Panic Attack vs Anxiety Attack
When it comes to mental health issues, panic attack and anxiety attack are two of the most common diagnoses. Many people think they’re the same thing, but there are important distinctions between the two. Knowing the differences between the two can help you better understand and manage your own symptoms.
What is a Panic Attack?
A panic attack is a sudden, intense episode of fear or apprehension. It usually comes on suddenly and without warning. It’s often accompanied by physical symptoms such as heart palpitations, chest pain, difficulty breathing, and nausea. The fear and discomfort associated with a panic attack can be so intense that it can feel like a heart attack. A panic attack usually lasts for a few minutes, but the physical and emotional after-effects can linger for days.
What is an Anxiety Attack?
An anxiety attack is a more generalized feeling of fear or worry. It’s usually triggered by a specific event or situation, and it’s usually accompanied by physical symptoms such as sweating, trembling, and difficulty breathing. Unlike a panic attack, an anxiety attack usually doesn’t come on suddenly and without warning. It can last for minutes or hours, and the physical and emotional after-effects can linger for days.
Similarities and Differences Between Panic and Anxiety Attacks
Although panic attacks and anxiety attacks share many of the same physical and emotional symptoms, there are important differences between the two. Here are some of the key similarities and differences between panic and anxiety attacks:
- Similarities: Both panic and anxiety attacks can cause physical symptoms such as sweating, trembling, and difficulty breathing. They can also cause emotional symptoms such as fear, worry, and a sense of impending doom.
- Differences: Panic attacks come on suddenly and without warning, while anxiety attacks are usually triggered by a specific event or situation. Panic attacks usually last for a few minutes, while anxiety attacks can last for minutes or hours.
Tips for Managing Panic and Anxiety Attacks
If you experience panic or anxiety attacks, there are several things you can do to manage your symptoms:
Practice Relaxation Techniques
Relaxation techniques such as deep breathing, progressive muscle relaxation, and mindfulness can help you manage your physical and emotional symptoms. Practicing these techniques on a regular basis can help you better manage your symptoms when you’re feeling anxious or panicky.
Seek Professional Help
If your symptoms are severe or persistent, it’s important to seek professional help. A mental health professional can help you identify the underlying causes of your anxiety or panic and develop a treatment plan to help you manage your symptoms.
Regular exercise can help reduce stress and improve your overall mental health. Exercise can also help reduce the physical symptoms of panic and anxiety attacks.
Talk to Someone
Talking to someone about your feelings can help you feel less alone and more in control. It can also help you identify and manage the underlying causes of your anxiety or panic.
Panic and anxiety attacks can be frightening and overwhelming, but there are things you can do to manage your symptoms. Knowing the differences between the two can help you better understand and manage your own symptoms. If your symptoms are severe or persistent, it’s important to seek professional help.