Some of the emotional symptoms of generalized anxiety disorder are a constant stream of worries going through your mind or an overall feeling of dread or apprehension. You may have intrusive thoughts that cause you anxiety that you cannot make go away. You have the strong need to know exactly what is going on at all times, and you find it difficult to deal with uncertainty. There is also the general feeling that there is nothing you can do to stop all your worrying.
The physical symptoms associated with GAD include an on-edge and jumpy feeling. You may have great difficulty falling asleep because your mind won’t let go of the day’s events. You may have digestive issues, including a pervasive upset stomach, nausea or diarrhea. The muscles of your body may ache from always being tensed up.
A general inability to relax is a hallmark behavioral symptom of generalized anxiety disorders. You don’t like being on your own, and you do not enjoy silence. You may have a difficult time with concentration and focus. While many people procrastinate, people suffering from GAD seem to have a higher level due to a feeling of being completely overwhelmed. They may also completely avoid situations that trigger their anxious feelings.
Children also have unique symptoms of GAD. Unlike adults, children and teens do not comprehend that their anxiety is of a concerning level, and they assume that their peers also suffer the same emotions that they are feeling. Because of this, is it especially important that the adults in their lives pay close attention and intervene when necessary.
Children and teens can manifest generalized anxiety disorder through perfectionism, excessive worry on past and future events, social acceptance within their peer group, and a feeling of self-blame for issues completely unrelated to themselves. They also seek continual reassurance or praise.