A panic attack may occur when a person is extremely anxious, and it is something that can happen to anyone. These attacks might occasionally be a sign of panic disorder. A person may feel overpowering feelings, such as helplessness and terror, during a panic attack. Rapid breathing, shivering, sweating, and a quick heartbeat are examples of physical symptoms. Specific conditions that cause increased stress are common triggers of panic attacks. However, for other people, they occur repeatedly with no apparent cause. The individual in this situation may have a panic disorder.
A panic attack can be terrifying for the person experiencing it as well as for those who witness it in a loved one. A panic attack is characterized by a rapid, intense spike in dread or anxiety along with physical symptoms such as a faster heartbeat and shortness of breath. It could be challenging to offer assistance or even feel compassion for a fearful family member who is going through a panic attack if you don't know what it's like to go through one.
The severe physical symptoms of a panic attack are caused by the body's fight-or-flight reaction. Even when there is no immediate danger, the body goes on high alert as a result of the release of adrenaline into the bloodstream in response to a perceived threat. The heartbeat quickens, the breathing becomes shallow and rapid, and the sensations become more acute. Instantaneous adjustments in each of these factors provide the body with the strength it needs to fight the danger or flee it.
Although the exact etiology of panic attacks is unknown, they may manifest in response to significant life changes, traumatic experiences, or stressors in one's life. They can happen at any time, whether it's on an aircraft, at a business meeting, or at a party. A panic attack can be a terrifying experience as people who experience these attacks frequently believe they are losing control, experiencing a heart attack, or perhaps about to pass away.
These terrifying bouts can linger for 20 to 30 minutes, but they frequently come on suddenly. Understanding the physical indications of a panic attack, such as nausea, cramps, chest pain, upset stomach, excessive sweating, muscle aches, dizziness, loss of appetite, blurred vision, trembling or shaking, rapid heart rate, hyperventilation, shortness of breath, and numbness in the extremities, is the first step in helping a loved one.
The effects of panic attacks on a person's life might become more and more disruptive. These may consist of decreased quality of interpersonal relationships, poor work performance, increased risk of suicidal tendencies, and social withdrawal.
It's typical to feel exhausted or shaken for minutes or hours after a panic attack. Some people might only experience one panic episode in their entire lives. Others experience repeated attacks and always worry about having more. Panic disorder is the name given to this condition. People may alter their behavior or way of life in an effort to stay away from circumstances or places that make them anxious in an effort to ease and lessen the symptoms of the disease.