Category Archives for Stress

Generalized Anxiety Disoder

GAD Overview & Symptoms Generalized anxiety disorder pittsburgh

Generalized anxiety disorder, or GAD, is marked by 6 or more months of consistent, chronic worry and tension. Many people with this worry about disaster and could be extremely concerned about different things like money, family, health , career or other situations. People with GAD struggled to control their worries and may worry much more than what seems appropriate . There are times as well when they worry for no or small reasons. Generalized anxiety disorder pittsburgh

A GAD diagnosis happens when someone has a hard time controlling their worrying for at least 6 months and has 3 or more symptoms. The biggest difference between GAD & worry is that worrying tends to relate to only one specific stressed and lasts a much shorter period of time.

GAD is very common in North America, as it affect approximately 6.8 million adults! This accounts for 3.1% of the US’s entire population. Twice as many females are affected by this than male. GAD can occur to anyone and the highest risk of having it is between childhood and middle age years. No experts know where GAD comes from, but many believe there’s a link to genetics and negative life experiences.

Those who have GAD struggle to end the worry cycle and may believe it is out of their hands. Many times, they understand that they worry more than they should , but cannot stop thinking about whats concerning them. Often times ,they believe that if they worry about a situation, that it could prevent it from happening so stopping the worry could be a risk.

Many people with GAD manifest physical symptoms as well. The most common are gastrointestinal issues, headaches and increased blood pressure. It is possible to have a fulfilling life with GAD, be employed and have a significant other.  There can be times when they turn down fantastic opportunities such as traveling and social events due to their disorder. If the person struggles with severe GAD, they could have the most difficult time doing even the simplest daily activities, such as getting to work.


 

Generalized Anxiety Disorder Treatment GAD pittsburgh

There are many different treatment options available for someone who has GAD. At Makin Wellness, we use CBT, or Cognitive Behavioral Treatment, as it has been thoroughly researched and targets certain thoughts, symptoms and behaviors in order to make lasting change. CBT is an evidence based practice, which means that it is scientifically proven to be effective. Adults and kids who are treated with CBT show positive outcomes. Mindfulness is also important to implement with any type of anxiety disorder as that helps the client focus on the present , rather than worry about the futures.

Medication can also be an effective tool if the client prefers to go that route. Normally for GAD, an SSRI , or selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor, is prescribed. SSRI’s help to increase serotonin levels in the brain , which helps balance out your mood. These can be very effective for people with GAD , are non-addictive and usually only have minimal side effects. Common SSRIs are Prozac, Paxil, Lexapro and Zoloft.

Deep breathing and relaxation techniques are very important to incorporate into treatment. Guided meditations, yoga, exercise, spending time outside and other enjoyable activities that encourage you to be present in the moment can greatly assist with reducing GAD.

GAD could occur along with another disorder, such as addiction or depression and is very common. Co morbid disorders would also be treated appropriately with the right and effective options.

If you are struggling with  GAD, call us today at 412-532-1249 to schedule your free phone consultation.Generalized anxiety disorder pittsburgh

Sara Makin,M.S.Ed.,NCC

Sara Makin,M.S.Ed.,NCC

About Makin Wellness

Founded in 2017 , Makin Wellness is Pittsburgh’s premiere therapy and coaching center located in Downtown , Pittsburgh and New Kensington, PA. The company’s mission is to help people heal and become happy again.  Makin Wellness specializes in depression, anxiety, addiction and relationship counseling . Generalized anxiety disorder pittsburgh



How To : Diaphragmatic Breathing

Diaphragmatic breathing is a great way to reduce your anxiety, stress levels and reduce your blood pressure . It’s interesting to note that this is the way our bodies were designed to breathe and that infants do this naturally! If you happen to see a baby laying on their back, you’ll see that their belly moves up and down.

Here’s a great and short video that clearly demonstrates how to do this ; check it out!

