There are several types of panic disorders, the most common being a panic attack. While panic attacks don’t usually last for more than ten minutes, to say they can become detrimental to your way of living and your daily activities is an understatement.
If you believe that you are having panic attacks, it is best to go and get help for the disorder. In order to know whether you are having an attack or not, you should first look for the symptoms. Here are ten warning signs of a panic attack.
1. Increased heart rate. Often times, when you begin to panic, your heart rate will begin speeding up rapidly. This will often feel like a pounding feeling that is happening from your heart. This is usually accompanied by a feeling of pain in the chest.
2. Difficulty breathing. This also can be a shortness of breath that begins to occur. This is usually as a result of the increased heart rate. Often times, when you are having a panic attack, you will feel like you have to gasp for air, instead of being able to breathe easily.
3. Nausea. This is often accompanied by a dizzy feeling as well as feeling sick to the stomach. Often times, nausea is also part of becoming light headed. Because of the quick shift in your way of thinking, nausea will react in your body, trying to balance out the physical reactions to the panic.
4. Coldness or numbness in the hands. Often times, sweaty palms, or numbness occur during a panic attack. While the hands will seem to have a more extreme shift in temperature than the rest of the body, this same coldness or numbness may also be present in other parts of your body.
5. Fear. This is one of the largest parts of a panic attack. There are several different types of fears that accompany panic attacks. One is the fear of dying. Another fear is that of losing control or going crazy. If you are in a certain area, then other types of fears may accompany this as well, depending on what triggers the panic attack.
6. Depersonalization. This is similar to what many refer to as an out of body experience. At the beginning of your panic attack, you may begin to feel as though you are not really you and that this situation is not who you are. This sense of depersonalization is a large part of panic attacks.
7. Cold or hot flashes. You may begin to get sweaty and begin to shake. At the other extreme, you will feel cold and hot at the same time.
8. No basis for the attack. Many describe panic attacks as having no basis behind them. They will be in a normal situation, doing the work or chores of the day when a panic attack occurs. The symptoms will begin to occur suddenly while doing the activities of the day.
9. Terror. Panic attacks are often accompanied by more than fear. Those that have panic attacks may also get an overwhelming feeling that something horrible is about to happen. They may not feel like they have control to prevent this event from happening, adding onto the terror.
10. Loss of control. Along with the physical symptoms and ideas that are in a panic attack is the idea that one is going to loose control. This is a result of the panic attack triggering. Because of the quick change in body functions as well as the ideas that follow, one will often feel like they are not able to control their body as well as what is about to happen.
Usually, those with panic attacks have four or more of the symptoms that are mentioned above. A panic attack will usually not last for more than ten minutes. However, the feelings of fear that accompany it can last up to an hour.
If the panic attacks become more frequent and extreme, it can also result in a panic disorder, causing for dysfunctions to occur in your everyday life. If you have these symptoms, or know someone who has panic attacks, it is best to look into the problem as soon as possible, so that the attacks don’t worsen.