Reginald Wilson Jr
The intensities of
law school and interviewing
Reggie discusses the pressures and stress of going through law school and the competitiveness of vying for a job after graduation.

There are several different types of anxiety disorders that range from relatively mild to severe. Those afflicted with general anxiety disorder (GAD) exhibit excessive anxiety or worry most days for at least six (6) months regarding matters such as personal health, work, social interactions, and routine life circumstances. GAD and other anxiety disorders generally consist of the following symptoms:

  • Feeling nervous, irritable, or on edge;
  • Having a sense of impending danger, panic, or doom;
  • Having increased heart rate;
  • Breathing rapidly (hyperventilation), sweating, and/or trembling;
  • Feeling weak or tired;
  • Difficulty concentrating;
  • Having trouble sleeping;
  • Experiencing gastrointestinal (GI) problems.

Anxiety may also present as a panic disorder, a condition where unexpected panic attacks (periods of intense fear) develop and reach their peak within minutes; a phobia, an extreme irrational fear of, or aversion to, an object or situation; or social anxiety, a general intense fear of social or performance situations. While experiencing occasional anxiety is a normal part of life, anxiety disorders are characterized by their intensity, excessiveness, persistency and/or disproportionality to the feared object or situation that often becomes difficult to control or interferes with everyday life. Even though the causes of some anxiety disorders are not known, risk factors are thought to include certain genetic markers and environmental situations that include shyness and behavioral inhibition in childhood, exposure to stressful and negative life events in childhood, certain physical health conditions such as thyroid problems or heart arrhythmia, female sex, unmarried status, and poor health.

Health professionals are advised to diagnose GAD if the three following symptoms presents:

  1. Excessive anxiety and worry (apprehensive expectation), occurring more days than not for at least 6 months, about a number of events or activities (such as work or school performance).
  2. The anxiety and worry are associated with three (or more) of the following six symptoms:
    1. Restlessness or feeling keyed up or on edge;
    2. Being easily fatigued;
    3. Difficulty concentrating or mind going blank;
    4. Irritability;
    5. Muscle tension;
    6. Sleep disturbance (difficulty falling or staying asleep, or restless, unsatisfying sleep).
  3. The anxiety, worry, or physical symptoms cause clinically significant distress or impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning.
  4. The disturbance is not attributable to the physiological effects of a substance, another medical condition, and is not better explained by another mental disorder.