If you have recurring panic attacks for at least one month and are so afraid to get a new attack that you start to avoid certain situations and places, you may have had something called panic disorder.
If your anxiety and fear of panic attacks control and limit your life, you may have panic disorder. This is something you may need treatment for. But how do you know if you’ve had an attack? These are some symptoms of panic disorder
*You feel your heart beats unusually hard or fast.
*You may find it difficult to breathe or feel a weight over your chest.
*You get a stomach ache, feel bad or feel it like a “lump” in your throat or stomach.
*You’ll be frozen or sweaty.
*You feel dizzy or like you’r about to faint.
*You feel tingling or numbness in your hands or feet.
*You tremble, shake or feel weak in your muscles.
To get rid of panic syndrome we need to learn a new way to handle our feelings. And one way to do that is to use socratic questions.
*What evidence or facts speak for what you say / think now?
*What evidence or facts speak against what you say / think now?
*Do you think everyone should see it as proof?
*Are these facts or interpretations?
*Is there any other way to look at this?
*What’s the worst that could happen? Would you survive it?
*Is there a more nuanced way to look at this?
*What would it mean to you if it is what you think / belive?
*In what way are your feelings of this thought affected?
*Is the thought helpful to you or does it prevent you from achieving your goals?
*How do you think about your way of thinking?
I keep this list of questions with me in my purse at all times. You may feel a bit silly at first, but soon you start asking these questions automatically when you feel an attack is coming.
Do you suffer from panic disorder? Or perhaps you know someone who does. I would love to hear how you deal with this issue.