Generalised anxiety disorder

Learn to overcome the fear

Fear is a basic human emotion that can save your life. Sometimes, however, fear can be very intense or occur excessively frequently or in the form of constant worrying and thus massively reduce the affected person’s quality of life.
Anxiety disorder are among the most common psychological illnesses: Approximately 8 percent of all people are diagnosed with symptoms of a generalised anxiety disorder (GAS) throughout the course of their life. In addition, more than 90 percent of the affected persons suffer from an additional psychological disorder such as a panic disorder, social phobia or depression.

Based on our many years of experience in treating anxiety disorders, we are able to help you get your fear under control with targeted therapy.

Causes & symptoms

Generalised anxiety disorder: Causes of the constant feeling of worry and tension

Various factors can contribute toward the development of a generalised anxiety disorder. Both psychological and biological factors play a role. The assumption is that some people demonstrate a greater disposition toward anxiety. The risk of developing an anxiety disorder increases further due to stressful childhood experiences, rearing styles, learning experiences or stressful life experiences.

Generalised anxiety disorder: Symptoms indicating an anxiety disorder

Generalised anxiety disorders are characterised by constant fear and worry that something bad might happen to them or someone they love. These fears generally pertain to one or more areas of life (for instance, work, marriage and finances) and past at least six months.

Three of more of the following symptoms are typical:
  • restlessness or constantly “being on the go”
  • easily fatigued
  • difficulty concentrating or empty-headedness
  • irritability
  • perspiration
  • increase muscle tension
  • sleep disorders
Specific situations evoke feelings of fear. This results in catastrophic thoughts and the feeling of not being able to control the perceived catastrophe (sample situation: your child doesn’t come home at an agreed upon time. Sample thought: “My child has been in an accident on his bicycle and is lying helpless in a ditch”). This, in turn, is associated with reactions such as perspiration, muscle tension or irritability.
Since the frightening thoughts cannot be suppressed, less attention is paid to the task at hand. Mistakes are made but are constantly interpreted negatively (“I can’t even do that”, “I have completely failed as a mother”). This vicious cycle of worry, feelings of fear and physical stress reactions are very difficult to break. Even if the feared catastrophe doesn’t occur, the cycle is reactivated the next time.
Depression can also develop from a generalised anxiety disorder if, in addition to the worry and fears, the person suffers from a persistent, low-spirited mood, a lack of joy, interest or drive.

Diagnostics

Diagnosis: How we determine a generalised anxiety disorder

Since the affected person often classifies the symptoms of a generalised anxiety disorder as normal concern, it often takes a long time for them to seek professional help Sleep disorders accompanied by brooding and severe exhaustion often drive the patient to go to the doctor. The most important thing is a precise diagnosis.
To this end, at Schoen Clinic, we conduct a comprehensive conversation with you about your medical history and symptoms as well as a structured clinical interview. We also use standardised surveys. Our experts take a lot of time for the diagnostic process to also understand potential causes and perpetuating factors with you and derive the primary strategies of your treatment based on that.