Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)

Those suffering from generalized anxiety disorder experience anxiety, fear, and distress commonly related to school or work performance, children’s safety, or finances. Excessive worry is a typical symptom of GAD that can cause changes in sleep patterns, restlessness, difficulty concentrating, irritability, and muscle tension. The anxiety and excessive worry can result in marked impairment in functioning related to school, work, and maintaining relationships. Those with GAD might describe themselves as “worry warts.” Exposure response prevention treatment is still used when treating GAD. The client will be exposed to whatever they avoid. For example, the client who worries about money might avoid looking at their bank accounts or creating a budget. The exposure would be to look at the account and create a budget. The opposite could be true. The client could be checking their accounts and stocks multiple times a day. The exposure would be to check those items less over time. Additionally, worry scripts are needed to treat GAD. Worry scripts are narratives the provider writes that involve the worst-case scenario of what the client fears. Then, the client reads the script repeatedly until the script becomes boring. GAD is usually simple to treat as long as the client is compliant. Sometimes, medication is needed.

To learn more about exposure response prevention treatment (ERP), please click here.

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Treatment is available in person, via video conference, and over the phone for patients in Florida and New York. In-person sessions are available in Tampa, Florida. 

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