A panic attack is a mental health condition and syptoms are sudden and intense psychologically and physically. Symptoms of panic are frightening and often happen for no clear reason. They usually last between 5 and 20 minutes and, while they feel frightening, they do not cause any physical harm. The symptoms of a panic attack are caused by the body going into a "fight or flight" mode in response to what is perceived as a threat. The body tries to take in more oxygen and breathing quickens. At the same time the body also releases a hormone such as adrenaline, causing your heart to beat faster and your muscles to tense up. Some sufferers may require counselling with a psychiatrist to address their involuntary reactions to perceived fear, as well as finding a better coping technique. However, slowing your breathing; taking deep, slow breaths through the nose and breathing out through the mouth, will help your levels of carbon dioxide in your blood return to normal. If these attacks persist, it is wise to seek help from your GP as it may be a sign of other conditions such as PTSD or stress.
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