Panic disorder symptoms are essentially the same as that of a panic attack, except they occur on a larger scale and regularly experience these symptoms. A panic attack occurs when someone has surge of overwhelming anxiety and fear. During an attack, your heart pounds and you find yourself short of breath. You often experience dizziness and upset stomach. The symptoms are very similar to that of a heart attack, which is why the two are often confused when being experienced.
Panic attacks tend to occur when you are out of your comfort zone, typically away from your home. Panic disorder symptoms will reach their peak around 10 minutes into an attack, and typically do not last more than 15 to 25 minutes.
Depending on the size of your attack, you will most likely experience all, or at least some, of these panic disorder symptoms:
• Shortness of breath and fast heartbeat
• Mild to severe chest pain, along with a choking sensation
• Profuse sweating and shaking
• Dizziness, nausea, and upset stomach
• Hot or cold flashes
• The feeling that you are about to die or going crazy
Panic attack symptoms have been included with panic disorder symptoms simply because they are more specified. Many people will experience a panic attack or two, and go on to live a panic-free lifestyle. While this may be the case for most people, others will continually experience panic disorder symptoms throughout their lives if left untreated. These “broader” panic disorder symptoms include:
• Experiencing frequent panic attacks over a period of time. These attacks tend to be unexpected and may not even have a specific event that triggers them.
• You often anticipate having another attack in the future, and the suspense itself makes you overwhelmingly anxious.
• You begin to alter your lifestyle because of past panic occurrences. This could include avoiding certain social situations where you have panicked in the past.
A single attack might only last a few minutes. But, the effects of experiencing panic disorder symptoms can make a major imprint on your emotional state of being. The fear of future attacks have proven to take an emotional toll on people, and if left untreated could cause severe physical and psychological damage to a person.