An anxiety attack is a short period of strong fear that happens for no apparent reason. An anxiety attack is also known as a panic attack. An anxiety attack can be a one-time event or can become an ongoing problem. If you have two or more anxiety attacks in a month, you may have a condition called panic or anxiety disorder. If anxiety attacks become severe (very bad), they may keep you from living a normal life.
Caregivers do not know for sure what causes anxiety attacks. Sometimes being in a situation that you find upsetting causes them. You may have them due to a stressful life event, such as getting divorced. You are more likely to have anxiety attacks if you also have another mental health problem. Other mental health problems include depression (feeling very sad most or all of the time) or alcoholism (abusing alcoholic drinks). Anxiety attacks may happen for no reason. Anxiety attacks can happen to anyone, regardless of age or gender.
Some health conditions or medicines may cause anxiety attack symptoms. Using or withdrawing from alcohol or illegal drugs may also cause symptoms. Some people have anxiety attacks that are triggered (started) by the fear of having a future anxiety attack. You are more likely to have anxiety attacks if someone in your family also has them.
Your caregiver may do some tests to see if you have other health problem that may be causing anxiety attacks. Counseling may help you understand what is causing the anxiety or fear. It may also be able to help you learn how to deal with your problem. A caregiver may give you medicine to help your anxiety or depression. If you do not get treatment for your anxiety attacks, you may develop other problems, like depression, using illegal drugs, or drinking too much alcohol.
Before taking any herbs or supplements, ask your caregiver if it is OK. Talk to your caregiver about how much you should take. If you are using this medicine without instructions from your caregiver, follow the directions on the label. Do not take more medicine or take it more often than the directions tell you to. The herbs and supplements listed may or may not help treat your condition.
Other ways to treat your symptoms are available to you.
Talk to your caregiver if:
You have the right to help plan your care. To help with this plan, you must learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. You can then discuss your treatment options with your caregivers. Work with them to decide which medicine and care will be used to treat you. You always have the right to refuse treatment.
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