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Individuals who suffer from panic disorder know that these attacks attacks do not just cause momentary distress, but can ruin every moment of waking life by causing worry and triggering depression. An anxiety attack, according to the Mayo Clinic is "a sudden episode of intense fear that develops for no apparent reason and that triggers severe physical reactions."
Symptoms of a panic attack can include sweating, difficulty breathing, palpitations and dizziness. Those inexperienced with panic attacks might think that they are having a heart attack. Most individuals only have a panic attack once or twice during their lifetime. Others find themselves tormented by frequent and random panic attacks. Because they do not know when the next attack will occur, they find themselves constantly worrying and dreading the next panic attack. This constant worry can be psychologically devastating.A new study conducted by Penn State's medical school and funded by a Pennsylvania Psychological Foundation Education Award has concluded that those who suffer from panic attacks are more likely to suffer from long term depression. The study consisted of 94 participants, with 22 men and 74 women. Participants in the study were given two questionnaires, one to measure the patient's worry and the other requested that patients reveal their past experiences with anxiety attacks.
The surveys found that because of the unpredictable nature of panic attacks, suffers never know when the next attack will occur. They often live in constant fear of their next anxiety attack and may experience long term depression. They might also dread participating in normal activities because they might experience an anxiety episode.
One question revealed that many anxiety attack sufferers worried that their constant preoccupation with the possibility of another attack means that they are going crazy. This fear of insanity was one of the contributing factors of their depression. Panic attack suffers should keep in mind that their problem is a recognized medical condition, and that dreading a panic attack is understandable. Fortunately, anxiety attack suffers can reduce their risk of depression by seeking treatment for their underlying anxiety issues. Sufferers can learn how to recognize and manage their panic attack symptoms. Understanding what triggers panic attacks can give an individual a sense of control. Therapy can help individuals gain understanding of the underlying issues that prompt panic attacks. Panic attacks can be caused by an undiagnosed and untreated phobia or other physiological issue. Pharmaceutical treatments for panic attacks are available if other therapeutic treatments fail to have the desired effect. Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, or SSRIs are usually the first medication prescribed. If SSRIs fail to manage a patient's symptoms, other medications such as serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors or monoamine oxidase inhibitors are often successful. Individuals considering pharmaceutical treatments should discuss any other medications that they are taking with their primary care physician to avoid any dangerous drug interactions.Individuals who suffer from anxiety and panic attacks should carefully monitor themselves for any sign of depression. If they experience suicidal thoughts, they should seek professional help immediately.
Drawing upon our more than 30-year history of granting degrees in professional psychology, Argosy University has developed a curriculum that focuses on interpersonal skills and practical experience alongside academic learning. Because getting a degree is one thing. Succeeding, quite another.
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