Understanding Panic Disorders

Don't let out-of-the-blue fear and anxiety overwhelm your life and negatively affect your health.

Panic attacks can be unpredictable, frightening, and cause us to fear another episode – but seeking treatment to manage their causes can help reduce their frequency. Learn more about understanding panic disorders:

What is a panic disorder?
A panic disorder is a type of anxiety disorder that can be characterized as reoccurring panic attacks, which can manifest in physical symptoms that resemble those of a heart attack. The condition affects about 6 million American adults and is twice as common in women as men.

What are the symptoms of a panic disorder?
Although they vary from person to person, signs and symptoms of panic disorder or repeated panic attacks can include:

  • Sudden, repeated attacks of fear
  • A feeling of being out of control 
  • Intense worry about when the next panic attack will happen
  • Pounding or racing heart
  • Sweating
  • Shortness of breath or trouble breathing
  • Weakness or dizziness
  • Hot or cold flashes
  • Tingly or numb hands
  • Chest pain, which can resemble symptoms of a heart attack
  • Stomach pain

To learn more about living with panic disorder, read Helen's story in our Health Library.

Are there treatments for panic disorders?
If you suffer from a panic disorder, know there there are treatments available. Successful lifestyle changes, including medication, relaxation techniques, and therapy, may be prescribed by your physician.

To manage panic attacks, try these suggestions:

  • Avoid excessive alcohol
  • Avoid excessive caffeine
  • Avoid drug use
  • Remain well-rested
  • Schedule quiet time

Medical Center of McKinney is dedicated to understanding, diagnosing, and successfully treating panic attack and anxiety disorders. If you or a loved one could benefit from medical care, please visit our website to learn more about how we can help. To find a physician, call us 1-855-296-6265.

Related Posts:
What is the Difference Between Stress and Anxiety?
Do I Have "Hurried Woman Syndrome"?

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