The Myths of Panic Attacks Busted
Myths of panic attacks
Misinformation does not only create vague pictures of a condition but will also likely cause people to believe things that do not actually exist. Among those conditions that typically receive serious amounts of myths are psychological and behavioural disorders. Partly because psychological conditions are often hard to understand and seem mysterious. In this article, we would try to debug the myths of one of the more common behavioural conditions… Panic Attacks
People with panic attacks are crazy!!
Crazy is never a good term for people with psychological conditions and people with panic attacks are hardly crazy. They may seem deranged and a bit psychotic for some people when they experience attacks of panic and terror, but this does not suggest that they are.
As if to add insult, people with panic attacks are sometimes perceived to have schizophrenia, the most advanced form of psychosis which is marked by sever auditory and visual hallucination as well as aggravated delusions and dysfunctional thoughts. Clearly, there is no relationship between people who feel like they are "going crazy" when undergoing attacks and people who have advanced (and even minor) psychological conditions.
People with panic attack attacks lose control!!
This is just downright wrong. Panic attacks do not rob a person his/her sense of control. While a person's thoughts may seem distorted for a while during attacks due to physical symptoms that lend themselves towards this possibility, such as shortness of breath and heart attack-like symptoms, this does not mean that the person is losing grip of reality. Anxiety which normally accompanies panic attacks is a body's way to tell you something is going wrong. Since this is a defence mechanism, it is not dangerous to anyone, not even the person undergoing the panic attack. This isn't to say the person experiencing the panic attack doesn't feel like there nothing going on because clearly, they do.
Having experienced a panic attack first-hand, I can tell you now that the range of emotions and thoughts that are processed during the process of a panicked state, these can make you feel like you are going to die, this thought is very real and very present for anyone who experiences an attack.
It is good to remember that panic attacks happen only in the mind, it may, be unnoticeable for people surrounding the person during the attack. What exacerbates the attack is the person's conscious thought that it could cause embarrassment or harm to other people. It is the sense of losing control of oneself that makes the condition worse, a thought that is manufactured in the brain, never the total lack of sense of control.
For me, when I experienced my first panic attack, I was driving, I felt like crap and had so much stress in my life at that point. I was unable to focus on a single thought process. So many feelings and emotions came flooding through, all at once, without any ability to control them. This started a physiological process which caused heart attack type symptoms which led to a moment of complete detachment from reality, luckily, I had pulled the car over however nonetheless, the feeling at the time was very real.
People with Panic Attacks have chronic heart disorders!!!
Whilst this may be partly true due to the link between mitral valve prolapse and panic attacks, this does not make the assertation entirely valid. People have good reason to believe that they are having heart attacks or heart failures when they experience episodes of panic attacks since some of the symptoms of both conditions are similar. But such symptoms are perfectly rational when seen from the viewpoint of elevated fear.
For example, in my case, I started to have memories come back from some early childhood trauma which I had experienced, literally just a thought which I had randomly, this triggered some of the feelings which were associated with those memories. This elevated my heart rate due to the release of adrenaline. I went into fight, flight or freeze mode. I was unable to catch my thoughts and soon spiralled into a complete and utter mess. I then experienced a full-blown panic attack which as I had not experienced this before made me to think that I was heading for a heart attack.
People who are subjected under conditions that stimulate fear experience tightening of the chest, fast heartbeat, profuse sweating, shortness of breath and increased respiration response. All these signs are also symptoms of heart attacks which make it easy for most people to believe that instead of having a disorder of the mind, they are having dysfunctional hearts, but then again similarity in symptoms does not make two completely different conditions alike.
Myths often offer a semblance of the reality that is not hard to believe in. But do not be fooled. Knowing what the exact truth is and not the half lies may serve you well when dealing with conditions that root from and are aggravated by thoughts.
If you experience a panic attack for the first time, it is always worth going to get checked out to rule out anything which may be physically wrong with you. Chances are it is nothing serious but a psychological shift in thinking.
At Detoxia Therapies we specialise in treating stress and anxiety,
I am shortly going to be releasing a programme called The Anxiety Freedom Protocol. This programme will enable you to take part in a guided learning experience where at the end you will be able to overcome that anxiety which has had so much hold over how you experience your life. You will, with work and dedication be able to get back to being you before you experienced those overbearing anxious thoughts.
If you are interested in joining this programme as a founding member, please leave a comment saying "founder" below where I will get in touch with you to discuss when we will be able to get started to work together to overcome that anxiety.
If you have found this blog of interest please do like, leave a review and share to as many people as you can, it is only through community sharing, will more people read, and you never know someone who is experiencing panic attacks and anxiety for the first time may need to read this information and may help them to understand how anxiety works.
For now, however I look forward to next week's blog where you will be hearing from a member of my community about his experience with anxiety, depression and suicidal thoughts, plus the steps he took to overcome those feelings and move past a time in his life which was very painful for him.
Thank you for reading, and I look forward to catching up with you again next week.