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Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) - Symptoms, Signs, Causes, and Treatment

Published on Feb 15, 2018 and last reviewed on Jun 17, 2022   -  4 min read


GAD patients worry excessively and persistently throughout the course of the day. They are constantly anticipating the worst about family, health, finance, and the future. Learn about the symptoms, signs, causes, and treatment of GAD.

Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) - Symptoms, Signs, Causes, and Treatment

What Is Generalized Anxiety Disorder?

Generalized anxiety disorder is a mental illness where the patient has anxiety not just to particular situations but nearly every activity of the day. They are too obsessed with money, family, work, and relationships.

What Is Generalized Anxiety Disorder ICD-10-CM?

ICD refers to the International Classification of Diseases. 10-CM refers to the Tenth Revision, Clinical Modification. It is a code that can be used to indicate a diagnosis of anxiety disorder and is used for reimbursement purposes.

What Are the Causes?

What Are the Symptoms?

What Are the Physical Signs?

How Do You Diagnose?

Generalized anxiety disorder requires psychometric tests to identify the severity of anxiousness.

Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM–5) is a professional test carried by a psychologist to assess the nature of mental health illness.

What Is the Treatment for Generalized Anxiety Disorder?

What Is Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy?

Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) is a goal-oriented short term psychotherapy. It helps to cope up with severe distress. It promotes good emotional regulation. It focuses on current thinking and behavior rather than focusing on the past. Self-help CBT is helpful in patients with mild or moderate anxiety. Non-judgmental attitude will be aimed to be cultivated in the patients so that they tend to develop a positive opinion about everyone. This will make their interpersonal relationship more stable.

The components of cognitive-behavioral therapy are:

Acceptance and commitment therapy:

Acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) helps to reduce the impact of anxious thoughts and panic attacks.

Mindfulness Technique:

Mindfulness practice will help us gain insight into the present experience without any judgments.


Meditative practices help us to slow down the wavelength of thoughts so that we can skilfully choose our thoughts and gain more self-awareness. It should be done on a daily basis. Observing one’s own breath is the height of meditation. Few pieces of music help in attaining meditative state.

Gratitude writing:

Writing gratitude is a powerful psychological practice. It enables a person to write ten or fifteen gratitude statements every day. This practice becomes more powerful when it is practiced twice a day. The gratitude statements can be made for health, relationships, money, job, car, business, etc. In this way, a positive approach can be gained in everyday life. It helps us to focus more on the grateful things in life sweeping away the negative thoughts. It helps to declutter all the distress producing thoughts and feelings. Clarity of thoughts will be attained and the person will turn more goal-oriented. It will improve one’s self-esteem. It might take only fifteen minutes a day.

A combination of both psychotherapy and medications are required in severe and long-standing cases.



Last reviewed at:
17 Jun 2022  -  4 min read




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