The symptoms of an anxiety attack are sudden and extreme and can mimic the symptoms associated with a heart attack. Because of this, anxiety attacks are one of the primary reasons that people rush to the emergency room believing they are suffering a heart attack.
Most people will have at least one anxiety attack at some point during their lifetime, but by keeping a positive focus and pursuing good mental and physical health, you can stop an attack from occurring.
In reality, anxiety attacks more closely resemble a form of seizure as the victim is paralyzed in the grips of terror. This can occur for no apparent or perceivable reason and generally will last for several minutes. The terms anxiety attack and panic attack are commonly used interchangeably.
Stress can play a major factor in the onset of an anxiety attack. Stress has a role in all of our lives as it serves as motivation to move us to take action and in moderation it aids in the balance of hormones and chemicals in our brain. However, when stress levels climb to higher proportions it can trigger an anxiety attack resulting in a wide array of possible symptoms.
These symptoms can include heart palpitations, tightness in the throat and chest making it difficult to breathe, cold and clammy skin, profuse sweating, dizziness or fainting, nausea, stomach cramps and trembling. It is not uncommon for the victim to have feelings of intense fear even to the point of feeling as if they are near death.
It is important to realize that an anxiety attack, though quite disturbing, is not life threatening. There are a few diet modifications that will help alleviate the symptoms of an anxiety attack. Start by avoiding caffeine or similar stimulants. Steering clear of processed foods and foods that contain chemicals and preservatives is also helpful. Try to eat regular meals to help stabilize your blood sugar levels and avoid cigarettes and alcohol as their effects tend to exaggerate the symptoms of anxiety.
If you experience a sudden attack that you cannot control, you should seek professional help immediately. Should your symptoms include pain in the jaw, neck or arm, be aware that you could possibly be experiencing a heart attack and no delay should be taken before calling for help
While anxiety attacks can be terrifying and even become crippling to some victims as they begin to alter their lifestyle to avoid situations that may precipitate an attack, there are treatment options available. Doctors can prescribe medications such as anti-depressants to help control the symptoms. Many people have also found great success using alternative treatments which focus on eliminating the cause and fear of having anxiety attacks without having to deal with the side effects common with prescription medications.