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Panic disorder presents a significant mental health challenge, profoundly impacting a person's everyday life. It's defined by sudden, recurrent bouts of overwhelming fear, often coupled with physical manifestations. Gaining an understanding of this disorder, accurately diagnosing it, and managing it effectively are essential steps for those who experience it.

Panic Disorder at ​Reliant Family Psychiatry in Mansfield & Grand Prairie, TX.

​Panic Disorder at ​Reliant Family Psychiatry in Mansfield & Grand Prairie, TX.

Symptoms

Panic attacks have a way of sneaking up on you without any warning. They don't pick a time or place - you could be behind the wheel, browsing in a mall, fast asleep, or right in the middle of a work meeting.

 

How often they happen can differ widely you might get them just now and then, or they might be a more frequent unwelcome visitor in your life.

Panic attacks have many variations, but symptoms usually peak within minutes. You may feel fatigued and worn out after a panic attack subsides.

Panic attacks typically include some of these signs or symptoms:

  • Sense of impending doom or danger

  • Fear of loss of control or death

  • Rapid, pounding heart rate

  • Sweating

  • Trembling or shaking

  • Shortness of breath or tightness in your throat

  • Chills

  • Hot flashes

  • Nausea

  • Abdominal cramping

  • Chest pain

  • Headache

  • Dizziness, lightheadedness or faintness

  • Numbness or tingling sensation

  • Feeling of unreality or detachment

One of the worst things about panic attacks is the intense fear that you'll have another one. You may fear having panic attacks so much that you avoid certain situations where they may occur.

​Symptoms

Understanding the Root Causes of Panic Attacks and Panic Disorder

The exact origins of panic attacks and panic disorder are still a bit of a mystery, but certain elements are thought to play a key role:

  • Genetic Factors: There's a possibility that family history plays a role.

  • Intense Stress: High stress levels are often identified as a common trigger.

  • Personality Characteristics: Individuals who are naturally more stress-sensitive or prone to negative emotions may be at higher risk.

  • Changes in Brain Functions: Some evidence suggests that alterations in certain brain functions may be a contributing factor.

Initially, panic attacks may occur unexpectedly, but as time goes on, they frequently become associated with particular situations.

Risk factors

Symptoms of panic disorder typically emerge in late adolescence or early adult years, and this condition seems to affect women more often than men. Several factors can heighten the risk of experiencing panic attacks or developing panic disorder:

  • Family History: Having relatives who've had panic attacks or panic disorder.

  • Significant Life Stressors: Events like the passing or severe illness of someone close to you.

  • Traumatic Experiences: Incidents like a sexual assault or a major accident.

  • Major Life Changes: Experiences such as going through a divorce or welcoming a new baby.

  • Lifestyle Factors: Habits like smoking or consuming a lot of caffeine.

  • Childhood Trauma: A history of physical or sexual abuse during childhood.

​Risk factors

Prevention

There's no sure way to prevent panic attacks or panic disorder. However, these recommendations may help.

  • Get treatment for panic attacks as soon as possible to help stop them from getting worse or becoming more frequent.

  • Stick with your treatment plan to help prevent relapses or worsening of panic attack symptoms.

  • Get regular physical activity, which may play a role in protecting against anxiety.

​Prevention
​Discover a brighter mental well-being journey at Reliant Family Psychiatry in Texas!

We're here to guide you every step of the way. Choose Reliant Family Psychiatry today

Discover a brighter mental well-being journey at Reliant Family Psychiatry in Texas!

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