Mental Health

Am I having a Panic Attack?

5 Symptoms of a Panic Attack: Mental, Physical, Causes, and Treatment

Have you ever been in a situation where you experience overwhelming fear or anxiety? Sometimes, you are not really doing anything. Maybe you are in a conversation with someone or simply alone doing nothing. The truth is that you could be experiencing a panic attack. This can be a scary thing if you have never experienced it before. When a panic attack triggers, most people have no idea what is happening. Below I am going to share 5 symptoms of a panic attack, so you understand what is going on the next time it happens. It is also good to pass this information on to friends and family, so they also know.

(H2 heading) What are the 5 Symptoms of a Panic Attack?

Here are 5 symptoms of a panic attack that you should be aware of:

 1. Sudden and repeated panic attacks of overwhelming anxiety and fear

2. A feeling of being out of control, or a fear of death or impending doom during a panic attack

3. An intense worry about when the next panic attack will happen

4. A fear or avoidance of places where panic attacks have occurred in the past

5. Physical symptoms during a panic attack, such as: ▪ Pounding or racing heart ▪ Sweating ▪ Chills ▪ Trembling ▪ Difficulty breathing ▪ Weakness or dizziness ▪ Tingly or numb hands ▪ Chest pain ▪ Stomach pain or nausea

Mentally Experiencing a Panic Attack

Anyone can experience a panic attack. They are not specific to race, gender, or sexual preference. If you are human and have a heartbeat, you can experience a panic attack. Below is the definition for a panic attack.

A panic attack is a sudden episode of intense fear or anxiety and physical symptoms, based on a perceived threat rather than imminent danger.

It is common for people having a panic attack to believe they are losing control, having a heart attack, or dying.

Physically Experiencing a Panic Attack

Panic attacks often include physical symptoms that might feel like a heart attack, such as trembling, tingling, or rapid heart rate.

Cause of Panic Attacks

runs in families, but no one knows for sure why some family members have it while others don’t. Researchers believe that several parts of the brain and certain biological processes may play a crucial role in fear and anxiety.

Some have said that panic attacks are like “false alarms” where our body’s typical survival instincts are active either too often, too strongly, or some combination of the two.

  • Family history of panic attacks or panic disorder.
  • Major life stress, such as the death or serious illness of a loved one.
  • A traumatic event, such as sexual assault or a serious accident.
  • Major changes in your life, such as a divorce or the addition of a baby.
  • Smoking or excessive caffeine intake.

Treating Panic Attacks

The first step to effective treatment is

  • to get a diagnosis, usually from a mental health professional.
  • Psychotherapy
  • Find a mental health therapist to help you. Psychotherapy (or talk therapy) is an important part of treating panic attacks. This professional is trained to help you understand panic attacks and what triggers them along with helping you understand where your thoughts play a part and how to make the necessary thought changes needed.

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  • Medication
  • Antidepressants, such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) and serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs)
  • Beta-blockers
  • Anti-anxiety medications, such as benzodiazepines

Please consult a physician or psychiatrist about medications. These are professionals trained in prescribing the proper medication. Never self-diagnose or self-medicate!

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