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Generalized anxiety disorder

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Generalized anxiety disorder

Category: Research Paper

Subcategory: Psychology

Level: College

Pages: 6

Words: 1650

General Anxiety Disorder (GAD)
Name of the Student
Name of University
General Anxiety Disorder (GAD)
Background and Diagnostic Criteria of GAD
The criteria for diagnosing an individual with General Anxiety Disorder (GAD), has undergone various modifications. During the 1980’s GAD was diagnosed as a residual category of anxiety disorders, when other anxiety disorders were not diagnosed. Initially, it was defined as the presence of a persistent and generalized form of anxiety (without any organic cause) which lasted for more than one month. The earlier diagnostic criteria for GAD were the presence of at least three symptoms out of 4 identified as typical to GAD. These symptoms included muscle tension (muscle spasms, tremors), autonomic responses (tachycardia or bradycardia, excess sweating, hyperventilation), unnatural & unnecessary apprehensions and vigilance & scanning (exploratory behavior) (Brown, Barlow, Liebowitz, 1994).
However, in 1994 the definition and domain of GAD was put forward in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Diseases-IV, as per American Psychiatric Association guidelines. DSM-IV defines GAD as a form of anxiety disorder which is presented with excess and uncontrollable worries about different life events/activities, which must be accompanied by three out of six symptoms of negative affective emotion. These six symptoms as per DSM-IV diagnostic criteria for GAD are (Brown, Barlow, Liebowitz, 1994):
a. Excessive anxie…

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