Panic Attack And Anxiety
What Is A Panic Attack?
A panic (or anxiety) attack is a sudden feeling of overwhelming anxiety and fear. Your heart starts to race and you have the feeling you cannot breathe or might even faint. Sometimes you can even get the feeling you will die, have a heart attack or go crazy. You feel as if you are literally about to go “out of your own body”.
Panic attacks do not wait for you to be in the comfort of your home.
They can occur everywhere. At home, during shopping, at a concert, even during holidays when you think your stresslevels are low.
If you neglect to treat these panic attacks they can lead to even more serious problems like panic disorders, social disconnection, and severe depressions. Even the most normal daily activities will become impossible to do.
The good news is that panic attacks can be cured. The sooner you find help the better it is. Neglecting panic attacks will only make things worse. You are not being childish if you seek help!
With good treatment, you will begin to understand your own body and mind. You will be able to reduce or even completely eliminate your panic attacks and have a life without stress.
Panic Attacks and Anxiety Symptoms
You are having a panic attack if you are overcome by intense fear and discomfort without being in a stressful situation. You are having an anxiety attack if there is a stressful situation that is the cause of your anxiety (fear of heights for example).
If you are experiencing either a panic or anxiety attack you will have at least 2 of the following symptoms at the same time:
- Trembling or excessive shaking
- A racing, pounding heart
- The feeling you are choking
- Shortness of breath
- Chest pain
- Stomach discomfort
- Nausea or a dizzy lightheaded feeling
- The feeling you are about to faint
- Hot or cold flashes
- The feeling you are being out of body
- A great fear of losing control or going crazy
- The feeling you are about to die
A lot of these symptoms are very close to those a person with a heart disease has. Breathing problems, a racing pounding heart, hot flashes etcetera are all very similar to someone having a heart attack. Please note that if you are having a panic or anxiety attack there is nothing wrong with your heart, it will not stop. Try and make sure to think of that even when it is very hard to have a clear mind at that time. It will help you “get back to normal” if you can convince your own brain that there is nothing physically wrong. Try and focus on breathing with your stomach.
Some of you reading right now might have been visiting a doctor more than once because you are convinced there is something seriously wrong with your heart or even lungs. A panic attack or anxiety attack is extremely frightening but it is not a life-threatening disease. Keep that in mind.
That being said, it IS a good idea to consult a doctor about your disease. Do not be afraid or embarrassed to tell a friend, your wife, your husband or someone you trust. You will be amazed at how many people have the same problem in a somewhat lesser degree. They will not only understand you but its also relax your mind to know someone knows about why you might be behaving strangely. If you feel an attack coming, just tell them. You will probably ease the attack, or even prevent it from being a long one.
Do not suffer in silence if you are having the symptoms as described above. Distancing yourself from family, friends or even strangers is not going to help. It will only hurt your progress in dealing with or eliminating panic and anxiety attacks.
Almost 80% of the people suffering from these attacks do not know they have a real disease and that it is a very highly treatable disorder.
Panic Attack vs Anxiety Attack
Panic attack and anxiety Attack are very similar, but also have some distinct differences. The biggest difference is:
An anxiety attack is a reaction to a stressful event. A panic attack is unprovoked and unpredictable.
The Anxiety Attack.
For example - You come home late at night and everything is still dark. You think you hear footsteps. Another good example of an anxiety attack is fear of heights. When you are stepping out of an elevator and you did not know the floors are made of glass and you look down. You will probably try to kneel or sit or get on all 4’s to try and reduce the anxiety.
Those 2 examples are called anxiety attacks. Your heart will begin to pound or race. You will get hot or cold flashes and you will have a feeling you cannot control your body anymore. In extreme cases you will even think you will faint.
Both of these examples are caused by a stressful event you did not expect. When you find out the sound of the footsteps is just the wind blowing a curtain, or when you get back into the elevator the anxiety will go away.
In short: anxiety attacks are caused by a stressful event, they are short in duration and will go away when the stressful situation has subsided.
The Panic Attack.
As said before, an anxiety attack is a reaction to a stressful event. A panic attack, on the other hand, comes without warning or event that could have any cause or reason for panic.
It is totally unpredictable where, when or why you have a panic attack. It can happen in the comfort of your home, in a train, during a concert, sitting on a train, walking the streets, even when relaxing on a beach on a holiday. There does not have to be any provocation for you to get a panic attack.
The symptoms, although very slightly, can also be different. The most common symptoms are the feeling you are losing control over your body, shortness of breath, a racing or pounding heart, hot flashes, a feeling of dying or fainting, dizziness and nausea, chest and/or stomach pain.
A panic attack and an anxiety attack are both to be taken seriously, do not get me wrong. But a panic attack is more lasting. Untreated they can become more frequent or more extreme. This is because there is no obvious reason for it to occur. The more times you get a panic attack or the more frequent they occur the more difficult it will be to have a normal life.
Because they are extremely terrifying you will often begin to worry about when you will have “the next one”. A lof of people with panic attacks will begin to avoid places in fear of having one in front of other people. It is often hard to explain you are a sufferer because from the outside there seems to be nothing wrong with you at all.
Some of you might have been grabbing the bottle. But believe me, alcohol is never the solution. It will only get worse as soon as you sober up. Do not worry, do not think you are childish or that people think you are crazy. There are a lot of very good treatments that will help you reduce or even get rid of these attacks. You are not alone. Millions of people have panic attacks, but if you are reading this and your life is not what you would love it to be because of it make sure you bookmark this website because I will be giving you a lot of firsthand tips that helped me and others around me.