The ASAP Dictionary of Anxiety and Panic Disorders

GABA - see Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid.

GAD - see Generalized Anxiety Disorder.

Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid (GABA) - An inhibitory neurotransmitter that is widespread throughout the central nervous system. GABA and BDZs can act at different sites on the same complex receptor to produce inhibition in nerve cells.

GAS - see General Adaptation Syndrome.

Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) - irritation of the esophagus (throat) by acidic fluid from the stomach. Commonly called "heartburn" because the sensation is often in the chest area. Also known as acid reflux disease or pyrosis. Severity can range from mild discomfort to extreme pain (sometimes mistaken for a cardiac disorder). Effects can extend to the sinuses and cause sinusitis. Studies suggest that GERD can cause tissue damage and even cancer of the esophagus if left untreated over a prolonged period. Regarding anxiety disorders, GERD may indicate a CCK imbalance; which may be treated with a BDZ and carafate. Also see antacid, H2 receptor blocker, proton pump inhibitor.

Gastrointestinal (GI) - regarding the stomach and intestines. Anxiety related gastrointestinal conditions include gastroesophageal reflux disease, incontinence, irritable bowel syndrome, ulcers, vomiting.

Gene - a segment of DNA or RNA that specifies the structure of chemical molecules, such as proteins, produced and used by cells.

General Adaptation Syndrome (GAS) - a collection of physical and psychological responses to stress.

Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) - an anxiety disorder that is independent of situation. Symptoms are similar to anxiety attacks, but are more persistent and may involve things like worrying about worrying. Depression can often be an underlying cause of GAD and some people may promote anxieties to distract themselves from depression.

General Practice (GP) - regarding medical doctors who provide general medical guidance, diagnosis and treatment. Also see diagnostician.

Generic Name - the universal name given to a medication. Contrast with brand name. A medication will have only one generic name, but may have many brand names.

Gene Therapy - any medical therapy that introduces new genes into cells to treat diseases or disorders. Some forms of anxiety disorders appear to have a genetic basis and may be treatable with gene therapy in future.

Genetic - relating to genes.

Gephyrophobia - a phobia of crossing a bridge.

GERD - see Gastroesophogial Reflux Disease.

GI - see Gastrointestinal.

Ginger - a herb (genus Zingiber) used as a herbal remedy with anxiolytic properties that are supposedly similar to benzodiazepines. CAUTION: Ginger may affect blood clotting.

Ginseng - a herb whose forked root is used as a herbal remedy; anxiolytic and antidepressant. The three varieties of Ginseng are Korean (Panax), Siberian (Eleutherococcus senticosus) and North American (Panax quinquefolius).

Glucocorticoid - a group of chemical messengers involved in carbohydrate, protein and fat metabolism, increasing blood sugar, as well as anti-inflamation and immunosuppression. The most important glucocorticoid is cortisol.

GP - see General Practice.

Grapefruit - consumption of grapefruit may slow the metabolism of benzodiazepine medications.

Group Therapy - any psychotherapy where a small group of people share their thoughts or feelings under the guidance of a psychotherapist. Contrast with support group.

Guided Imagery - a relaxation technique in which a person visualizes or imagines things suggested to them by a recording or counselor. Also see traumatic incident reduction.

The ASAP Dictionary of Anxiety and Panic Disorders