A diagnosis is made via a medical professional’s evaluation based on specific criteria.
For a medical professional to diagnose generalised anxiety disorder (GAD), an individual must experience worry or anxiety that:
- Is excessive;
- Concerns a number of activities and events; and
- Is present more days than not for six (6) months or longer.
In addition, the individual must have three (3) or more of the following symptoms:
- Restlessness or a keyed-up or on-edge feeling;
- A tendency to tire easily;
- Difficulty concentrating;
- Muscle tension; and/or
- Disturbed sleep.
Before diagnosing GAD, medical professionals do a physical examination.
They may perform blood or other tests to make sure the symptoms are not caused by a physical disorder or use of a drug.