Panic attacks can be frightening and debilitating. The attacks limit a person’s ability to enjoy or be successful in life for fear of suffering another unpredictable attack, which can prevent people from leaving the house, travelling, gaining or maintain relationships, shopping, going out for a walk etc. Despite substantial long-term disabling effects many people fail to seek treatment. It is important to know that panic attacks are treatable and there is no need to suffer any longer.
Symptoms of Panic Attacks:
Increased heart rate
Chills, hot flushes, or sweating
Numbness or tingling
Fears that suddenly become overwhelming
Trembling or shaking for no apparent reason
Shortness of breath or sensations of being smothered
Choking, nausea, dizzy or light headedness
A sense of being detached
Feeling a loss of control
An overwhelming sensation you might die from the symptoms
Panic attacks can feel like being in terrible danger and there is a powerful urge to escape even though nothing is immediately threatening. Each attack can be as short as 30 seconds or last up to 30 minutes and feels longer to the person who is experiencing it.
What Causes Panic Attacks?
The first panic attack can be triggered or by a stressful event (eg loss of a loved one, job or health; shocks such as accidents or attacks etc) during these times the body has a fight or flight response which floods the body with adrenalin to get the heart racing and raise the blood pressure in readiness to fight for survival or run away from danger. After the first event the brain monitors situations and stimuli; compares them with the original stressful event and overreacts (eg a slight increase in heart rate caused by caffeine can be misinterpreted as a warning sign and the body reacts, as if there is a real and present danger).
What Can I Do To Help Myself?
Learn and practice coping skills, breathing and relaxation techniques that will help to reduce your symptoms.
Exercise, healthy food and good quality sleep are all useful for alleviating the symptoms of anxiety and panic. You’ll be surprised at what happens when you look after yourself.
Listen to your inner chatter (does it support or punish you?) are your thoughts rational or exaggerated? Learn to recognise what’s real and true; and stick with that.
Is your life hectic and out of balance? Can you reduce how much you are undertaking, or use time management to make your life more organised?
Seeking Professional Help
Don’t allow your fear or need for secrecy to stop you from seeking treatment, you deserve to be happier, less stressed and free, you can access help by calling me, Dawn Haworth, on 07818 840 841 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to make an appointment.
What Sort of Issues have People Brought To Therapy?
Chest pain without a medical reason
Experiencing dizziness or fainting
Fear of dying
Feeling of choking
Life changing injury or illness
Low self esteem
Pressures from work
Separation or divorce
Speeding up of heart rate, shaking, nausea, sweating
Sudden high level of anxiety, with or without a known cause