The Truth About Panic Attacks

Anxiety attacks, also known as panic attacks, are intense feelings of fear or stress that appear for no apparent reason and often begin without warning. Classified as a panic disorder by The National Institute of Mental Health, anxiety attacks are a disorder in themselves.

Who is Affected?

While 6 million adults in the U.S. experience a panic disorder every year, 40 million experience some type of anxiety disorder, which may or may not include panic attacks. The most common age group affected by anxiety attack disorder is the 17-25 set, and it is more likely to occur in women than men.

What Does an Anxiety Attack Feel Like?

In addition to feeling intense fear brought on suddenly, panic attacks can cause shortness of breath, rapid heartbeat, nausea, and other uncomfortable symptoms. An anxiety attack can last anywhere from a few seconds to an hour, or it may feature several small attacks one after another. Many confuse panic attack symptoms with those of a heart attack, but usually, an anxiety attack does not require a hospital visit.

What Can You Do?

So far, studies have not conclusively reported whether anxiety attacks are biological or genetic. Panic attacks occur because of our behaviors and environmental factors, not necessarily our genes. This is good news for those suffering; anxiety attack disorder can be cured. Recognize variables in your life that could be causing you stress, and try to eliminate them. There are many different ways and techniques to reduce your anxiety.

Source: National Institute of Mental Health
Photo: Max Pixel

Anxiety Support Groups

More Articles

Inderal, known generically as propranolol, is a beta blocker that has been in use since the 1960s. Like other beta blockers, it was developed to...

The precise causes of hoarding are unknown, but it appears that both genetics and environmental factors play a role. Because hoarding behaviors...

When we give to others, more so than receive, we are happier and more fulfilled, which can help treat anxiety and depression. A recent study,...

Risperidone, an atypical antipsychotic sold under the brand name Risperdal, is a medication typically used to treat schizophrenia, manic...

Just because a thought visits your mind does not mean it is true. Negative thoughts about yourself and speculation about what’s going to happen...

More Articles

One of the most commonly used and most effective treatments for mental health issues, particularly anxiety disorders and depression, is cognitive...

How should this medicine be used?

Zoloft or Sertraline comes as a tablet and concentrates to take by mouth. It is usually taken once...

Medications are an important tool for people dealing with anxiety, but most experts agree that they are best used as a short-term solution for...

Around 40 million American adults suffer from some kind of anxiety disorder. While there are effective therapies and medications that make it...

A new study has successfully demonstrated the effectiveness of a novel treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Using drugs that don't...

Neurontin, generically known as gabapentin, is an anticonvulsant drug approved by the FDA to treat certain types of seizures in epileptics...

Many people with anxiety or depression are interested in finding a "natural" treatment method that can help ease their symptoms. For some people,...

One thing to remember before a first date is that the overall quality of your life does not hinge on its success. If the date goes belly-up, you...

Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) is a mix of mindfulness meditation and simple yoga poses. It has been proven to help people reduce...

Living with anxiety is no easy task; being able to reduce and control your anxiety makes handling the disorder easier. Whether or not the...

Some people with panic disorder have a pretty good idea about when a panic attack is likely--they know to expect one as the result of a certain...

If children perceive that their parents don't show them love, are they at risk for experiencing anxiety later in life? That's what the Surrey...

Specific phobias are the most common type of anxiety disorder that is defined as an irrational fear of or aversion to a situation or specific...

For sufferers of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), prolonged exposure (PE) therapy is a proven, effective treatment. Sometimes referred to as...

Omega-3 fatty acids are thought to have a number of potential health benefits, from possible anti-cancer effects to improved cardiovascular health...