Anxiety and Panic Attacks
Anxiety disorder is a far more common problem than was once thought. In can affect people in their teen age years through middle age and later. Anxiety disorder appears to affect twice as many women as men, though there may not actually be that wide a disparity between the sexes. . .
Anxiety disorder can be either acute or chronic.
1. Acute Anxiety Disorder
Acute anxiety disorder manifests itself in episodes commonly known as panic attacks. A panic attack is an instance in which the body’s natural “fight or flight” reaction occurs at the wrong time. This is a complex, involuntary physiological response in which the body prepares itself to deal with an emergency situation. . .
A person having a panic attack often is overwhelmed by a sense of impending disaster or death, which makes it impossible to think clearly. Other feelings that can accompany a panic attack include:
- shortness of breath;
- a smothering claustrophobic sensation;
- heart palpitations;
- chest pain;
- hot flashes and/or chills;
- numbness of tingling sensations in the extremeties;
- a feeling of unreality;
- and a distorted perception of the passage of time.
Panic Attacks Duration
Panic attacks are usually abrupt and intense. They can occur at any time of the day or night, lasting from several seconds up to half an hour. To the panic sufferer, it often feels as though they are much longer.
Panic Attacks Triggers
A person having a panic attack often believes that he or she is experiencing a heart attack or a stroke. The attacks themselves are very unpredictable; some people experience once every few weeks, while others may have several a day. They are often triggered by stress (conscious or unconscious) or certain emotions, but may also occur in response to certain foods, drugs, or illness.
Food allergies and hypoglycemia are both common among people with this disorder, and can promote panic attacks. An attack may follow ingestion or overindulgence in caffeine-based stimulants such as tea, or coffee. Some attacks occur with no apparent cause. The unpredictability of the attacks makes them even more distressing.
Self-induced Panic Attacks
Many people with acute anxiety disorder become fearful of being alone and of visiting public places because they fear having a panic attack. Of course this only adds to the level of anxiety and leads to their lives being abnormally restricted. Many psychologists believe that at least in some cases, panic attacks are self-induced; that is, the fear of a panic attack is the very thing that brings one about.
For years, panic attacks were dismissed as a psychosomatic phenomenon. However, repeated studies have shown that this disorder has a real, physical basis. Experts believe that panic attacks are caused principally by a malfunction in brain chemistry, wherein the brain sends and receives false “emergency signals.”
According to Mayo Clinic researchers, betwen 10 and 20% of Americans will have a panic attack at some time in their lives. Panic attacks are now recognized as a potentially disabling but treatable condition.
2. Chronic Anxiety Disorder
Chronic anxiety disorder is a mildier, more generalized form of this disorder. Many sufferes feel a vague sense of anxiety much of the time, but the intensity of the feeling does not reach the levels of those in an actual panic attack. They may feel chronically uneasy, especially in the presence of other people, and tend to startle easily. Headaches and chronic fatigue are common among people with this form of the disorder.
Generalized anxiety disorder can begin at any age, but the onset typically occurs in one’s twenties or thirties. Some people with chronic anxiety disorder also suffer from occasional panic attacks.
Anxiety disorder may be hereditary to some extent, as it seems to run in families.
A Word of Encouragement: “Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you.” 1 Peter 5:7
Source: Phyllis A. Balch, CNC, Prescription for Nutritional Healing, pp. 205, 206
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More Online Information: Anxiety and Panic Attacks
- Anxiety Panic Attacks Resource Site – panic attack and anxiety awareness
Anxiety attacks and panic attacks are the most common emotional disorders and are more common than bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, alcohol abuse or depression. People with Anxiety and panic attacks seek relief for symptoms that mimic physical illnesses which total more than $22.84 billion and are associated with repeated use of health care services.
- Anxiety and Panic Disorders Center: Panic Attacks, Phobias, and Treatments for Anxiety Disorders
Anxiety is a normal human emotion that we all experience. But when panic and anxiety symptoms escalate into anxiety attacks and panic attacks, it may be an anxiety disorder. Anxiety disorders include generalized anxiety disorder, social anxiety, and panic disorder. There is excellent treatment for anxiety attacks, as well as panic attack symptoms, including medication and psychotherapy.
- Anxiety Attacks
Anxiety attacks (including panic attacks and anxiety disorder) can be awful, frightening, and frustrating. Those who experience them know how difficult they can be. But you can eliminate them, and for good!
Too many people suffer needlessly.
Anxiety is NOT a disease, illness, or biological condition you inherit or contract. It’s also not a result of a chemical imbalance or biological problem in the brain.
Anxiety (including anxiety attacks, panic attacks, and the anxiety symptoms they produce) is a condition we cause. Anxiety only lingers when we don’t understand it or know how to reverse it.
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