Helping Panic Attacks

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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... ... middle of paper ... ...etrieved on November 22, 2013, from http://psychcentral.com/disorders/panic-disorder-symptoms/ Rogge, T., MD. (2013, February 26). Panic disorder: MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia. U.S National Library of Medicine. Retrieved from http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000924.htm Smith, M., M.A, Robinson, L., & Segal, J., Ph.D. (2013, November). Anxiety Attacks & Anxiety Disorders. : Signs, Symptoms, and Treatment. Retrieved from http://www.helpguide.org/mental/anxiety_types_symptoms_treatment.htm Stöppler, M. C., MD. (2013, September 10). Panic Attacks (Panic Disorder) Causes, Symptoms, Treatment, Signs, Medication, Types - MedicineNet. MedicineNet. Retrieved from http://www.medicinenet.com/panic_disorder/article.htm

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