If you have ever experienced an anxiety attack, you know they are real. You also know that it is one of the most terrifying things you can go through. Often times an anxiety attack begins slowly with an increasing sense of doom or that you are in terrible danger. Fear begins to make your heart race, your skin burn, your throat tightens, and an overall sense of your body and mind being out of control. Anxiety attacks are a very personal experience; not everyone experiences them in the same manner. Some people may have more symptoms than others. What is true is that when you are in the middle of an attack, you feel scared, helpless, and are overwhelmed with fear.
Emotional & Cognitive Symptoms
Each human body is unique; our chemistry’s are just different from person to person. Additionally, our emotional makeup and our ability to handle stress vary greatly. Confusion, distress, fear, thoughts you are loosing control and feeling detached from reality are all possible emotional symptoms of an anxiety attack. They may manifest themselves differently in different people, but at their core, they are real. Panic can ensue and you may feel that you just have to get out of a room, or conversely, you just must crawl into bed. Some people pace, rock back and forth, or curl into the fetal position. We all handle severe anxiety in different ways; we all have unique coping systems that allow us to survive.
Many people experience trembling and shaking without or without shortness of breath or a difficulty in breathing. Dizziness, lightheadedness and a loss of coordination and balance are common in some individuals. Shooting pains in the neck, face, chest and shoulder as possible during an anxiety attack. If you feel you may be experiencing a heart attack, do not delay in consulting with a medical professional. Many cardiovascular symptoms during a heart attack mimic those of an anxiety attack.
Digestive System & Skin Symptoms
During an anxiety attack, some people may come under digestive system distress. This can include an upset stomach, vomiting, nausea, tight abdominal muscles and diarrhea. Some individuals experience blushing, or conversely blanching of their skin. Skin may feel it is burning or that you have ants crawling all over you. These are perfectly common symptoms. You may experience numbness or pins and needles in your extremities or around your neck or chest area. This is often particularly worrisome to individuals in the middle of an anxiety attack.
Regardless of the symptoms you or a love one experience, it remains true that an anxiety attack is all-consuming and frightening. Many of the symptoms above are your body’s way of telling you that you are in danger. At its core level, an anxiety attack is a form of our “flight or fight” instincts. Biologically, our body is experiencing a rush of adrenalin and hormones and this is the root cause for the symptoms. There is no one answer as to the cause of anxiety attacks; they are experienced by every nationality, every gender, and every age. They are universal in generating fear and panic. If you experience an anxiety attack, remember you are not alone; millions of people around the world every day are going through what you are going through.