Panic Disorder Part II

Fri, Jun 12, 2009

Panic Part II

Panic disorder is an anxiety disorder . Physical symptoms associated with panic disorder usually include the following:

Fast heartbeat

Feeling shaky

Difficulty breathing

Tingling or Numbness



Shortness of breath

Chest pain

Rapid or pounding heart beat

Hot or chill flashes

Fear of losing control, “going nuts,” or dying

Trembling or wobbly

Sensations of choking

Abdominal pains


Feeling unreal or disangaged




A recent study shows that people who diagnosed with panic disorder:

are more inclined to alcohol and other drugs

have higher risk of committing suicide

spend significant  time in emergency rooms of hospital

spend limited time on sports, hobbies and other useful activities

demonstrate tendency to be financially dependent on others family members

are afraid of driving more than a few miles away from home, on highways, or in airplanes

Do we treat panic disorder?

It has been recognized by medical professionals that a combination of cognitive and behavioral therapies are the best treatment for panic disorder. Treating panic disorder with medication might also be considered in some cases. The actual process of panic disorder treatment could be described as follows:

The first part of therapy is largely informational

Many people have been helped by simply understanding what panic disorder is, and how many people are suffering from it.

Some people worry that their panic attacks leads to their ‘going nuts’ feeling.

Others might think that the panic might induce a heart attack.

Cognitive restructuring (changing one’s way of thinking) replaces those thoughts with other, more realistic and highly positive ways of viewing the attacks and their possible origin.

In general, cognitive therapy helps the panic disorder patient identify possible triggers for the panic attacks. The trigger of panic attacks depends on each individual and could be just, a situation, a thought, or something as delicate as a slight change in heartbeat. As soon as the patient realizes what the panic attack is, separate its symptoms and understands how they are triggered, he or she begins to lose some of its power inducing an attack.

Interoceptive exposure, as a group of physician has identified, is the behavioral components of the cognitive therapy. This is similar to the systematic desensitization, which makes somebody less responsive to an overwhelming fear by repeated exposure to that feared situation. In real or superficial circumstances desensitization used to cure phobias, by focusing on a specific exposure of physical sensations during a panic attack.

Panic attacks can strike anytime, anywhere, and without warning. People may live in fear of another panic attack and may avoid those places where they happen to experience an attack. When fear takes over, they cannot leave their homes.

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