Helping Panic Attacks Essay

1407 words - 6 pages

Have you ever had a friend who suffers from a panic attack? A panic attack or anxiety is a feeling of terror that strike suddenly and repeatedly with no warning (Psych Central, 2013). Anxiety is the body’s natural response to danger, an automatic alarm that goes off when you feel threatened, under pressure, or are facing a stressful situation (Smith, Robinson, & Segal, 2013). Having concern is not always a bad thing because it helps you stay aware and focused. But when anxiety is constant or overwhelming, when it interferes with your relationship and activities, it stops being functional, that’s when you crossed the line from normal, productive anxiety into the territory of anxiety disorders (Smith et al., 2013).

Panic disorder affect about 2.4 million adult Americans, most often begins during late adolescence and early adult adulthood (Katz, 2012). Studies have shown that biological and environmental play a factor in a panic attacks. Some factors are family history, abnormalities in the brain, substance abuse and major life stress (Katz, 2012). It is most common in men than women. According to one theory of panic disorder, the body’s normal “alarm system,” the set of mental and physical mechanisms that allows a person to respond to a threat, tends to be triggered unnecessarily when there is no danger (Stöppler, 2013).

There are no signs of panic attacks because they sneak up on you; you never know when they are going to come. Anything can trigger an attack like giving an important presentation in front of the class or losing your child at the mall. Some people even stop doing their daily activities because it gives them anxiety, or always having that feeling of something awful is going to happen. Panic attacks usually last for about ten minutes, but sometime they can last for hours. Once people have their first attack, they are afraid of having another one. Many people mistake it for a heart attack, and go to the hospital, but the doctor cannot find anything wrong.

There are many symptoms for a panic attack. Some of the emotional symptoms are: not being able to concentrate, feeling tense, restlessness, and irritability; they feel like this because it is excessive fear and worry. As a product of the body’s fight-or-flight response, anxiety involves a wide range of physical symptoms such as headaches, fatigue, sweating, and stomach upsets (Smith et al, 2013). Sometime it can affect with work, school or even your family household duties, when this start to happen you need to seek treatment.

There are many treatments out here for panic attacks. If you go to the doctor and they see sign and symptoms of attacks, they will start a medical history and physical exam. It is not possible to use lab test to diagnose panic attacks; but they use several physical disease tests as the cause of indicator. If they cannot find the problem then they will refer you to a psychiatrist or psychologist so they can detect and treat the panic disorder. They will...

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