Panic Attack Vs Anxiety Attack

What is the difference between Panic Attack and Anxiety Attack

People often talk about panic attacks and anxiety attacks like they are the same thing. A panic attack is a sudden episode of intense fear that triggers severe physical reactions when there is no real danger or apparent cause. An anxiety attack is a sudden and intense episode of fear and anxiety. These anxiety attacks can sometimes be linked to specific triggers.

The latest edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) recognizes panic attacks and categorizes them as unexpected or expected. Expected panic attacks happen for reasons like phobias or external stress. Unexpected ones come for no apparent reason. Anxiety attacks aren’t recognized in the DSM-5.

Panic attacks and anxiety attacks sometimes feel similar. They have a lot of similar symptoms.

Symptoms of Panic Attacks are:

  • Fear
  • A sense of detachment from the world
  • Fear of dying
  • Fear of losing control

Symptoms of Anxiety Attacks are:

  • Worry
  • Distress
  • Restlessness
  • Fear

Some common symptoms of both the attacks are:

  • Heart palpitations
  • Chest pain
  • Shortness of breath
  • Feels like choking
  • Dry Mouth
  • Sweating
  • Chills
  • Trembling or shaking
  • Nausea
  • Headache
  • Feeling dizzy

Some triggers of Panic Attacks are:

  • A stressful job
  • Driving
  • Social situations
  • Phobias
  • Reminders or memories of traumatic experiences
  • Chronic illnesses
  • Withdrawal from drugs or alcohol
  • Caffeine
  • Medication and supplements
  • Thyroid problems

It is advisable to get a diagnosis from a certified doctor if these symptoms are hindering your daily life tasks.