Panic attacks are brief episodes of extreme fear. They may be mistaken for heart attacks or strokes, but are actually psychological rather than physical. Panic attacks can occur suddenly and usually peak within ten minutes. Most panic attacks end within 20 to 30 minutes.
Some symptoms include:
- Chest pain
- Feelings of suffocation
Sometimes panic attacks are isolated incidents, but if a person has had at least two panic attacks and lives in fear of having another, they may have panic disorder. A panic attack can happen without an obvious cause, but people with panic disorder may develop phobias related to something they associate with panic attacks, including open spaces, and large crowds.
Panic disorder is classified as an anxiety disorder, and like other forms of anxiety, it is commonly treated with a combination of therapy, medications, and healthy lifestyle changes. Anxiety patients are also encouraged to do breathing exercises, get regular exercise, and to avoid stimulants.
While in therapy with Turning Point, you will learn when anxiety can be useful, and when it has become detrimental. While EMDR may not be the cure for every anxiety disorder and coordination may be needed with other healthcare providers, it can help clear up any traumas that have caused or worsened anxiety disorders. For panic disorders, typically treatment will consist of reprocessing the first, worst, and most recent panic attacks followed by triggering thoughts and environmental stimuli.