Panic Disorder Research Paper

Topics: Panic attack, Anxiety, Anxiety disorders Pages: 4 (999 words) Published: April 12, 2017

The world is in a panic. Everyone is shaking; their hearts are racing. Their hands and feet are going numb, and they cannot get a grasp on reality. This is not just a panic that is happening; it is a panic disorder. A panic disorder is, “an abrupt surge of intense fear or intense discomfort that reaches a peak within minutes, and which during the time four (or more) of the following symptoms occur: palpitations, sweating, shaking, shortness of breath, feelings of choking, nausea, dizziness, chill/heat sensations, numbness, derealization, fear of losing control, or fear of dying.” (Stein, Yang & Campbell-Sils, para 2). It also has to be something reoccurring that is not also connected to another type of disorder, such as social anxiety, post-traumatic...

The only difference is the amount of time it has been happening. In order for an attack to meet the diagnostic criteria of a panic disorder it must occur unexpectedly, there must be a cluster of at least four panic attacks in a given month, and it must be followed by a continued fear of these panic attacks happening in the following month (National Institute of Health, para 9).
Development and Course of Disorder:
This disorder may take time to develop or it may take no time at all. The most common ages that experience this disorder are middle teens and early adulthood. This can be approximated to about ages sixteen to twenty-five. There is not much research on the causes of this disorder. Researchers do know that the panic attacks start out slow and become more frequent. Eventually it causes fear in an individual and avoidance of certain places where they may not feel safe (National Institute of Health, para 16).

It can be caused by genetics or environmental risk factors; the largest risk factor being stress. This disorder can be very hard to diagnose due to its connections with other disorders such as anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, and many more. Panic disorder can cause emotional distress, drug abuse, alcoholism, prescription drug abuse, heart attack, and/or death. It also is not an instant diagnosis. The panic attacks must frequent to the amount of four times in one month; the second month must follow with a frequent fear of these attacks occurring again. As stated before, the causes of this disorder are not obvious or predictable. Panic disorder is a mental disorder which can be treated or medicated in the proper...
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