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Anxiety Disorders: Overview

Currently, there are seven recognized anxiety disorders in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5). They are (1) generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), (2) panic disorder, (3) agoraphobia, (4) specific phobia, (5) separation anxiety disorder, (6) social anxiety disorder (social phobia), and (7) selective mutism. These anxiety disorders all share the core feature of anxiety or fear, but the specific manifestation of the anxiety or fear and/or the circumstances that elicit the emotional response vary widely. All of these disorders are found across the lifespan, but some are more common at certain ages. Before discussing the symptoms, history, prevalence, and etiology of each recognized anxiety disorder, this entry provides essential definitions, the historical context, and overviews of the etiology, comorbidity, and ...

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