Anxiety and panic Attacks affect at least 1 in 10 of us at some point in our lives and can occur only once or reoccur for years. Although panic attacks can feel overwhelming and as though something worryingly bad is happening to us they are not dangerous and we do not need to go to hospital and usually pass within 5-20 minutes. They can be very frightening and can come upon us for no apparent reason and often with no obvious trigger and symptoms that people report include:
- Racing heart or irregular beating heart.
- Chest pains
- Sweating palms
- A sense of unreality
- Fast, short breathing. Unable to catch breath.
How can counselling help?
These sensations are the same as we experience in threatening situations and trigger our fight, flight or freeze mechanism as adrenalin is pumped through our body. The experience can feel very disjointed as there is often no apparent threat. People experience panic attacks in a huge number of environments, some of the more common include:
- Crowded places like pubs, lectures, shopping malls, trains
- Exams and presentations