Generalized Anxiety: Living In Continuous Worry

A summary of the characteristics of this anxiety-based psychological disorder.

Generalized anxiety

Generalized Anxiety Disorder is characterized by the presence of constant worry and anxiety for no apparent reason. Unlike other types of anxiety, the causes are not easily identified.

In this article we will see what Generalized Anxiety consists of, and how to recognize it.

What is Generalized Anxiety?

Generalized Anxiety presents a different pattern in people’s daily habits and routines ; is present in the workplace, family, academic, health, social, etc. It arises with the manifestation of an excessive concern that maximizes the importance of the problems and makes us see serious problems when analyzing any situation that other people would consider normal, giving more weight to the event than it really has.

It is possible that the symptoms are explained by the influence of some medication, by the consumption of drugs or specific drugs, such as medication to a physical illness. In this case, Generalized Anxiety Disorder is not diagnosed. Generalized Anxiety is often present in other mood disorders.

Constant worry

Concern is the concern that one has before a certain circumstance. For example, that you are worried about the payments and expenses of the month, to get a better job, to pass an exam at the university, etc.

However, the concern becomes pathological when well-being and the ability to manage the unforeseen, and even more to prepare for them , is affected. It is a discomfort that is accompanied by physical and emotional manifestations that are disproportionate to the magnitude of the problem that is faced.

That is, you may be worried about things in the daily routine, but if you only make forecasts they are catastrophic and restlessness torments, anxiety overflows and is pathological.

When anxiety is pathological, the responses are exaggerated and its effects have greater intensity and duration, attention is focused on the fear of the consequences and not the threat itself. There is an unrealistic pressure where problems are maximized and the ability to solve them is blocked, because anxiety affects the ability to reason and the use of tools to face situations. Pathological anxiety occurs in all anxiety disorders.

Symptoms

Some of the most common symptoms of Generalized Anxiety are:

  • Constant restlessness
  • Irritability.
  • Muscle tension.
  • Fatigue.
  • Difficult to focus.
  • Sleep disorders.
  • Social deterioration in interpersonal relationships in all areas of development of the person.
  • Depersonalization.
  • Fear of losing control.

And the most useful physical symptoms are:

  • Palpitations
  • Sweating
  • Tachycardia, choking sensation.
  • Difficulty breathing.
  • Sickness.
  • Shaking chills.
  • Difficulty relaxing.

These symptoms make it difficult for a person to perform in normal life activities. The symptoms are presented in different ways for each individual, what is maintained for everyone is that Generalized Anxiety is a way of interacting with the world and interpreting it from an anxious vision, which is not related to any particular fear as in phobias or panic disorders, but is present in all stages of our lives.

Causes

The causes of the appearance of Generalized Anxiety Disorder can be traumatic experiences, personality factors, genetic predisposition to stress or the environment where we develop. However, objective estimates of the causes will depend on each person.

In some cases personality characteristics such as dependency influence the appearance of Generalized Anxiety Disorder, since dependency requires the approval of others for decision-making and difficulties arise in assuming responsibilities on their own, which result in the anxiety.

Therefore, it is important to identify all the aspects involved to determine the origin of the diagnosis and if it is only Generalized Anxiety, since in most cases it is associated with other disorders.

Adaptive anxiety

Anxiety is an adaptive behavior and is activated when we perceive danger or threat ; the reaction generates an effect on our body and mind that predisposes us to adapt to challenges.

It is natural that we are on alert when we live in a situation that is not optimal, even if it does not involve danger. For example, when crossing the street you are in a state of alert before the vehicles around us; but that should not produce other symptoms that exacerbate and maximize a routine situation.

It should be natural for us to be able to face new or unknown situations where we make an analysis that contributes to better manage worry and nervousness to avoid feeling overwhelmed.

On the other hand, if you suffer from a Generalized Anxiety Disorder, you will be constantly feeling fear during the performance of your normal activities of the day, you will worry excessively and you will present the aforementioned physical symptoms.

Psychotherapy

If you have frequent symptoms of anxiety and you feel that they prevent you from carrying out activities and harm your interactions in different areas of life, this means that you are presenting characteristics of Generalized Anxiety Disorder, for which you should consult a psychologist, who can give you tools therapeutic treatments to learn to regulate your anxiety.

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