We are living in a world that leaves us with reasons to worry every day. We wake up every day to meet situations that will increase worry. We worry about our family, finances, our children and even our relationships. Also loss of jobs and loved ones or abuse in one way or the other can result in anxiety. However, there are people that worry over everything. When this worry becomes persistent. It becomes Generalized Anxiety disorder (GAD). GAD is characterised by persistent and unnecessary worry for every little thing that comes one’s way. People with this disorder often expect the worst in every situation. They are very pessimistic about life issues. People with generalized anxiety disorder can get worried just thinking of the day’s activities. This disorder is more predominant among the women and is highest between the period of childhood and early adulthood.
What is Generalized Anxiety Disorder?
Generalized anxiety disorder is a disorder that is associated with one worrying when there is no obvious reason to do so or excessive worry over little challenges. People with this disorder worry over little things including their day to day activities. The end point becomes that it affects everything about them negatively including their work, social life and relationship with people. Their pessimistic nature tends to draw everything about them to the negative direction.
Symptoms of Generalized Anxiety Disorder
There are a number of symptoms associated with generalized anxiety disorder. Note that not all people with this disorder will show all the signs listed below, however, they are prone to showing some of the listed signs.
- Headache as a result of worry
- Excessive tension
- Lack of concentration
- Easily frightened
- Inability to sleep
- Stomach ache
- Panic disorder
- Excessive intake of alcohol
Causes of Generalized Anxiety Disorder
Just like most disorders, the exact cause of GAD is yet to be known, however there are a number of factors that have been proven to increase a person’s risk of developing Generalized Anxiety Disorder. Some of them include:
Genetic factors: Some scientists that have done research on GAD suggest that Anxiety disorder runs in families. This means that if a parent has Generalized Anxiety Disorder, he or she can pass it to the children.
Structure of the brain: Generalized Anxiety Disorder can be caused by abnormal connection of some of the brain cells responsible for emotions and thinking. If they are not properly arranged, it could result in anxiety or tension over unnecessary issues.
Environmental factors: Factors like stress, child abuse, loss of a loved one, loss of important properties or job have been proven to result in anxiety that will develop into generalized anxiety disorder if not properly controlled.
Frequent and excessive intake of alcohol and other addictive substances: Excessive intake of alcohol is prone to causing Generalized Anxiety Disorder. The anxiety tends to be at its peak during the early withdrawal stage and reduces drastically with extended abstinence.
Diagnosis of Generalized Anxiety Disorder
GAD can be diagnosed using medical health screening by the psychologists or psychiatrists. A number of tests can be undertaken to ascertain the real cause of the anxiety. Sometimes you might need to undergo blood and urine tests to check for excessive intake of any substance and your hormonal balance.
Natural and Nutritional Supplements To Help GAD
Generalized Anxiety Disorder requires time and patience to be completely eradicated. You can combine natural and nutritional supplements and other therapies to help control it. Some of the nutritional and natural supplements recommended include:
VITAMINS: Vitamins are necessary for the proper functioning of the body and brain. Since anxiety can be caused by abnormal functioning of the body, vitamin supplements and frequent intake of fruits and vegetables may help reduce generalized anxiety disorder.
KAVA: Kava is known to be a good natural supplement that aids the control of generalized anxiety disorder. It helps improve relaxation and control anxiety. It also reduces pain, helps cognitive performance and enhances muscle relaxation.
PASSIFLORA: Also known as Passionflower, is known as an anti-anxiety supplement. It has been proven to be effective in many cases and in very good for staying calm and relaxed.
MAGNESIUM: Researchers have proven that stress has a way of reducing magnesium in the body. Food typically does not contain enough magnesium hence the need for magnesium supplements. Although magnesium does not control anxiety, deficiency of magnesium can increase stress. Magnesium also has a calming effect and can help with sleep.
Other supplements that can control GAD are calcium supplements and supplements that increase serotonin like 5-HTP.
GAD can be controlled through supplements and some holistic lifestyle changes.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: Here the therapist is expected to interact with the patient in a friendly manner; the aim being to change the manner of thinking of the individual. Since most people with GAD are pessimistic in nature, they are talked into being optimistic and worrying less about situations of life. Here, you will also be taught how to observe and manage your thoughts.
Balanced Diet: It is a known fact that balanced diet is necessary for general body health. It is necessary to encompass all the nutrients that are required for the body in the food we take in. It has a way of relaxing the whole body. Avoid intake of fried foods because they are difficult to digest, are not nutritious and they can also result in heart issues. Also excessive intake of sugar can result in anxiety and stress so limit your intake. In addition, since excessive intake alcohol is a causative agent of GAD, avoidance of it and any other addictive substances can help control GAD.
WATER: As common as water is, it is of great importance for proper functioning of the body. Drinking lots of water helps the body to perform very well.
Also exercising regularly and getting enough sleep can help control Generalized Anxiety Disorder.