Ask the Expert: Catastrophizing

Question:  I’ve noticed that my friend seems to think everything in life is a lot worse than it really is. What does this mean?


Dr. Lynn Northrop, a lead clinical psychologist affiliated with Sharp, responds:


Dr. Lynn Northrop

This is called “catastrophizing,” or irrational thoughts that have us believing something is far worse than it actually is. This is a hallmark of generalized anxiety disorder (GAD). GAD is very treatable with medication and cognitive behavioral therapy.





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