You feel it building. The fear. Dread. Looming sense of impending doom.
The stress is mounting and you know things are just going to get worse.
You think, “There’s nothing like a panic attack in the morning to start my day.”
I have a friend who is going through a divorce. Two kids, shared custody, you get the idea. It’s not how things were “supposed to be”, and quite frankly, it wasn’t her idea. She’s a high-achieving, recovering perfectionist with a touch of imposter syndrome. (She’d tell you this too, it’s fine!) Well, on those weekends when she doesn’t have her kids, there’s always this low-level, underlying anxiety there. Even when she’s got plenty to do, productivity plans, and self-care time built in.
Nevertheless, it persists. There’s just this constant undercurrent of anxiety in her belly. This feeling like something just “isn’t right”. Then, of course, any time something disrupts her “homeostasis”, a panic attack starts to build. It’s not that she thinks her kids are unsafe. Or, that she even wants to be a single mom with two kids to care for 24/7. But, that feeling is there making it all too common for things to erupt when any other thing goes “wrong” in her world. Negative feedback from someone she cares about. Forgetting to handle something or pick something up. A new medical or COVID diagnosis in her circle of friends or family. Something that would normally be “fine” or just normal-level crappy suddenly feels overwhelming. It stops her from living her life to the fullest, in an instant.
What are some common signs of a panic attack?
What does a panic attack feel like? How do you know if it’s a panic attack, a heart attack, or a sign of something more severe like COVID? Yes, these are all questions I’ve heard from clients and friends just like you. You aren’t crazy for thinking these things. And, most importantly, you are not alone in having these thoughts about anxiety and panic attacks. Actually, they are something many women in Florida deal with at various points throughout their lives.
An estimated 2.7% of U.S. adults had a panic disorder in the past year. In fact, an estimated 4.7% of U.S. adults experience panic disorder at some time in their lives. Women are twice as likely as men to suffer from panic disorder. And, panic disorders typically develop in young adulthood. (Statistics and information from the National Institute on Mental Health)
So, what does a panic attack actually feel like?
The simple, short answer is that every single one is different. They are somewhat different every time and certainly vary by individual. However, there are some common signs to look for.
12 Common Symptoms of a Panic Attack:
- Feeling like you are trapped
- Feeling dizzy or lightheaded
- Tight chest
- Crying uncontrollably
- Fear of losing control
- Feeling like you are going to die
- Difficulty breathing
- Feelings of “unreality” or detachment from one’s surroundings
- Shallow breaths or double-breathing
- Feeling hot or sweaty
Those might all feel familiar. Or, maybe you’ve experienced one or two of these symptoms from time to time and aren’t sure exactly what it was. Of course, I’m not an MD. But, I know you’re no dummy. You landed here. On this page. This blog. For a reason. And, I know that if you’re reading this, you’ve probably already realized what’s going on. Panic attacks are disruptive, disorienting, and disconcerting. You do not have to suffer. In my Broward County therapy practice, I use mindfulness and other counseling methods that work for coping with anxiety and panic attacks. If you’re dealing with panic attacks in Florida, I can help you feel more grounded.
Begin Online Therapy in Florida and Find Relief from Anxiety
If you are looking for a therapist who specializes in helping women, look no further. I am here to support you in your mental health journey. I want to help you feel peaceful and confident in your life. To begin online therapy in Florida, follow these three steps:
Contact Counseling Solutions of Boward to schedule your free 20-minute consultation on a video platform,
Meet with Enid and get to know her!
Begin online therapy in Florida and find peace from the things that are bothering you!