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Treating Generalized Anxiety in a Community Setting

  • J. Gayle Beck

Despite the fact that older adults are more prevalent than ever before in history, our knowledge about mental health disorders in this segment of the population is surprisingly thin. Anxiety disorders are a case in point. Although our knowledge about anxiety in the elderly is growing steadily, progress has been slow which has impacted knowledge about how to best treat these problems among older adults. Additionally, steadily accumulating evidence suggests that traditional definitions of anxiety disorders, as exemplified by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM; American Psychiatric Association, 2000), may not best capture the symptom profiles reported by seniors, which could potentially result in inappropriate treatment (e.g., Jeste, Blazer, & First, 2005). This chapter begins by reviewing what current research indicates with respect to the symptom profile of generalized anxiety among community elders, with particular reference to the interrelationship between anxiety and depression. An overview of available assessment strategies will be included, with emphasis on the importance of conceptualizing the patient’s problem using a functional analysis, in order to understand the interplay between specific symptoms in the context of the older adult’s life circumstances.

Keywords

Anxiety Disorder Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Anxiety Symptom Generalize Anxiety Disorder Geriatric Depression Scale 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. Gayle Beck
    • 1
  1. 1.University at Buffalo, State University of New YorkBuffalloUSA

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