Generalized Anxiety Disorder
It is one of the most common mental disorders in modern society. It is characterized by excessive anxiety and worry about several events and activities, such as work or school performance to the extent that the person feels that it is difficult to control it. Anxiety and worry are often accompanied by “stretched” nerves, feeling that the person sitting on “hot coals”, fatigue, difficulty to concentrate, irritability, muscle tension and sleep disorder.
It is characterized by recurring unexpected panic attacks with an intermediate persistent concern that there will be more attacks.
Panic attack is defined as a discrete period of intense fear and discomfort during which various physical symptoms, such as tachycardia – palpitations, sweating, trembling, shortness of breath – suffocation, chest pain, nausea, abdominal discomfort, dizziness and numbness, appear and peak within a short period of time. During the panic attack the person may have fear of imminent loss of control, fear of death or fainting. Panic disorders are often accompanied by agoraphobia.
Phobia is defined as the intense and persistent fear, that is excessive and released by the presence or anticipation of an object or situation, such as animals, air travel, injections, blood view, heights, etc.
Two separate categories of phobias are social phobia and agoraphobia.
Social phobia is characterized by persistent fear of the person for one or more social situations or situations in which the person should act in public or they are exposed to unfamiliar people and potential criticism. The person fears that they will act in a way (or that they will express anxiety symptoms) that will humiliate them or cause them to feel embarrassed.
In the case of agoraphobia, the person expresses intense fear and anxiety when in places where escape is difficult or where help would be impossible if panic attack symptoms appeared. Such places or situations may be travelling on public transport such as buses, enclosed spaces such as cinemas, as well as to be in queues or being unaccompanied outside the house.