Usually, if an individual is suspected of generalized anxiety disorder, his or her physician or psychiatrist will do a thorough evaluation to diagnose the patient’s condition. It is a normal procedure to ask detailed questions about the surfaced symptom as well as the patient’s medical history. There are professional and psychological guidelines to help the specialists in their diagnosis.
Only individuals who display the symptoms as included in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), a publication of the American Psychiatric Association will be diagnosed with this disorder. This manual is also used by insurance providers as guidelines to reimburse for medical treatment.
Generally, the criteria include: undue anxiety and worry about certain activities or events for most days of the week, which go on for more than six months; having problems or difficulty controlling your feelings of anxiety; feelings of anxiety that causes distress or disrupt your daily life; anxiety attacks unrelated to other mental conditions, and at least three of the following indications in adults or one in children – restlessness or sleep problems, fatigue, muscle tension, difficulty concentrating, and irritability.
Nowadays, many professional institutions of mental health have brought about the accessibility of anxiety disorder tests to the lay user. With the Internet, you will be able to take a self-assessment quiz to diagnose generalized anxiety disorder in the privacy and comfort of your own abode. However, with the numerous sites available on this topic, you will need to ensure that the test originates from a reputable and reliable source.
Typical questionnaires are made up of true or false questions or multiple choice questions. After taking the test, the results will be rated against a scale determined previously. The test questions are adapted from the professional questionnaires used to diagnose generalized anxiety disorder by professional medical practitioners. You will be able to gain insight to your condition and seek professional help and support accordingly.
One example of a self-test is as follows, developed to assist adults in understanding your conditions. You will need to answer yes or no to the following questions. But keep in mind that this is only a preliminary questionnaire, and should not be used for any diagnosis.
Do you worry excessively about various aspects of life recently?
Do you experience restlessness or edginess?
Are you more easily agitated or irritated than normal by certain events recently?
Do you feel anxious despite knowing the fact that it is unnecessary?
Do you have difficulty focusing or concentrating?
Do you get into arguments with the people around you easily?
Do you take drugs such as alcohol, cocaine, marijuana or amphetamines on a regular basis?
Do you get tired easily as compared to before?
Is it difficult for you to feel relaxed?
Do you experience any emptiness or sadness alongside worry and tension?
Any sleep complications such as difficulty falling asleep, tossing and turning, or light sleep lately?
Do you experience any physical symptoms due to tension such as agitation, chronic stomach upset, diarrhoea, or inability to stay still while sitting or standing?
Is it that the excessive anxiety you experience revolves around topics such as suspicion of disease, gaining weight, separation, rejection or any social engagements?
Do you happen to experience inability to work or get things done due to any or a few of the following: irritability, restlessness, fatigue, sleep complications, and difficulty staying focused?
Have you experienced extreme anxiety that have stayed constant for the past six months or even longer?
The fear of an anxiety attack by itself can trigger an attack. This is true as reported by many anxiety disorder patients and after resolving the “meta” fear, most reported an immediate cessation of anxiety attacks.