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Mental Illness - Essay Example

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An anxiety disorder occurs when someone has a distinct feeling that makes them nervous or anxious over things that occur in everyday life. There are…
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Mental Illness
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Running head: PANIC DISORDER AND AGORAPHOBIA What Panic Disorder and Agoraphobia Are School What Panic Disorder and Agoraphobia Are
A mental order that is characterized by a feeling of anxiety or other related symptoms are considered to be anxiety disorders. An anxiety disorder occurs when someone has a distinct feeling that makes them nervous or anxious over things that occur in everyday life. There are numerous types of anxiety disorders. The one this paper will focus on is panic disorder. Anxiety disorders can often bring about panic attacks which are a rush of adrenaline felt giving the person a fight or flight feeling. Panic disorder is described as a situation such as when a patient feels panic attacks often out of the blue or for no reason at all, even when sleeping (Anxiety Disorders Association of America, 2011).
Panic attacks usually last for a short duration of time in which a person is subject to stress and overload of anxiety and they have a sudden intensity of that anxiety. A panic attack is characterized by a person having heart palpitations, sweating, trembling and shaking, shortness of breath, a feeling of choking, chest pains, nausea, dizzy and lightheaded sensations, numbing or tingling sensations, a feeling of distance from reality or from oneself, a fear of dying, losing control or going crazy (Panic attack, American Psychiatric Association, 1994).
Panic attacks can often lead to panic disorder. This is mental illness that is characterized by a series of panic attacks that a person experiences over a period of time due to anxiety and stress. It is a recurrence of this unexpected panic attacks that create the disorder. Many times it is diagnosed with or without agoraphobia present (Panic disorder with agoraphobia, American Psychiatric Association, 1994).
Agoraphobia is the condition in which a sufferer of the panic disorder often begins to have continuous concern that another panic attack will come on. It is the anticipation of going to a certain place where they fear that a panic attack will occur. It is often difficult for people to travel beyond their comfort zones without suffering from severe anxiety. Many people find it hard to go to shopping malls, ride a bus or attend theater or sports performances because of the urge to need to find a quick route to get out so that they do not become embarrassed if they were to have an anxiety attack (Anxiety Disorders Association of America, 2011).
Patients are worried that certain situations will cause them to have a panic attack and therefore sometimes start to avoid situations which make them anxious or nervous. They are often afraid to do something as simple as even leaving their home for fear that they will have a panic attack. Panic attacks without agoraphobia is the condition in which the person does not worry about additional attacks in the future (Panic disorder with agoraphobia, American Psychiatric Association, 1994).
According to the Anxiety Disorders Association of America, (2011), most of the time, panic disorder and agoraphobia are brought on in life by too much stress in someones life and their inability to emotionally cope. Therefore, a chemical imbalance in the brain can be going on and the panic attacks heighten the adrenaline immediately. According to this information, nearly six million adults suffer from panic disorder in the United States. Panic disorder and agoraphobia typically develops in early adulthood. Panic disorder is twice as likely to occur in females than in males. Additionally, one in three people who have panic disorder also begin to develop agoraphobia.
Through treatments, both medical and even cognitive behavioral therapy, relief can be found. Even people that have suffered from panic disorder and agoraphobia for numerous years can learn to cope and soon have their lives on track. Living with agoraphobia, panic disorder and anxiety can be very debilitating and the person my often find themselves living in a shadow of a person they once were (Anxiety Disorders Association of America, 2011).
Works Cited
Anxiety Disorders Association of America. (2011). Panic disorder and agoraphobia. Anxiety Disorders Association of America. Silver Spring Maryland: Anxiety Disorders Association of America. Retrieved from http://www.adaa.org/understanding- anxiety/panic-disorder-agoraphobia.
American Psychatric Association. (1994) Panic attack. Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, fourth edition. Washington, D.C.: American Psychiatric Association. Retrieved from http://www.behavenet.com/capsules/ disorders/panicattk.htm.
American Psychatric Association. (1994) Panic disorder with agoraphobia. Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, fourth edition. Washington, D.C.: American Psychiatric Association. Retrieved from http://www.behave.net/com/capsules/
disorders/pncdiswaphob.htm. Read More
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