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Anxiety disorder

  • 10 millionpeople in the UK are affected
  • 15%of those with mixed anxiety and depressive disorder are receiving treatment
  • 21 penceis spent on research each year for every person affected in the UK

What is generalised anxiety disorder (GAD)?

Anxiety is a normal emotion that we all experience, such as in the run up to exams or a job interview. But when anxiety becomes much more severe this feeling can take over and begin to interfere with everyday life.

Conditions under the anxiety disorder umbrella include: social anxiety, generalised anxiety disorder (GAD), panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), phobias, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

What are the signs and symptoms?

For people with an anxiety disorder, feelings like stress, panic and worry are longer lasting, more extreme and far harder to control. Symptoms may also include feeling restless or agitated, panic attacks, having trouble concentrating or sleeping, sweating, shortness of breath, dizziness and heart palpitations.

Anxiety can feel like a spotlight in your mind shining on your deepest fears or worries at all times.

Dealing with anxiety can be very difficult and the impact can be debilitating. Anxiety can stop people living the life they want – whether that means not being able to work, see friends or, in the most severe cases, even leave the house.

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Need help?

Get information and advice on anxiety disorder at NHS Choices. If you're having a mental health emergency find out who to turn to using our urgent help and advice resource.

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