Panic Disorder

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Panic disorder is something that develops for no apparent reason. It causes repeated and unexpected attacks of intense fear. It can last for a few minutes or even hours. The people that have this disorder usually live in fear of having another attack. They are afraid to be alone, or to be far from medical help. The feelings of intense fear can trigger severe physical reactions. This disorder is very real and treatable. While it is not known what actually causes the attacks there are things that may play a role in those causes that include the following. Certain changes in the way the parts of your brain function. The flight or fight response to danger may contribute to a panic attack; however, it is not known why a panic attack occurs when there is no presence of danger. Genetics can be a factor; it can run in families and be passed on by one or both parents, similar to the way eye color is passed. Drug and alcohol abuse can also contribute to panic disorder. Stress also can trigger panic attacks, such as the death of a family member, or even a major change in life. When operating as an overloaded or impaired system versus a balanced system each portion of the brain plays an important role in the panic response that eventually leads to dysregulation of neurotransmitters. The initial area of impact for anxiety signals is the basal ganglia, which is located under the cortex of the brain. Underneath the basal ganglia is the limbic system, which further comprises intricate processes also involved in the panic response. The prefrontal cortex is the portion of the brain responsible for analyzing information and making decisions toward response. When faced with a trigger stressor, this area of the brain has a quick process to engage ... ... middle of paper ... ...aring your feelings will help you be free of the feeling of always living in fear. Works Cited "Anxiety/Panic: Symptoms & Types." WebMD - Better Information. Better Health. Web. 10 June 2010. . "Areas Of The Brain Affected By Panic Disorder | LIVESTRONG.COM." LIVESTRONG.COM - Health, Fitness, Lifestyle | LIVESTRONG.COM. Web. 19 June 2010. . "Panic Disorder." Google Health. Web. 10 June 2010. . Staff, Mayo Clinic. "Panic Attacks and Panic Disorder: Causes - MayoClinic.com." Mayo Clinic Medical Information and Tools for Healthy Living - MayoClinic.com. 25 May 2010. Web. 10 June 2010. .

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