GAD in the workplace

Essay by MoutonUniversity, Bachelor's November 2014

download word file, 13 pages 0.0



In the world of work, mental illnesses are becoming an increasingly more serious problem especially in the workplace. As companies enter new and global markets, they are becoming increasingly more competitive and have to deal with growing diversity on a daily basis. Due to these factors the effects of mental illness are more often than not over looked. Only once problems occur, for example decrease in productivity, interpersonal difficulties and organisational setback's are experienced are the role of mental illness considered. (Kahn, 2002)

A Sub category of mental illness is anxiety disorders, anxiety disorders include social phobia, agoraphobia and panic disorders, somatisation and hypochondriasis, obsessive compulisive disorder and post traumatic stress disorder, also generalised anxiety disorder (GAD). (DSM-IV, 2002)

The latter disorder, GAD, will be focused on in this study and is considered to be a chronic and also severe form of anxiety.

(Stein & Hollander, 2002). This disorder is characterised by apprehension, a sense of dread and excessive worrying and anxiety lasting 6 months or more. Symptoms include: (1) the individual experiences recurring feelings of fatigue, (2) concentration problems, where the individual may struggle to maintain concentration, (3) sleep disturbances due to excessive worrying and (4) irritability. These symptoms combined with feelings of anxiety cause impairment problems with regards to the normal functioning of the individual. In addition, this disorder can co-exist with another disorder and may be worsened by substance abuse or a general medical condition. (DSM-IV, 2002).

Furthermore, GAD can cause major economic and organisational problems, due to individuals with these disorders not performing at optimal levels in their companies, this can be referred to as presenteeism. Moreover, these disorders result in absenteeism from work and sick leave that is long term and also...