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Panic Attack - Can You Identify The Cause And Symptoms?

Aug 17, 2007
Panic attack...it can occur anytime. It's like being put inside a wash dryer. Your heart starts racing; you are short of breath and worst case scenario - you feel like you are about to die. If you have experienced it before then you'll recognise the symptoms about to be discussed in this article.

So what is the cause of panic attack? That's a question many have tried to answer in the past and many views have been put forward. Hereditary traits are a common denominator but not conclusive. Stress factors are considered contributory and biochemical elements likewise. But as far as nailing down a single, common cause, well, researchers are still working on that.

Did You Know?

There is a strong correlation between panic attack sufferers and other mental health conditions. For example, people who experience panic attack symptoms can also be affected by bouts of depression, agoraphobia,as well as social phobia.

The Symptoms

The scariest part of panic attack is it seems to strike with the precision of stealth. As a public broadcaster, I'm well aware of the pressures of broadcasting to a live audience. It has affected me twice during my life so in relative terms I can count myself a little fortunate. The scariest moment of my life came midway during the broadcast of a live sports event in the mid 1990's and what happened at the time is a little difficult to describe in words. Let's just say I coped as best I could but if you could imagine standing in front of a live audience and "sailing" through a presentation with great ease one minute, then within 60 seconds feeling like someone has cut off your oxygen supply. Twelve years later, I'm happy to say it's never happened again but I pose the question why; and what's up with that?

If you experience symptoms such as rapid heart rate, sweats, hyperventilation, chills, hot flashes and chest pain then the chances are pretty good you are experiencing an attack. Not to mention dizziness, trembling, tightness in the throat area and a real sense that you are going to die. In the US alone, the number of emergency patients who check in convinced they are having a heart attack and upon diagnosis are told everything is okay is staggering.

Cause Of Panic Attack

Again, the question has to be asked... what is the cause? Apart from some possible reasons mentioned earlier, it's still a baffling mystery for researchers. There isn't a magic pill prescribed that will prevent it from happening again.

The human body is an amazing piece of machinery. It's ability to sense danger or dangerous situations is fascinating. Many researchers believe that this instinct; the body's natural fight and reactionary response to danger can give us some of the clues in why panic attack occurs. It's something akin to being 50 yards from shore at your favorite beach with not another soul around. Suddenly your thought process turns to the possibility of sharks. Within seconds, an intense fear begins to grip you and you head for shore. There may not have been any sharks in the area but the fear was real.

Is There Treatment Available?

While there is no treatment that will cure panic attack for extreme sufferers, there are some effective medication treatments available. Antidepressant medications are extremely effective in most cases and should be discussed with your physician.

Therapy sessions with either a psychiatrist or psychologist are also recommended, particularly for chronic sufferers and at worst, will help you understand your condition which in the end, can only help you cope with it better in the future. However it affects you in your life, don't do nothing, which sadly, is what the majority will do.
About the Author
Dean Caporella is a professional broadcaster. Panic attack can strike like stealth. Can you recognize panic attack symptom? Read the latest reviews at: http://www.panicattacksite.com
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