, is normal and occurs for almost everyone in the general population. However, it becomes more serious when it becomes more difficult to control. When this arises, it occurs more frequently and can begin to determine how someone lives their life. Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) typically develops fully around age 30 but there are many instances where it develops in childhood according to the National Institute of Mental Health. It is well known that women experience GAD more often than men. It is important to note that when anxiety begins to impact your everyday life and in multiple areas of life then it may be time to seek help from a professional.

 

Signs and Symptoms:  

 

  • Worrying about too many things at once 
  • Consistent feelings of nervousness  
  • Difficulty concentrating  
  • Trouble falling or staying asleep  
  • Irritability or feeling “on edge” 
  • Frequent bathroom trips  
  • Fatigue  
  • Muscle aches, stomach aches, headaches, or other unexplained pains  
  • Panic attacks  
  • Somatic Symptoms of Anxiety (does not have to be a full-fledged panic attack)  
  • Awareness of ongoing worry but unable to stop it  

 

 

What causes GAD?  

Similar to many mental health disorders GAD can be genetic. However, there can be external reasons as well. This can look like experiencing a lot of stress or sudden trauma 

 

What Does Treatment Look Like?  

There are so many different ways that GAD can be treated.  

  • Therapy  
  • Medication management plus therapy  
  • Medication management only  

As most know, the best method of treatment for GAD is medication plus therapy. The best method or approach is through Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). CBT challenges you to approach the way you behave and think in a different way. An alternative method that is lesser known is Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT). This approach posits that we will never get rid of our anxiety but we can learn how to deal with it differently than we have in the past. It is critical to think about what type of therapy approach would work best based on how you process and work through information 

 

Most Common GAD Medications: 

SSRI 

SNRI 

Celexa 

Effexor  

Lexapro  

Pristiq 

Prozac 

Fetzima  

Luvox 

Cymbalta  

Paxil  

 

Zoloft  

 

Vibryd 

 

 

How can Harmony Bay Help?  

Harmony Bay offers medication management and psychotherapy services to support your GAD needs. All you have to do is call 855.857.6050 and ask to have an intake scheduled with a licensed professional. Once you complete the intake then you will be matched to a doctor and therapist that match closely to your preferences. It is important that you feel a connection with your providers so that your treatment has the best chances at being successful. We accept many different major insurances and self-pay. Check out the “Care Team” tab on the Harmony Bay website and select your state to find out what providers are available. We look forward to hearing from you! 

 

Published on 1/05/2023 | Written by Harmony Bay Therapist, Anna Hernandez, LPC