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Generalized Anxiety Disorder

Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) is often differentiated from other anxiety disorders by the cardinal feature of worry, which presents as excessive with regard to its frequency, its duration, and the variety of life domains it affects on a daily basis. This entry first provides an introduction to the diagnostic criteria and clinical features of GAD. A brief overview of recent epidemiological findings highlights the widespread occurrence of GAD, followed by information that underscores the harmful consequences of GAD on both an individual and a societal level. To understand the complexity of GAD, issues of comorbidity are discussed, along with a glimpse into why this disorder has historically been misrepresented. Next, pathological worry is discussed in terms of the functions it serves within the context of ...

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