If you have heard about an anxiety attack, you know how scary it can be. But sometimes people have misconceptions about what is an Anxiety attack vs panic attack. They think anxiety attacks and panic attacks are the same. But the reality is something else.
It’s frightening being unable to control your own body and mind during these attacks. That’s why it is essential to know the difference between the both. So that you can identify it correctly and find its cure as early as possible.
In this article, you will learn about anxiety attack vs panic attack, their symptoms, causes, and treatment. Also, we will discuss, How long do anxiety attacks and panic attacks last? First, let’s take a brief note of these two incongruous attacks.
Anxiety Attack vs Panic attack
An anxiety attack is a feeling of fear and worry, it can increase gradually and with time it becomes severe. It also involves physical symptoms like nausea, fast heart rate, and muscle tension. Anxiety attack is not a clinically diagnosed condition, it’s a feeling of increased anxiety.
A panic attack, meanwhile, can happen without any specific reason. Symptoms of a panic attack are far more severe than anxiety. It needs immediate control over the condition of the person. Panic attack recognized as a diagnosable condition can be controlled by medication and home remedies.
Anxiety attack vs Panic attack (Causes)
You might get a hint from above that how immense can be these both attacks if not controlled on time, especially panic attack. There are two types of panic attacks diagnosed clinically – expected panic attack and unexpected panic attack. An anxiety attack and expected panic attack can be triggered by the following reasons.
What causes anxiety attacks?
Stressful events like a sudden death in the family, workload, financial instability, and drug use or withdrawal can cause an anxiety attack. Anxiety attacks can also cause due to health problems like diabetes, thyroid, and heart diseases.
What cause panic attacks?
As discussed earlier, a panic attack’s cause is not known, as it may come suddenly and without any warning at first, but over the cause of time, it usually triggered by certain situations like the sense of clogging danger or reaction to a life-threatening situation.
Major stress like loss of property due to sudden fire or the feeling of detachment from your loved one can become a cause of panic attack.
Anxiety attack symptoms
Excessive fear or worry is the main symptoms of anxiety attack. Some common symptoms of anxiety attack are:
- Due to an anxiety attack, you cannot stay calm and still, also overthink situations (rumination).
- Shortness of breath, dry mouth, nausea, tense muscle, and dizziness.
- You will be unable to concentrate on anything may it’s your favorite movie, but you didn’t enjoy watching it.
Panic attack symptoms
You may experience a panic attack anywhere. It can be at your office, during sound sleep, When you are driving a car, etc. A panic attack has many variations and can typically include some symptoms mentioned below:
- Rapid heart rate, sweating, chills, chest pain, and nausea.
- Shaking of hands and faintness.
- Shortness of breath or tightness in the throat, abdominal cramping.
What should you do to stop anxiety and panic attacks?
Anxiety and panic attacks are different but share some symptoms. Acknowledging the symptoms and diagnose them earlier will help you to lessen anxiety and fear and improve your lifestyle.
The following strategies will help you to overcome from anxiety or panic attacks:
1. Deep and slow breathing
One symptom, which is very dangerous for you is difficulty in breathing, which is the common symptom of anxiety or panic attacks. To control this symptom, you can take deep and slow breaths, count from 1 to 4, inhale and exhale, to slow down the rate of breathing until you feel good and the symptoms subside.
2. Practice mindfulness activities
Practice some relaxation techniques and mindfulness activities to calm your thought process. Actively notice your emotions and sensations and try not to react to them immediately.
For example: If you do not like any conversation or anything which makes you feel conscious and uncomfortable, leave it. Go to another room or do some other activities which remove your attention from those things.
Treatment without medications
Anxiety and depression association of America recommended some home remedies to manage stress and anxiety, they are:
Always maintain a positive attitude towards the situation. It will help you to manage stress which comes out as a result of negative thinking.
Practice meditation and yoga every day.
Introduce a healthy and balanced diet in your lifestyle.
Take at least 8 hours of sleep at night to avoid whole day mood swings and stress.
Limit the intake of alcohol and caffeine.
3. Do medicines help to control anxiety and panic attacks?
Medication can help reduce symptoms in people with severe panic and anxiety attacks. Doctors may prescribe the following medicines:
- Anti-anxiety drugs
It is essential to follow the doctor’s instruction when using these drugs.
4. Consult therapist
Therapy is another worthy option to beat these attacks and regenerate the power of self-confidence and stability in you. Engaging in therapy can help you to identify triggers and manage symptoms. It also aims to help you to accept your past and encourage working towards your future.
Cognitive-behavioral therapy is one of them. It is especially for the people who are victims of anxiety and panic attacks and helpful to them.
From the above article, while discussing anxiety attack vs panic attack, you may have learnt that anxiety and panic attacks can be riotous, but self-help strategies can reduce the intensity of these symptoms. By acknowledging the symptoms and immediate call for action can reduce the future episodes of these attacks.
You should seek help from a therapist and take medication if symptoms are intense. You can win this battle for yourself and lead a normal and happy life ahead.