The average person will experience at least one panic attack sometime during their lifetime.
Generally speaking panic attacks are described as the body’s reaction to a stressful situation, or the triggering of the “fight or flight” mechanism. In most people this reaction triggers at the appropriate moments, during times of high stress; for a small number of people this reaction will trigger at random, inappropriate moments; this is known as panic disorder.
If you have ever experienced being uncomfortable and feeling that something just isn’t right when it comes to your breathing or the way your body seems to be failing you, it is entirely possible you could have been experiencing an anxiety attack symptom.
Let’s take a look at some of the symptoms that usually come with anxiety attacks.
How to recognize an anxiety attack symptom.
Panic attacks are noted for appearing surprisingly similar to a heart attack. While panic attack symptoms are very similar to those of a heart attack; doctors will tell you that the two can be distinguished. Most panic attacks are marked with a few common qualities.
- A Pounding Heart
One of the more common of an anxiety attack symptom is a pounding heart. This symptom can be caused by a number of different anxiety attacks, from mild to severe. Most panic sufferers also experience tightness in their chest, which usually leads them to believe they are having a heart attack, when in reality they are experiencing anxiety.
- Shortness of Breath
Shortness of breath is another anxiety attack symptom that is seen a lot because of someone feeling panicked due to other symptoms they are experiencing. The shortness of breath can seem like your world is caving in, but by being able to recognize the symptom as part of an anxiety attack, you can more easily control this.
- Lightheaded or Faint
Becoming lightheaded is another anxiety attack symptom that happens a lot in crowded areas. Many people have a phobia about being in crowds and becoming lightheaded or fainting is a common symptom that they experience. People will sometimes think they have a more serious issue, but it reality it’s only one of the symptoms that are associated with anxiety attacks.
- Fear of Losing Control
Another anxiety attack symptom that is almost always present in an attack is the fear of losing control. This fear comes from the seemingly uncontrollable symptoms that precede like becoming light headed with a racing heart, and shortness of breath. It is a natural feeling for us to feel as if we are losing control of our own bodies.
Other panic attack symptoms include the following:
tingling in one or both arms and/or the tips of the fingers, increased body temperature along with profuse sweating, minor delusions, nausia, and unfounded fear towards random objects or events. Anxiety attack symptoms vary and are not isolated to just one group of people. Everybody is different and may experience varying symptoms based on what their fears may be. Most chronic panic sufferers tend to have a unique set of symptoms that mark their panic attacks.
So how can you tell if you are having a panic attack? Well besides experiencing any combination of the symptoms listed above, there are a few more distinguishing factors behind panic attacks. Panic attacks are very limited in time. The body can only maintain this reaction for, at most, 15 minutes. A person who experiences any combination of the above listed panic attack symptoms would be wise to remember that the feelings will not last very long.
Another major factor of panic attacks is the feeling of anxiety that follows an attack. Most people who experience a panic attack tend to worry about attacks that will follow. This is a natural occurrence, and a good sign that all you experienced was a panic attack. This feeling usually lasts a few days to a week in most people.
However, if this anxiety of having a panic lasts over that time then it may be wise to see a doctor. Prolonged anxiety of panics, especially when more then one panic has occurred, is a sign of panic disorder. In which case the person should seek help from a medical physician, or psychiatric doctor in order to control their attacks.
Treating Anxiety Attacks
Anxiety is a treatable problem and many people live normal lives once they learn to control their attacks. In the end, by visiting a physician to talk about the anxiety attack symptoms that bother you, a plan can be put in place as to how you can effectively overcome the symptoms as they occur, making it possible to ensure you’re not overwhelmed by anxiety attacks.