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Panic Disorder

Panic disorder is a form of anxiety or mental disorder where you often have sudden panic fears. It’s common to experience the feeling of panic or anxiety at certain times, and it’s a natural response with it in dangerous, stressful, or traumatic situations. But people with panic disorder face regular panic attacks anytime, without any particular reason.

Panic disorder symptoms

Anxiety

Anxiety is when you feel unease, ranging from mild to severe, or any feeling of fear and worry. Anxiety creates a cycle of “in fear of fear.” Avoiding the circumstances that trigger your anxiety will be the first step.

Panic attacks

A panic attack is when you have an intense rush of mental and physical symptoms, which can be severely frightening and distressing. Panic attacks symptoms include:

  • Heartbeat rising
  • Sweating
  • Fainting
  • Chest pain
  • Shortness of breath
  • Hot flushes
  • Chills
  • Dizziness
  • Dry mouth
  • Choking sensations
  • Shaky limbs
  • Ringing ears
  • Feeling dread or fear of dying
  • Grumbling stomach
  • Tingling fingers
Panic disorder - Overview, Signs, Treatments Optimists Healthcare A-Z
Typically, panic attacks last 5–20 minutes, and the number of attacks depends on your condition’s seriousness. Panic attacks can be frightening but not dangerous, and there will be no physical harm. Most symptoms signify other problems; the racing heartbeat can be because of low blood pressure.

 

Panic disorder treatments

Panic disorder treatments aim to reduce and ease the symptoms. The primary treatment will be medicines and talking to a therapist; it might differ according to the signs.

 

Psychological therapies

One can refer directly to psychological therapies for treatment based on cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT). A regular doctor can also refer you a psychological treatment. The therapist may discuss and analyze how you react to a panic attack and what you think during the episodes. They can trach ways of changing behaviors to help you during a panic attack.

Reviewed by – Dr. Priyanka, MBBS MD Microbiology
Page last reviewed: 23 JUNE 2022