separation anxiety disorder

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Related to separation anxiety disorder: generalized anxiety disorder


a multidimensional emotional state manifested as a somatic, experiential, and interpersonal phenomenon; a feeling of uneasiness, apprehension, or dread. These feelings may be accompanied by symptoms such as breathlessness, a choking sensation, palpitations, restlessness, muscular tension, tightness in the chest, giddiness, trembling, and flushing, which are produced by the action of the autonomic nervous system, especially the sympathetic part of it.

Anxiety may be rational, such as the anxiety about doing well in a new job, about one's own or someone else's illness, about passing an examination, or about moving to a new community. People also feel realistic anxiety about world dangers, such as the possibility of war, and about social and economic changes that may affect their livelihood or way of living. Most persons find healthy ways to deal with their normal quota of anxiety.
Nursing Diagnosis. Anxiety was accepted as a nursing diagnosis by the North America Nursing Diagnosis Association and defined as “a vague, uneasy feeling of discomfort or dread, accompanied by an autonomic response (the source often nonspecific or unknown to the individual); a feeling of apprehension caused by anticipation of danger.” It is an alerting signal that warns of apprehension caused by anticipation of danger and enables the individual to take measures to deal with the threat. It is differentiated from fear in that the anxious person cannot identify the threat, whereas the fearful person recognizes the source of fear.

Factors that can precipitate an attack of anxiety include any pathophysiological event that interferes with satisfaction of the basic human physiological needs. Situational factors include actual or perceived threat to self-concept, loss of significant others, threat to biological integrity, change in environment, change in socioeconomic status, and transmission of another person's anxiety to the individual. Other etiologic factors are associated with a threat to completion of developmental tasks at various life stages, for example, a threat to an adolescent in the completion of developmental tasks associated with sexual development, peer relationships, and independence.

Interventions. Measures to assist the individuals suffering from anxiety are aimed at helping them recognize their anxiety and their usual means of coping with it, and providing alternate, more healthful coping mechanisms that give a sense of physiological and psychological comfort.
anxiety disorders a group of mental disorders in which anxiety is the most prominent disturbance or in which anxiety is experienced if the patient attempts to control the symptoms. Everyone occasionally experiences anxiety as a normal response to a dangerous or unusual situation. In an anxiety disorder, the person feels the same emotion without any apparent reason and cannot identify the source of the threat that produces the anxiety, which actually has its origin in unconscious fears or conflicts.

People with anxiety disorders experience both the subjective emotion and various physical manifestations resulting from muscular tension and autonomic nervous system activity. This can produce a variety of symptoms, including sweating, dizziness, shortness of breath, insomnia, loss of appetite, and palpitations. The source of the anxiety lies in unconscious fears, unresolved conflicts, forbidden impulses, or threatening memories. Symptoms are often triggered by an apparently harmless stimulus that the patient unconsciously links with a deeply buried, anxiety-producing experience. Chronic anxiety can lead to various somatic alterations. The onset of anxiety may be gradual or sudden. Some persons experience incapacitating acute anxiety (as in panic disorder) while others manifest their anxiety through avoidant behavior patterns (phobias, obsessive-compulsive disorder). Anxiety disorders include: panic disorder, agoraphobia, social phobia, specific phobia, obsessive-compulsive disorder, posttraumatic stress disorder, acute stress disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, and substance-induced anxiety disorder.
free-floating anxiety severe, generalized anxiety having no apparent connection to any specific object, situation, or idea.
performance anxiety a social phobia characterized by extreme anxiety and episodes of panic when performance, particularly public performance, is required.
anxiety reaction a reaction characterized by abnormal apprehension or uneasiness; see also anxiety disorders.
separation anxiety apprehension due to removal of significant persons or familiar surroundings, common in infants 12 to 24 months old; see also separation anxiety disorder.
situational anxiety that occurring spcifically in relation to a situation or object.
Miller-Keane Encyclopedia and Dictionary of Medicine, Nursing, and Allied Health, Seventh Edition. © 2003 by Saunders, an imprint of Elsevier, Inc. All rights reserved.

sep·a·ra·tion anx·i·e·ty dis·or·der

1. a mental disorder occurring in childhood characterized by excessive anxiety when the child is separated from someone to whom the child is attached, usually a parent.
2. a DSM diagnosis that is established when the specified criteria are met.
Farlex Partner Medical Dictionary © Farlex 2012
A disorder with onset before age 18 consisting of inappropriate anxiety concerning separation from home or from persons to whom the child is attached
Segen's Medical Dictionary. © 2012 Farlex, Inc. All rights reserved.

sep·a·ra·tion anx·i·e·ty dis·or·der

(sep-ă-rāshŭn ang-zīĕ-tē dis-ōrdĕr)
Pediatric mental disorder occurring in childhood characterized by excessive distress when the child is separated from someone to whom the child is attached, usually a parent.
Medical Dictionary for the Health Professions and Nursing © Farlex 2012
References in periodicals archive ?
Concerning the other anxiety disorder symptoms, the differences were of medium (i.e., Generalized Anxiety Disorder and Panic Disorder) or small effect sizes (i.e., Separation Anxiety Disorder).
Moreover, understanding the long term effects of separation anxiety disorder is needed because information about possible role of it on future psychopathology is a little (Lewinsohn et al., 2008).
Evidence supports the use of several selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors and serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors for treating anxiety disorders in children and adolescents, including generalized anxiety disorder, social phobia, separation anxiety disorder, and panic disorder.
childhood-onset separation anxiety disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, and specific phobias).
More concretely, discomfort was moderately related to separation anxiety disorder (r = .362, p < .05), generalized anxiety disorder (r = .559, p < .05), posttraumatic stress disorder (r = .399, p < .01), the set of total anxiety categories of the ECI-4 (r = .508, p < .01), and to the total ESAP score (r = .600, p < .01).
Separation Anxiety Disorder (SAD) is currently the most prevalent, yet most under-researched anxiety disorder in childhood.
With the exception of separation anxiety disorder and a short list of others, all anxiety disorders may be diagnosed in both children and adults.
Fluvoxamine appears to be superior to placebo for the short-term treatment of pediatric patients with anxiety disorders (social phobia, separation anxiety disorder, or generalized anxiety disorder).
Lavigne, LeBailly, Hopkins, Gouze and Binns (2009) found, at the age of four years, an OR of 3.44 for the association between ODD and separation anxiety disorder. Egger and Angold (2006), in 2 to 5 year-old preschool children, found associations between generalized anxiety/separation anxiety and ODD of OR = 4.4.
Most children with anxiety have more than one of the many types: separation anxiety disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, social phobia, specific phobias (including fear of needles and blood), panic attacks, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), and PTSD.
These disorders include GAD, separation anxiety disorder, social phobias, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and obsessive-compulsive disorder.