Symptoms of Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)
The symptoms of GAD include:
- Excessive worry
- Difficulty concentrating
- Sleep disturbances
- Muscle tension
GAD Causes and Risk Factors
GAD occurs approximately twice as often in the female population as in the male population. The disorder increases slowly over time, but the highest risk of onset is typically between childhood to middle age. Those suffering from GAD often suffer from additional mental disorders such as other anxiety disorders, depression or substance abuse.
Symptoms of Social Anxiety Disorder
People with social anxiety disorder may feel a hypersensitivity to criticism, negative evaluation or rejection, difficulty being assertive and low self-esteem. When a person with social anxiety is faced with a triggering situation the following physical symptoms may occur:
- Excessive sweating
- Difficulty speaking
- Difficulty making eye contact
Social Anxiety Disorder Causes and Risk Factors
Three to 13 percent of people with social anxiety will experience the condition throughout their lifetime. The onset is typically early or mid-adolescence, occurs equally in men and women and there is some evidence of genetic involvement in the development of the disorder. Social anxiety disorder often occurs with other mental and anxiety disorders such as depression.
Symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
After a traumatic event, an individual suffering from PTSD may experience the following symptoms:
- Complaints of physical aches and pains
- Drastic changes in personality
- Edginess, exaggerated startle response
- Feeling threatened
- Feelings of hopelessness
- Feelings of shame or guilt
- Feelings of unreality or feeling
- Disconnected from the world or the self
- Flashbacks of the event
- Impulsive behavior
- Social withdrawal
PTSD Causes and Risk Factors
PTSD can occur at any age, including childhood. Symptoms typically begin within three months of the traumatic event, although it is possible for a delay of months or years before symptoms appear. The severity, duration, and closeness of the individual's exposure to the trauma are the most important factors influencing the development of this disorder. Social support, family history, past experiences, and preexisting mental conditions may also influence the development of PTSD. From one to 14 percent of the population will experience PTSD in their lifetime.
Symptoms of Panic Disorder
A panic attack is a period of intense fear or discomfort that typically reaches a peak within 10 minutes and may include:
- Palpitations, pounding heart, elevated heart rate
- Shortness of breath or a sensation of being smothered
- Choking sensation
- Chest pain
- Feeling dizzy or lightheaded
- Feeling faint
- Feelings of unreality or detachment
- Fear of losing control or losing one's mind
- Fear of dying
- Numbness or tingling sensation
- Chills and/or hot flashes
Panic Disorder Causes and Risk Factors
The onset of panic disorder typically occurs in late adolescence and early adulthood. Lifetime prevalence is between 1.5 and 3.5 percent of the population. Panic disorder is twice as common in women as in men and often occurs with other anxiety disorders, depression and drug and alcohol abuse.
Symptoms of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is characterized by either obsessions or compulsions. Obsessions include persistent ideas, thoughts, impulses, or images that can be inappropriate and intrusive and cause stress and anxiety. Compulsions include repetitive behaviors or mental acts that are done with the goal of reducing or preventing anxiety or distress. In OCD, obsessions and compulsions are severe enough to become time consuming and cause marked distress or significant impairment in one's normal routine, occupational functioning, and social life. Individuals suffering from OCD often come to recognize that the obsessions and/or compulsions are excessive and unreasonable, but cannot discontinue their thoughts and actions.
OCD Causes and Risk Factors
About 2.5 percent of the general population experience OCD. Onset is typically in adolescence or early-adulthood, with onset for men usually earlier than for women. Some individuals exhibit an exacerbation of symptoms due to stress. OCD often occurs with other anxiety disorders, depression, or eating disorders. There is believed to be a genetic component in some cases of OCD.