What is Panic Attack?

A panic attack is a period of intense fear or discomfort in which 4 or more of the following symptoms begin abruptly and reach a peak within 10 minutes. The duration of a panic attack is variable. It may take 10_20 minutes or longer.

Palpitations, increased heart rate


shaking or shaking

Shortness of breath or feeling like suffocating


Chest pain or feeling of tightness in the chest

nausea or abdominal pain

Dizziness, feeling light-headed, feeling like you’re about to fall or pass out

Derealization (feelings of unreality) or depersonalization (detachment)

Fear of losing control or going crazy

The fear of death

Paresthesias (feeling numbness or tingling)

Chills, chills or hot flashes

What is Panic Disorder

There are recurrent unexpected panic attacks. In between attacks, there is a constant worry that there will be more Panic Attacks. There is a constant state of sadness in the belief that Panic Attacks can lead to dire consequences, such as “having a heart attack and dying”, “losing control and going crazy” or “having a stroke”. It is a mental disorder in which some behavioral changes are seen, such as not going to work, not doing sports, not drinking some food or beverages, carrying medicine, water, alcohol, and various foods as a precaution against attacks and possible bad consequences.

What Causes Panic Disorder?

Panic Disorder occurs in 1-3% of the population. It is 2 times more common in women than men. There are two scientific explanations for why panic disorder occurs.

  1. Panic disorder occurs as a result of abnormal functioning of some brain hormones, which are secreted from nerve cells called neurons in our brain, regulating our excitement and emotional lives.

  2. Panic disorder is when physical symptoms such as palpitation, sweating, shortness of breath or dizziness, which are completely natural and harmless and occur as a result of some of our behaviors in our daily life, are evaluated by the patient as symptoms of a bad illness, and as a result “I am having a heart attack”, “I am going crazy”. ”, “I will be paralyzed”, “I will die” etc.

People who had their first panic attack; He may have an intense fear of death or paralysis, thinking he is having a heart attack. Sometimes, he starts to fear that he will harm himself or those around him, thinking that he is starting to lose control or going crazy, which is caused by strangeness, stupor, feeling strange and different in his head.

Patients are often taken to emergency rooms with great fear and anxiety. EKG, blood tests, sometimes CT and other examinations are done … The patient is given serum and sedatives are administered. Sometimes Doctors send the patient home saying you have nothing. The patient tries to make sense of what he is experiencing in a state of bewilderment and fear.

When the attacks start to recur, the patients go to the emergency services again. Tests are renewed. Other doctors are consulted. Patients usually come with a large examination bag when they come to psychiatry. Sometimes, by being misdiagnosed, different drugs such as antibiotics, breath fresheners, palpitation medicine, blood pressure medicine, heart medicine, vitamins are started, but no results can be obtained.

What is Anticipatory Anxiety

As the attacks continue to recur, the patient in the period between attacks; tense, restless, anxious, he begins to wait for a new attack to come at any moment. This anxious anticipation is called Anticipatory anxiety. The fact that attacks often come at uncertain times and places increases this anxiety even more. Fears of dying from a heart attack, being paralyzed, or losing control and going crazy as attacks become more frequent

What is Agoraphobia

More than 60% of patients begin to avoid situations and places where the attacks will come. He cannot stay at home alone, cannot go out alone. He cannot get on vehicles or elevators. They cannot enter crowded places such as market places and department stores at all or they need someone with them. The inability of patients to go to places where they think they will have a panic attack alone, and not to stay in such places, is called Agoraphobia.

Treatment of Panic Disorder

Panic disorder is a treatable disease. Panic disorder is certainly not a disease that causes death, insanity, or paralysis. There are two types of treatment approaches.

Drug Treatment: The patient should use the drugs recommended by the psychiatrist regularly according to the clinic of the disease. The dose of drug therapy is adjusted by the doctor with regular controls. Average usage time is 1 year. When clinical improvement is achieved, the psychiatrist gradually tapering off the drug.

Cognitive Behavioral Treatment: It is aimed to correct the patient’s misinformation and beliefs about Panic Attack symptoms, which are actually completely harmless, and to teach patients to cope with these symptoms without fear. It is aimed to gradually compare the places and situations that he avoids to be alone because he is afraid of the future, so that he overcomes his fears by enabling him to overcome his fears.

What is Depression

Depression (Major Depressive Disorder); It is a common medical disease that negatively affects our emotions, thoughts and behaviors. Depression leads to a variety of emotional and physical symptoms. During a two-week period, the presence of five of the symptoms accompanying depressed mood and/or loss of interest and pleasure with a change in the previous level of functioning is required for diagnosis.

What are the Symptoms of Depression

Depressed Mood; Feeling sad, sad, unhappy all the time

Desire for interest in daily activities, loss of pleasure

appetite changes; Overeating or loss of appetite

Insomnia or excessive sleepiness

Fatigue, exhaustion or loss of energy

Feelings of worthlessness or guilt

Inability to think or concentrate on a particular topic, or indecisiveness

Recurring ideas of death or suicide

What Causes Depression

There is no single cause of depression. Each of the psychological, biological, and social factors can cause depression. It can be seen at any age in society from childhood to old age. It is seen in 8-10% of the society.

What Are the Risk Factors for Depression

Being a woman, job loss, alcohol or substance use, divorce, loss of a loved one, previous depression, life events, presence of a family history of depression, some medications used, hormonal changes are risk factors for some diseases.

How to Diagnose Depression

Depression is a well-defined and classified illness. A good history from the patient is usually sufficient for the diagnosis. When the psychiatrist deems it necessary, he may request psychological tests, blood tests and consultation from other branches for differential diagnosis.

Depression Treatment

First of all, the psychiatrist should inform patients and their families about the symptoms and course of this disorder. Recognizing the clinical features of the disease is extremely important in terms of how to organize a treatment.

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