Anxiety Disorder

What is an anxiety disorder?

Experiencing occasional anxiety is a normal part of life. However, people with anxiety disorders frequently have intense, excessive and persistent worry and fear about everyday situations. Often, anxiety disorders involve repeated episodes of sudden feelings of intense anxiety and fear or terror that reach a peak within minutes (panic attacks).

What are the symptoms of anxiety disorder?

Common anxiety signs and symptoms include:

  • Feeling nervous, restless or tense

  • Having a sense of impending danger, panic or doom

  • Having an increased heart rate

  • Breathing rapidly (hyperventilation)

  • Sweating

  • Trembling

  • Feeling weak or tired

  • Trouble concentrating or thinking about anything other than the present worry

  • Having trouble sleeping

  • Experiencing gastrointestinal (GI) problems

  • Having difficulty controlling worry

  • Having the urge to avoid things that trigger anxiety

Panic Disorder

What is a panic disorder?

A panic attack is a sudden episode of intense fear that triggers severe physical reactions when there is no real danger or apparent cause. Panic attacks can be very frightening. When panic attacks occur, you might think you're losing control, having a heart attack or even dying.

Many people have just one or two panic attacks in their lifetimes, and the problem goes away, perhaps when a stressful situation ends. But if you've had recurrent, unexpected panic attacks and spent long periods in constant fear of another attack, you may have a condition called panic disorder.

Although panic attacks themselves aren't life-threatening, they can be frightening and significantly affect your quality of life. But treatment can be very effective.

What are the symptoms of a panic disorder?

Panic attacks are surprisingly common. Up to 40 per cent of the population will experience a panic attack at some time in their life.1 Some of the common signs and symptoms of a panic attack include:

  • a sense of overwhelming panic or fear

  • the thought that you are dying, choking, ‘losing control’ or ‘going mad’

  • increased heart rate

  • difficulty breathing (feeling that there is not enough air)

  • feeling choked

  • excessive perspiration

  • dizziness, light-headedness or feeling faint.

People experiencing a panic attack may also experience ‘derealisation’; a sense that you or the world around you is not real. This symptom is thought to be associated with the physiological changes that occur in the body during the anxiety response.

Source:https://www.beyondblue.org.au/the-facts/anxiety/types-of-anxiety/panic-disorder

Source: https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/conditions-and-diseases/anxiety-disorders

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