Don’t panic on Panic Awareness Day

Have you ever had the feeling that you can’t breathe 크레용팝 빠빠빠 다운로드? Your heart is racing, you feel sweaty and the world seems to close in on you? You have an overwhelming urge to run, but where? And from what? This is classically how a panic attack feels! They come on suddenly and often without warning, triggered by a crowded place, an exam, a new job or an argument. If you ask someone who’s had a panic attack what it feels like, they’ll tell you: “It feels like I’m going to die.”

Inside your body, a panic attack happens when your sympathetic nervous system is activated, Driven by adrenaline, your body goes into “fight or flight” mode in response to a perceived danger. An increased heart rate, nausea, dizziness, tunnel vision, numbness in the limbs or face, a feeling of impending death, feeling “out of reality”, and shortness of breath are just some of the symptoms – which in turn can leave you feeling even more anxious. Panic attacks can last for as long as 30 minutes, sometimes longer, and often result in the person needing to get medical help.

But why do they happen?

Panic attacks are often associated with psychiatric issues such as anxiety disorders, OCD, PTSD or alcohol/drug use and addiction. They could also accompany medical diseases such as an over active thyroid, or be triggered by a phobia, caffeine, smoking, a stressful life event and certain medication. It’s also possible to bring on symptoms of panic by hyperventilating (rapid, shallow breathing).

There are a few important things to remember if you or someone you know ever has a panic attack:

  1. Although the symptoms might be scary, they’re not life-threatening.
  2. Take yourself away from the person or the situation, and go to a quiet place and breathe SLOWLY and DEEPLY until you start feeling better.
  3. If this is the first time you’ve had a panic attack, it’s important that you see a doctor so you can be assessed. This is because symptoms can be similar to other life-threatening conditions, such as a heart attack, which need to be ruled out.
Read  Do's and don'ts of depression support

Treatment for panic attacks depends on the underlying cause, and can be as simple as taking an occasional anti-anxiety tablet when needed, to long-term treatment options that include anti-depressants and psychotherapy.

Today being Panic Awareness Day in South Africa, take a moment to think about friends and loved ones who struggle with these debilitating, and frightening attacks. Offer your support and understanding!