In scientific terms, panic attack symptoms are simply anxiety. Having been a person that used to struggle with panic attacks regularly I know the dread that accompanies one of these bouts.
Everyone said that I was simply a little too anxious… But no one knew what I had to go through on a daily basis. The emotions I felt were very real… and they were hard to deal with. There were times when the feelings were so strong, I wasn’t even sure that I was having anxiety attacks… I thought I was sick.
So, what are some tell tale panic attack symptoms? The biggest panic attack symptom there is, is the fear of having another attack. If you are always scared of being dizzy or having your chest tighten up, then more than likely you are suffering from an anxious disorder. If you find yourself consciously avoiding specific situations or places because deep down inside you know you are going to exhibit the symptoms, then you are suffering from panic attacks.
Another common symptom is tingling and numbness throughout your body. These symptoms are often thought to be heart problems when in fact they are anxiety (make sure to check with your doctor if you experience this, it’s a lot better to be safe then sorry!)
The tingling is caused by your body’s natural fight or flight instinct. Your body is programmed to move blood away from the skin and extremities during a physical attack. It also draws more blood to areas such as your thighs and biceps to prepare the muscles to work. Your body does this instinctively and it has no way of knowing that the fear you are experiencing is not an actual physical threat.
A very common and scary panic attack symptom is the feeling of not being able to breathe. This causes most people to lose it, and it causes them to fall deeper into a panic attack.
When you breathe too fast your body’s carbon dioxide and oxygen levels get all out of whack. When you breathe too much and too fast you can experience breathlessness, or you can start to hyperventilate… This used to happen to me a lot and I would think I was choking… It felt like I was being smothered by a pillow.
If you are experiencing these symptoms then you are probably experiencing panic attacks. They can be scary when they happen, but once you learn how to treat them like I did, they start to not even bother you.