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Can GAD Be Cured?

Can GAD Be Cured?

Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) is listed in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5) as a mental illness. The Mayo Clinic characterizes GAD as “severe ongoing anxiety that interferes with daily activities.” 

While experiencing bouts of anxiety is natural, experiencing persistent and debilitating anxiety may be indicative of GAD. An adolescent that struggles with a generalized anxiety disorder will experience the majority of his or her waking hours excessively worrying about something, even when there is little or nothing to provoke it. While the exact cause of generalized anxiety disorder remains unknown, research has deduced that it likely involves a combination of biological, environmental, and psychological factors. However, additional research is required to conclusively understand the precise cause of generalized anxiety disorder. GAD is currently a chronic condition that does not yet have a universally recognized cure. Nevertheless, depending on the severity of a young person’s GAD symptoms, it can be effectively treated.


The two main treatments for generalized anxiety disorder include psychotherapy and medication, and they are not mutually exclusive. There are a variety of approaches to treating teenagers with GAD. At Pacific Teen Treatment, we offer a residential treatment program where we will create a nuanced treatment plan for each of our residents that carefully incorporates the best possible therapeutic methods and are specifically geared to each teen’s personal needs. There are many different types of therapeutic modalities that could be integrated into one’s treatment plan, such as cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), expressive arts therapy, and interpersonal psychotherapy (IPT). Some adolescents diagnosed with a generalized anxiety disorder may benefit from including medication into the treatment plan, in conjunction with various therapeutic methods. The different types of medications prescribed for GAD include selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs), and norepinephrine and dopamine reuptake inhibitors (NDRIs). If medication is necessary, at Pacific Teen Treatment, we utilize the leading experts in adolescent psychiatry, while also collaborating with our resident’s parents both for permission and continued involvement in the treatment process. Every young person is unique and will respond distinctly to the various treatment options available.

For Information and Support 

Every family in need of mental health treatment must select a program that will best suit the needs of their family. When one member of a family struggles, it impacts everyone in the family unit. To maximize the benefits of treatment we work closely with the entire family to ensure that everyone is receiving the support they need through these difficult times.

Seeking help is never easy, but you are not alone! If you or someone you know needs mental health treatment, we strongly encourage you to reach out for help as quickly as possible. It is not uncommon for many mental health difficulties to impact a person’s life, in the long term. Pursuing support at the beginning of one’s journey can put the individual in the best position to learn how to manage themselves in a healthy way so they can go on to live happy and fulfilling lives.


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