Panic Attack Symptoms

With the number of people suffering from panic attacks in the millions, it seems this problem is more common than you originally thought. If you feel you may have had panic attacks yourself but you are not really sure, read on to see if any of these symptoms sound all too familiar.

First off, keep in mind that you may not experience all these symptoms. Everyone is different and may experience things in different ways. The following are the most common panic attack symptoms:

* tight feeling in the chest
* increased heart rate
* hot flushed feeling
* excessive sweating or clamminess
* shortness of breath
* hyperventilating
* nausea
* muscle tension
* dizziness
* terror
* fear of impending doom

For many people, the first time they experience a panic attack they feel like they’re having a heart attack or are dying. They’re rushed to the hospital only to find that their heart is fine and the doctors can’t find anything physically wrong. If the idea of panic attacks is not brought up, they’re left feeling that something is wrong with them and they begin to visit different medical doctors trying to determine what it is.

Panic attacks occur when the “fight or flight” adrenaline goes into overdrive. Your body believes that it is about to be attacked and brings forth all the responses that would go along with a seriously dangerous situation. The trouble is, the event at hand does not warrant this behavior. Yes, you know your fear is way out of proportion but you are unable to stop it. You can say to yourself, “This is silly, I’m just going to drive on this freeway for 5 miles as I’ve done many times in the past” but your body reacts anyway.

Even scarier is realizing that these attacks can happen at any time. Some people wake up in the middle of the night with them or have them occur when doing something as benign as watching TV.

It is commonly believed that panic attack disorder can be triggered by any of the following:

* stress, situational or long-term
* hormones
* post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
* possibly excessive sugar or caffeine

The worst part is anticipating or worrying that you will have another panic attack. In fact, the worry can be enough to bring on a panic attack. Added to that it seems each episode is burned into your brain and you feel if you’re in the same situation or location, you will surely have another episode. Because of this you start avoiding these situations or locations. But avoidance behavior is not the answer.

If these symptoms ring true for you, seek answers. You don’t have to continue to suffer from panic attacks, there is treatment available.

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How Is Stress Affecting You?

Stress is something everyone deals with off and on throughout life. Stress is how our bodies react to the ever changing external influences in our lives. Depending on how we view it, stress can be positive or negative. Most of the time when we feel stressed, we know it. We can consciously say, “I am stressed out.” But sometimes, our bodies do the talking for us loud and clear.

There are many physical symptoms that can be stress-related:
muscle tension
poor sleep patterns
high blood pressure
chest pain
possibly diabetes
possibly certain types of cancer

Mental symptoms can include:
panic attacks
suicidal thoughts
paranoid thoughts
relationship issues

Everyone is different in what they consider stressful and in how they handle stressful situations. Stress can never be totally avoided, and some stress is good because it helps us to grow. Stress can be caused by a loved one’s death as well as a move to a bigger house or starting a great new job.

Short term stress is easier to manage because the end is in sight and the person knows it’s temporary. When stress is seen as long-term, such as a life-long disability, the person needs to learn ways to handle the stress.

There are many acceptable ways of dealing with stress and it’s a matter of finding what will work in each case. It would be wise to learn several coping techniques so that if one doesn’t work, another can be tried. Sometimes it will take several of the techniques to make a dent in the stress.

What triggers the stress? Examine the triggers and put a name to them so that they’re not lurking in the subconscious. Sometimes it’s best to walk away or avoid situations that can become stressful.

Meditation is a huge stress reliever as well as a stress preventative. Meditation can be practiced for short time periods and still be effective. Keeping the routine going is key.

Exercise is a good coping mechanism, especially when the “flight or fight” response is racing through the body. Taking a brisk walk, running up some stairs, playing a game of racquetball, or following an exercise tape can work.

Sometimes the answer is a vacation to give the body a break from the stress and give the mind a chance to have a fresh perspective on the situation. Even just a day off doing something entertaining can mean a decrease in stress levels.

Talk it out with an understanding and empathetic friend. It feels like such a relief to get it “off your chest”, as long as both people then move on and don’t keep rehashing it.

There are times when it’s best to seek help from a qualified professional. They can offer even more positive methods of dealing with stress.

Some stress is a natural part of everyone’s life and even helps us to take action and grow. When your body is giving you physical or mental signs of too much stress, be kind to yourself and try the coping methods mentioned in this article.

How Is Stress Affecting You?

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Aging Skin, What Can You Do?

The older we get, the more our skin starts to show its age and we get wrinkles. It’s part of life, right? Yes, but there are ways to slow down the process. If you’re willing to take some healthy lifestyle steps now, your skin will look a lot better when you get older. Let’s take a look at some of the things you can do to prevent your skin from sagging and looking unhealthy prematurely.

Keep in mind that aging is a normal process, and skin will sag to some degree as you get older. This is because it loses elasticity over time and gravity starts to win. The areas around the eyes and mouth begin to develop deeper lines, and over time the entire face can begin to sag. More blemishes are also a common experience for many people as they get older. And you thought you were done with pimples after high school? Rosacea, reddened blotches with visible tiny red blood vessels on the face, can begin to show up for some as they get older.

Many people don’t take care of their skin through the years and resort to cosmetic surgery to try to get rid of the signs of aging. Some of these methods work and some don’t but really, it’s better to try to prevent or slow down the problems in the first place.

First, try to protect your skin from temperature extremes. Very hot or cold conditions will dry it and cause it to look older. If you live in a dry climate, your forced-air heating can really dry your skin. If this is the case, a humidifier in your home is a must.

Tanning can also be a real problem down the road since it causes long term damage. Too much sun exposure can also lead to skin cancers. Yes, you can have them removed but are you ready for the scars they leave? Wear sunscreen now to prevent problems later.

Harsh soaps and other cleansers can strip the moisture from your skin. Read the labels and avoid drying agents such as rubbing alcohol.

Environmental issues, such as smoke and pollution can do a number on your skin. Smoking is extremely hard on the whole body and it’s no surprise that it damages the skin too. The obvious answers here would be: don’t smoke, don’t hang around second-hand smoke, and live somewhere where the air is relatively clean.

Look for natural moisturizing methods when you can. Something as simple as vitamin E oil or coconut oil can be just as effective as expensive moisturizing products. Avoid excessive use of cosmetics, which may contain ingredients that can eventually cause problems with your skin. To stay looking fresh and natural, it’s a good idea to spend as much time that way (natural) as you can. That doesn’t mean you have to go without makeup entirely, of course. Learn about cosmetic ingredients, and know what you’re putting on your skin.

Diet and exercise have a huge effect on the health of aging skin, too. Pay attention to what you drink and avoid excessive consumption of caffeine and sugary drinks. Pure water is usually the best choice. Drink lots of it and you’ll look and feel better. Add a regular, moderate exercise program in to keep the blood flowing to your skin.

Pay attention to these factors, plus get enough sleep and try to diffuse stress, and you’ll have done your best for your skin. Why resort to gimmicks, when simple healthy living and a few quality skin care products are all you really need to look younger, longer?

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