reduces how many panic attacks you have and how often you have them. It lowers the anxiety you feel because of
the fear of future attacks. And it improves the quality of your life. Treatment may include:
Unfortunately, many people don't
seek treatment for anxiety disorders. You may not seek treatment because you
think the symptoms aren't bad enough. Or maybe you think that you can work things out on your
own. But getting treatment is important.
Normal life includes some anxiety and fear. In a stressful situation, your brain triggers a flood of chemicals into the bloodstream. Your heart beats faster; your breath becomes shallow and rapid; muscles tense; your mind goes on full alert. It's all part of the human's innate reaction to a threat: You're ready to flee or fight.
Sometimes anxiety and fear linger on and on. The feelings can be overwhelming. When they interfere with normal activities, there's a problem. Doctors call this kind of problem...
If you need help
deciding whether to see your doctor, see
some reasons why people don't get help and how to overcome them.
If your panic attacks were caused by a specific trigger, such as a
medicine reaction, you may not need treatment after the trigger has been
removed. In this case, that would mean stopping the medicine with the help of
But sometimes panic attacks caused by outside factors can continue
after the trigger has been removed. They may turn into panic disorder.
Panic attacks may also start suddenly without a known trigger.
Recurring panic attacks
You may have mild to severe panic attacks off and on for years, especially if you also
agoraphobia (avoiding places where you fear another
attack will occur).
Even after treatment is
stopped because the attacks appear to be under control, attacks can suddenly
return. Learn your early warning signs and triggers so you can seek
panic attacks get too severe or happen too often, you
may need to be hospitalized until they are under control. You also may need a
brief hospital stay if you have panic attacks along with another health
condition, such as
depression. Panic attacks combined with these conditions can be
harder to treat.
An important part of ongoing treatment is making sure
that you are taking your medicine as prescribed. Often people who feel better after
using medicine for a period of time may believe they are "cured" and no longer
need treatment. But when medicine is stopped, symptoms usually return. So it's
important to continue the treatment plan.
This information is produced and provided by the National
Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National
Institute via the Internet web site at http://
.gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER.
WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise
May 17, 2013
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor.
Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this