Panic Disorder

Panic disorder is diagnosed in people who experience spontaneous, seemingly out-of-the-blue, panic attacks and are preoccupied with the fear of a recurring attack. Panic attacks occur unexpectedly, sometimes even during sleep.

Experiencing a panic attack doesn’t necessarily mean you have panic disorder. Panic disorder is characterised by repeated and unexpected panic attacks that severely disrupt your life. Suffering from a panic disorder may involve worrying about future panic attacks and changing your behaviour as a result, such as avoiding places or situations where panic attacks have previously occurred.

A panic attack is an intense rush of fear or anxiety that reaches a peak within a few minutes and includes at least four of the following symptoms:

  • a feeling of imminent danger or doom
  • the need to escape
  • heart palpitations
  • sweating
  • trembling
  • shortness of breath or a smothering feeling
  • a feeling of choking
  • chest pain or discomfort
  • nausea or abdominal discomfort
  • dizziness or light headedness
  • a sense of things being unreal, depersonalization
  • a fear of losing control or “going crazy”
  • a fear of dying
  • tingling sensation
  • chills or heat flush

 Our highly experienced therapists can help you to understand your panic disorder, and learn mechanisms to overcome your panic attacks through therapies such as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), and Mindfulness based therapy.