What is anxiety?

Anxiety and feelings of fear and worry are normal human reactions when we are faced with a threatening or difficult situation. Feelings of anxiety can vary from mild to severe, and for most people, these feelings will fade after the situation has ended.

Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD), however, relates to intrusive and ongoing anxiety; where a person struggles to cope with a situation. They will often project a situation to feel bigger than it may actually be.

Anxiety is also the main symptom of many other mental health conditions, including panic disorders, phobias, social anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder.

Signs and symptoms of Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD)

Psychological symptoms of Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD)

  • Feeling worried for a large majority of the time
  • Racing thoughts
  • Heightened alertness
  • Uncontrollable overthinking
  • Feeling tired
  • Unable to concentrate
  • Changes in appetite
  • Feeling irritable
  • Sleeping badly
  • Disassociation
  • Wanting to escape or avoid a particular situation

Physical symptoms of Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD)

  • Irregular heartbeats (palpitations)
  • Sweating
  • Muscle tension and pains
  • Breathing heavily
  • Dizziness
  • Faintness
  • Indigestion
  • Diarrhoea

Signs and symptoms of generalised anxiety disorder (GAD)

Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD) treatment at Nightingale Hospital

Nightingale Hospital is a private mental health hospital in central London. We provide individual, tailor-made and flexible treatment programmes based on current clinical evidence. Patients can seek treatment at Nightingale Hospital through inpatient, day patient or outpatient treatment. Treatment programmes range from group therapy, individual therapy and family therapy options, and include clearly defined goals and can be customized to ensure that they best suit the patient’s personal needs.

We have a range of leading experts specialising in treating anxiety. This ensures that each patient is suitably matched with a therapist or consultant to address their individual needs and requirements. We aim to empower patients with various techniques they can put into practice in their everyday life.

Our treatment approach to Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD)

Our approach to treating anxiety at Nightingale Hospital in London involves individualised treatment programmes based on current clinical evidence. Treatment options for anxiety include:

Psychotherapy for anxiety

Psychotherapy is a method of treating anxiety, to help understand and normalise your anxieties. Psychotherapists work with patients on how past experiences can inform the present and learn how to deal with this. The treatment can take place in groups or individually

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for anxiety

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, often known as CBT, is a way of alleviating psychological distress. CBT will help to learn more positive emotional and behavioural responses to situations and feelings that bring on your anxiety.

Medication for anxiety

Medication may help you to feel less anxious and cope better so that you can start to enjoy life and deal with problems more effectively.

Useful resources

Helping a loved one with anxiety

  • Don’t pressure them to do more than they feel comfortable with, especially when having a panic attack
  • Ask about their experience and try to learn more about anxiety in general. They will feel supported and cared about by you attempting to understand their issues
  • When they are having a panic attack, support them by encouraging them to do breathing exercises (such as slowly and deeply, ask them to count out loud or name ten things they can see with their eyes)
  • Support them in seeking professional help, either through therapy or medication
“In the UK, over 8 million people are experiencing an anxiety disorder at any one time.”
Mental Health UK