4 Ways to Identify Generalized Anxiety Disorder in Yourself

4 Ways to Identify Generalized Anxiety Disorder in Yourself

Suffering from a sleep disorder does not mean you have an anxiety disorder, but it is definitely a symptom

It is normal to feel anxiety when you face stress in life. Maybe you have a boss that is hard to please or you have a packed schedule and find yourself running late. Say you have a big test or the possibility of getting a big promotion at work. Whatever the situation, stress in life is absolutely unavoidable. But what if your anxiety is more than just a normal reaction to stress?

According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, many anxiety disorders are highly treatable, yet only about one-third of those suffering receive treatment. Think about that: two out of three people with anxiety disorder do not receive treatment even though it is readily available and helps. In many of these cases, the individual is not aware that he or she has an anxiety disorder, so it is very important to be aware and to know the signs.

General anxiety disorder is more than the normal anxiety or nervousness everyone experiences on a daily basis. In general, the best way to describe it is chronic and exaggerated worry, fear and tension. This disorder involves anticipating disaster, often worrying excessively about health, money, family or work. In some cases—if the anxiety disorder is serious—just the thought of getting through the day brings on anxiety.

How can you tell if you or a loved one in Sacramento has general anxiety disorder? Here are four ways to identify general anxiety disorder.

You Struggle to Fully Relax

Individuals who have anxiety disorders struggle to move past their concerns and thoughts. As a result, you are less likely to relax, often startle easily, and have difficulty concentrating. You are overly concerned about situations that are not within your control and constantly worry about them. For example, you may have a fixating fear of having your car break down or having a flat tire. So much so that you do not want to drive or even leave your house.

You Have Problems Sleeping

This alone does not mean you have an anxiety disorder, but it is definitely a symptom. When you do not rest well, your body does not have a chance to recover. This can also lead to depression, paranoia—which goes hand in hand with anxiety disorders—and impulsive behavior. On average, adults need seven to nine hours of sleep to function at high levels.

You Experience Other Health Symptoms

Those with an anxiety disorder tend to feel tired. You may have nausea, take frequent trips to the bathroom or feel like there is a lump in the throat. Some physical symptoms that often accompany the anxiety include fatigue, headaches, muscle tension, muscle aches, difficulty swallowing, trembling, twitching, sweating, lightheadedness, feeling out of breath, and hot flashes.

You Feel Suicidal or Want to Harm Yourself

In some cases, you may feel suicidal if you have an anxiety disorder. This could be caused by a combination of factors such as extreme depression, anxiety and lack of sleep. If you want to harm yourself, there is no need to feel ashamed. Just reach out and get help. Call 911. Call your doctor. Call our helpline. The most important thing you can do is reach out for help. Do not hide how you are feeling or isolate yourself from others; this will only make things more difficult. In some cases, you will need the help of others to get additional perspective; your friends and family will know when you are not feeling well or acting strangely. When you pull yourself away and live in isolation, it is much easier to abuse substances and engage in self-destructive behavior.

It is important to note that general anxiety disorder usually develops gradually over time. It often starts during puberty or young adulthood. Symptoms may get better or worse at different times, and often are heightened during times of stress. According to Psychology Today, general anxiety disorder affects about 6.8 million American adults, including twice as many women as men.

Get Help for Anxiety

If you or a loved one in Sacramento is experiencing some of these symptoms, do not hesitate to talk with your doctor. Do not hesitate to get help if needed. If you feel that you want to harm yourself or even commit suicide, seek out help immediately. If these are potential side effects from any medication you are taking, be sure to communicate this with your doctor. Also be sure to disclose any issues with substance abuse so the proper medication will be prescribed if it is needed.

General anxiety disorder is a highly treatable condition. Hope and support is available. If you would like someone to talk with about general anxiety disorder or any other mental health condition, please call our toll-free helpline. Our counselors are available 24 hours a day to listen to all of your needs and offer practical advice to help you in your recovery.

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