Anxiety Attack – In order to understand the true meaning of the phrase ‘anxiety attack,’ it is essential to understand the difference between ‘anxiety’ and an ‘anxiety attack.’ Anxiety is a normal emotional state of mind that is caused by a reaction to a stressful situation or a distressing physical condition.
This normal condition takes the form of an aberration when the person continues to experience stress even when the stressful situation or condition is long past or if the person experiences severe anxiety or stress in the absence of any obvious stress causing conditions. it is often difficult to distinguish between a heart attack and an anxiety attack, as the indicators for both are almost similar.
An anxiety attack is generally characterized by many or all of the following symptoms; acute escalating tension, pain in the chest, nausea, lightheadedness, dizziness, sweating and loss of one’s view of one’s ‘self’. the individual is said to be experiencing an anxiety attack when he/she begins experiencing many of these symptoms that become severe as the time passes and generally reach a peak within ten minutes.
Types of Anxiety Attack
Anxiety attacks can be divided into several distinct categories, each with its own characteristics and a few symptoms that are common to all categories. the National Institute of mental health divides Anxiety disorder into six main categories; panic disorder, a sudden anxiety attack that may be caused due to no apparent reason; generalized anxiety disorder that affects the individual on a daily basis i.e. he/she suffers from chronic tension; obsessive-compulsive disorder, a condition in which the individual suffers from an urgent need to engage in certain rituals and activities without any need for the individual to engage in them; social phobia, a condition in which the individual feels overly anxious in everyday social situations; specific phobias, the attacks that are caused by a fear, usually irrational, of something and post-traumatic stress disorder, a condition that follows a traumatic event where the individual has persistent thoughts of the event and feels emotionally traumatized.
Medical researchers have found a number of reasons that are considered the possible causes for attacks. Genetics, drug abuse, environment and personality characteristics are considered the main culprits that induce attacks. however, there may be much more triggers of anxiety attacks that have yet to be found by the medical researchers.