How Is GAD Treated?
If no physical illness is found, you may be referred to a psychiatrist or psychologist, mental health professionals who are specially trained to diagnose and treat mental illnesses like GAD. Treatment for GAD most often includes a combination of medication and cognitive-behavioral therapy.
- Medication: Drugs are available to treat GAD and may be especially helpful for people whose anxiety is interfering with daily functioning. The medications most often used to treat GAD in the short-term are from a class of drugs called benzodiazepines. These medications are sometimes referred to as "tranquilizers," because they leave you feeling calm and relaxed. They work by decreasing the physical symptoms of GAD, such as muscle tension and restlessness. Common benzodiazepines include Xanax, Librium, Valiumand Ativan. Antidepressants, such as Paxil, Effexor, Prozac, Lexapro, and Zoloft, are also being used to treat GAD. These antidepressants may take a few weeks to start working but they're more appropriate for long-term treatment of GAD.