A panic attack is a sudden surge of overwhelming anxiety and fear. Your heart pounds and you can’t breathe. You may even feel like you’re dying or going crazy.
Left untreated, panic attacks can lead to panic disorder and other problems and may even cause you to withdraw from normal activities. With therapy treatment, you can reduce or eliminate the symptoms of panic and regain control of your life.
Why do people get panic attacks?
Some people are prone to panic attacks because of a traumatic experience in their past, while others suffer panic attacks alongside another underlying condition, such as agoraphobia, post-traumatic stress, or OCD. Some people get panic attacks in the wake of suffering a recent setback or problem, such as bereavement or the loss of a job. However, we don’t always know what the cause is.
Can Psychotherapy help?
In the short-term medication can provide some symptomatic relief. Psychotherapy over time can lead to lasting change for panic sufferers. Research suggests that fears of separation and anger can be central to panic onset and it’s maintenance, and that panic can be prevalent from early on in life for people who struggle with feelings of inadequacy and a sense of being dependent on caretakers to provide safety. Traumatic early life experiences such as loss of a parent/sibling or abandonment threats can lead to a fearful dependency in adult life resulting in high anxiety and panic attacks.
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
Cognitive behavioural therapy is a form of treatment for panic attacks, panic disorder, and agoraphobia. Cognitive behavioural therapy focuses on the thinking patterns and behaviours that are sustaining or triggering the panic attacks. It helps you look at your fears in a more realistic light.
Therapy can help you tackle the panic you experience so you can enjoy life more fully.