Have you ever experienced sudden, unexpected feelings of fear or anxiety, for seemingly no reason? Maybe you were under a more-than-normal amount of stress at the time and were suddenly overcome by a sense that you might be losing control, or that you might even die.
At some point, just about everyone will have an experience like this, but for many it will remain an isolated incident, something that lasts for a moment and never happens again. For others, though, moments like these might happen quite often and are known as panic attacks.
In the past, panic attacks and panic disorders weren’t considered a serious medical problem, but now we know better. If you regularly experience panic attacks or have been diagnosed with a panic disorder, Dr. Michael Madow can help you regain control of your life again.
The most common symptoms of panic attacks and panic disorders include:
- Feelings of danger
- Rapid heart rate
- Shortness of breath
- Chest pain
But these are just a few of the symptoms you may experience if you have a history of panic attacks or a panic disorder. Feelings of fatigue or exhaustion may accompany them, and you may be left with a strong fear that will have another attack soon. When this fear becomes intense enough, it can actually happen, creating a cycle of attacks that may escalate. If left untreated, your symptoms could be mistaken for another health problem, like a heart attack. What’s more, an untreated panic disorder could lead to the development of crippling phobias, problems with substance abuse, depression, and even suicidal thoughts.
What Causes Panic Attacks and Panic Disorders?
The exact cause of panic attacks and panic disorders isn’t known, but it’s believed that genetics and temperament could both play a role. Stress is also a factor, whether it’s the result of major life changes, traumatic memories or events, or some other cause. Beyond that, what is known for sure is that panic attacks typically affect women more than men, and that they often start happening at a young age.
Have you been living with panic attacks, or do you suspect that you might have an undiagnosed panic disorder? If so, don’t hesitate to schedule an appointment with Dr. Madow’s office in Henderson or Las Vegas today. During a consultation appointment, he will talk to you about your medical history and your experiences with panic attacks. Through talking to you, he can learn more about what might be triggering your attacks. Noting the specific symptoms you’ve experienced and the frequency you experience them can help us as we try to understand your situation and your needs. You might also consider writing down any questions you have for us about treatment. Panic attacks and disorders are often treated with either a prescription medication, therapy, or a combination of the two. The goal of treatment is not to just help you manage your symptoms but to eliminate them entirely. Part of how we can do this is through helping our patients from Henderson, Las Vegas, Summerlin, and Boulder City confront their symptoms in a safe environment so that they no longer feel threatening to you anymore.
Henderson psychiatrist Dr. Michael Madow provides comprehensive psychotherapeutic and psychopharmacological services for patients in Henderson, Las Vegas, Summerlin, and Boulder City.
Dr. Madow’s website is intended for informational and educational purposes only. For a diagnosis, please call our Henderson or Las Vegas office to schedule a consultation visit with Dr. Madow. A diagnosis can only be made under the care of a licensed professional.