Hello my name is Megan Dow. The illness I will be talking about is general anxiety disorder, otherwise known as GAD. General anxiety disorder happens when you have current anxiety and worry. If these things happen they can interfere and can be hard to control which will affect your everyday life and activities. This illness can develop when you are a young child or an adult, it also can be a very long term challenge. As of right now women are diagnosed with GAD more than men are. This illness does not normally occur by itself, most of the time it occurs with other anxiety or mood disorders.
Now you may be wondering what kinds of symptoms and signs you will experience if you have GAD. Many people often experience pain in the back, nausea, trouble falling asleep, unwanted and long repeating thoughts, headaches, emotional distress, irritability, restlessness, trouble concentrating, muscle aches, feeling twitchy, fear of making the wrong decision, constant worrying, lightheadedness, sweaty, and overall, your whole body feels fatigue. These are the main signs and symptoms someone may feel, but the signs and symptoms do vary between child and adult. You also may be wondering what are the causes of general anxiety disorder, well GAD is mainly from biological and environmental factors. Some other causes are from the difference in your brain chemistry and function, the genetics that might run in your family, childhood abuse, significant life changes, and just your development and personality. All of these can cause GAD, but just because you fall under the category of one of them does not mean you have this illness. There is also some preventions from GAD, they include manage your life issues, get help early because it can be harder to treat if you wait longer, make a journal so a mental health professional can see what is causing you stress and what makes you feel better, and last of all you can avoid using unhealthy substances, like alcohol, drugs, nicotine, and caffeine. If you can follow them, then you might be able to prevent GAD.
Overall when someone mentions that they have an illness, some people automatically do not believe them. Some myths that people believe about GAD is that people with this illness do not like to socialize. This is false, people with GAD do want to socialize, but they literally can not. They worry about everything so they do not want to make a mistake, fail, or disappointing others which limits their ability to socialize. Another myth is that if you eat right, exercise, avoid caffeine, and live a healthy lifestyle, your anxiety will disappear. That is also false, some of your anxiety might go away, but your disorder will not disappear, stress does impact GAD, but stress does not necessarily cause it, you would need more help then just to reduce your stress. The last thing I want to talk about is, are there any cures for general anxiety disorder? The answer is yes. People often go to psychotherapy which involves working with a therapist who reduces your stress by teaching you specific skills to manage your worries which will help you return to your everyday life and activities. People also take medication like antidepressants, buspirone, and benzodiazepines. Some other cures that are not fully proven to be true is to do home remedies, like herbal supplements and stuff, but doing this is not highly recommended. I hope you learned something new about general anxiety disorder and thank you for listening to my presentation.