We all have experienced fear whether it’s from public speaking or taking on something new and unfamiliar. I never experienced a panic attack so I will base this post on my clinical perspective. About a third of people have one panic attack in their lifetime, they happen in 1 out 0f 10 adults in the U.S. A Panic attack happens at random, with extreme intensity and lasts about 5 to 10 minutes WebMD states you will have four or more physical symptoms:
· pounding or fast heartbeat
· trembling or Shaking
· Shortness of Breath
· a choke feeling
· chest pains
· Stomach Pains
· feeling Dizzy
· chills or hot flashes
· numbness of the body
· feeling unreal or detached
· fear of losing control
· a fear of dying
Risk factors to increase the likelihood of panic attacks include
· major changes in your life,
· Smoking or excessive caffeine intake
· history of child physical or sexual abuse
Doctors cannot determine the factors related to these attacks, research has suggested that it can be environmental or genetic. Turning to drugs and/or alcohol can cause your symptoms to worsen. If these attacks are persistent, you may have a panic disorder and if left untreated, it can lower your quality of life because it can lead to issues at work, school, and everyday living.
Panic attacks are tricky because it is hard to identify the triggers leading up to the attacks, an appropriate therapeutic method includes stopping negative thoughts and replacing them with positive thoughts. Treatment for panic disorder can include medication or psychotherapy and on a case-by-case basis a combination of the two. Treatment by an experienced professional can reduce and prevent panic attacks.
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, please consult with your primary physician.