Natural Insomnia Relief for Children

Do your child ever have a hard time sleeping? Do your kids ever toss and turn or take a long time to fall asleep?I have an amazing meditation linked below that will help your kid ease their mind. This uses very specific tones that will put their brain in differing states and will calm them down . The “Fabulous Dreams” meditation also contains powerful and positive affirmations that could boost their confidence as well! Share your experience with this below if you tried it out!

 

Five foods that reduce anxiety & stress

Many of you may be surprised to learn that eating and drinking certain things can actually reduce your stress… well it can ! Let’s get right into it and learn about what foods and drinks can calm you down :

1.) Chamomile tea

There is a certain compound in chamomile called Matricaria Recutita  that adheres to the same receptors in your brain as anti-anxiety medications. Chamomile is a natural sedative and can be enjoyed anytime. This can also be beneficial to drink before bedtime if you have a hard time falling asleep.

2.) Green tea

Green tea has an amino acid called L-theanine that helps reduce your heart rate, blood pressure and anxiety. It also increases your metabolism!

3.) Banana

Eating a banana has the same effect as a drug class called beta-adrenergic blockers; these are typically prescribed to reduce anxiety and to lower blood pressure. Just made sure to chow down one to two bananas  and you will feel more calm in about a half hour.

4.)Omega-3s

Wild caught salmon, mussels and anchovies are excellent sources of omega-3 fatty acids. The best kind of sea food is wild caught ; avoid farm raised. If you aren’t into fish, try an omega 3 supplement.  Our favorite is by Nordic Naturals. They test their batches for mercury levels and their fish is not genetically modified.

5.)Dark chocolate

This can reduce cortisol and stress hormones , lower your BP and help improve your circulation. When looking for a dark chocolate, look for one with a high cacao percentage .

 

This is just a few of the many foods and teas that you can eat to reduce your stress. We are coming out soon with a much more comprehensive stress busting protocol that will feature many more things to keep yourself happy and well! Subscribe to our weekly newsletter to get notified when we release it.

 

 

The BEST essential oils for stress reduction

Aromatherapy can be very helpful for stress reduction , but there are so many oils and combinations out there that it can be extremely confusing to know what to use! We love using essential oils and encourage our clients to try it out as well.

Below are some of the best essential oils for the reduction of stress:

      1. Lavender 
      2. Rose 
      3. Chamomile
      4. Ylang Ylang
      5. Patchouli

You can purchase the scents you are most drawn to by clicking here and selecting “retail customer”.  We will do a blog post coming soon about different ways you can use essentials oils! Feel free to bring your oils with you to your next counseling session. Comment below about your experience with essential oils .

Quiet your mind

Do you ever stay awake at night, tossing and turning due to worries and seemingly relentless thoughts? We ALL have been there , when all we want to do is quiet our minds and relax… but this is much easier said than done. Very few of us are able to do it through deep breathing alone ; many others can benefit from using a tool to get to this state. My dear mentor & friend Paul Santisi is the world’s leader in meditations and self development. His meditations are unlike any other I have ever come across, and believe me when I say that I have tried many! My favorite meditation for clearing your mind is called Mind Silence , and you can check it out for free here or download it to your phone here.  This is one I recommend to my clients struggling with anxiety and racing thoughts; I have only received positive feedback about this. I recall my one client raving on and on about how relaxed he felt after the first time he tried Paul’s meditation . He later went on to  incorporate meditation into his daily routine to help keep him sober. Try it out and leave your experience with how you felt in the comments below!

 

 

Do This To Alleviate Stress Fast

Can it REALLY be that simple? You mean to tell me that petting my dog or cat can reduce my blood pressure and relax me?  Yes it absolutely can ! Pets are great stress reducers! It is absolutely astounding what can happen to someone’s mood just from petting their furry friend. Petting and cuddling with cats and dogs tend to have a substantially stronger relaxing effect compared to smaller pets such as lizards and hamsters; however, smaller pets calm your nerves too! Next time you feel stressed , sit down with your four legged buddy and take 15 mindful minutes of petting him or her.  You and “fluffy” will both enjoy it! Notice how you feel afterwards. Try it out next time you catch yourself worrying about your job or missing the Game of Thrones and share your experience below or during your session with your counselor.