Counselling For Panic Attacks – It should come as no surprise that your body can experience physical reactions to stressful situations—everyone has likely had a sudden shock that caused your heart to race or intense nerves and anxiety that made your skin clammy and you start to sweat. However, when you experience a panic attack, the physiological symptoms are overwhelming and temporarily all-consuming. Once you experience one attack, you begin to avoid situations that might trigger more, resulting in social effects as well as impaired mental health. Fortunately, working with a licensed counsellor such as one of the therapists at Horizon Plymouth can help to greatly reduce the symptoms and severity of your panic attacks, resulting in a greater independence and improved control over your life.

Symptoms of a panic attack

Panic attacks have very clear physiological symptoms. Their intensity and severity take over almost all aspects of body function, and many people report feeling as if they are having a severe heart attack or as though thinking in the moment that they might die. Although everyone experiences the symptoms of panic attacks slightly differently, there are some hallmark symptoms that are frequently noted during an attack.

  • Constriction of throat or chest so that you can’t breathe  
  • Blurred, tunnel, or splotchy vision
  • Nausea and/or vomiting
  • Rapid or irregular heartbeat
  • Excessive sweating and clammy skin
  • Dissociation
  • Dizziness or severe headache 

Additionally, this symptom list does not include the mental symptoms of panic attacks, such as constant anxiety over recurrence, limiting social participation, and perseverance upon the triggers and effects of the attacks. In this way, symptoms of panic attacks are truly all-consuming and require the help of an expert counsellor to mitigate. Nearly anything can trigger a panic attack, especially if the triggering event has negative or traumatic memories associated with it. Some of the common causes or triggers of panic attacks are:

  • Places or people associated with a traumatic event  
  • The loss of a loved one
  • Stimulants such as drugs, alcohol, or excessive caffeine
  • Long periods of excessive stress

Learning what your triggers for panic attacks are can help you to better avoid situations that might be panic inducing, but this is a temporary solution. Ultimately, the help of a professional counsellor such as one of Horizon Plymouth’s team is required to be able to begin seeking mental peace.

How can counselling for panic attacks help?

Although panic attacks are a temporary debilitation, the effects can seriously impact an individual’s mental health and ability to function successfully in day-to-day life. Having a panic attack is a frightening experience that can occur at any time without warning and leaves the individually emotionally and mentally drained. Over time, stress centred around the fear of having another panic attack and losing control can cause further exacerbation of symptoms and coexisting conditions such as anxiety and depressive disorders. 

Additionally, experiencing frequent panic attacks might indicate the presence of panic disorder. Speaking with one of the qualified counsellors at Horizon Plymouth can help you regain some control over your life and work through the feelings that surround your attacks in order to prevent further development of symptoms. Because panic attacks and panic disorder are closely related to anxiety disorders, the symptoms are treated similarly. Our counsellors can also help you identify potential triggers and use personal therapy which can include CBT to help you reframe your reactions towards these events.

If you are suffering from panic attacks, know that you are not alone and speaking with one of Horizon Plymouth’s counsellors can help you to reduce the frequency and severity of your panic attacks and break free from the anxiety and fear that they may cause. Don’t wait—contact Horizon Plymouth to schedule your initial consultation and take the first step towards better mental health today.

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