Navigating Panic: 10 Triggers for Panic Attacks You Should Know

A panic attack can happen to anyone. Very often, we have some impression we have gone crazy or have lost control over ourselves. Although this is a frightening situation, learning more about panic attacks can help us remember that it has nothing to do with crazy. A panic attack is often related to a trigger. Usually, triggers are either physical or mental, but there are cases when panic attacks shock you out of nowhere.

Panic attacks are sudden periods of intense fear, including palpitations, sweating, shaking, shortness of breath, numbness, or a feeling that something terrible will happen. The most severe symptoms occur within minutes. Typically, they last 30 minutes, but the duration can vary from seconds to hours. There may be a fear of losing control or chest pain. Panic attacks themselves are not typically dangerous physically.

Panic attacks often occur with other mental disorders, particularly major depressive disorder, bipolar disorder, certain personality disorders, and post-traumatic stress disorder. The triggers of these attacks can be very different for each person. For this reason, it is vital to identify the causes to react appropriately in an emergency.

Here are some of the most common triggers:

Stress at Work

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Stress at work is one of the most common triggers for panic attacks. Stress alone can cause depression and anxiety and give rise to physical ailments. Prime causes of stress at work include changes in job complexity, increasing workloads, and taking up extra duties. Layoffs, challenging relationships with colleges, poor performance reviews, and incompetent bosses can all increase the likelihood of a panic attack.

The Death of a Loved One

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If a loved one has died recently, or if you’re anticipating their death, anxious and nervous feelings are normal and natural. Don’t be ashamed to talk about your feelings with other people who are grieving – especially counselors, therapists, or mental health workers who’ve been trained to help people cope with loss during difficult times like yours. Remember that grief is a process — it doesn’t mean that grief will last forever or that it will get worse over time. Believe things will be better in time.

A Divorce or Separation

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A divorce or separation is another common trigger for panic attacks. ​ And when you think about it, it makes sense: Your life has been turned upside down by an event that you didn’t want, which naturally leads to a state of extreme distress, heightened emotional reactions, and loss of control. 

Negative Thoughts

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Do you ever feel like you’re biting off more than you can chew? Does the thought of an upcoming project make your heart pound and palms sweat? If so, you’re not alone. Humans are a complex bunch, and despite what we think, our minds are prone to several errors. Many of these errors can be attributed to cognitive distortions, which cause irrational beliefs. Negative thoughts are one of the most common triggers for panic attacks among people who suffer from anxiety disorders.

The Fear of Abandonment

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Not everyone will experience every type of trigger listed here, and not all panic attacks are caused by relationships. However, the fear of abandonment can be a common trigger for many, especially if there is a history of childhood neglect. Panic attacks don’t occur because you’re weak-willed, have low self-esteem, or have some deep character flaw; they happen because your natural, instinctive need to bond was triggered in the presence of someone you thought liked you, too. This reaction does not mean the person will leave you, but it may be an indicator to communicate with your friend, family member, or loved one when these feelings arise. 

The Pressure of Society

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No matter how stable an individual is, if that person is placed in uncomfortably stressful circumstances, anxiety attacks can be triggered. There are several different types of anxiety triggers, but one that applies to a lot of people is the pressure to conform to the standards of society.

Being part of society means following its rules and expectations. Unfortunately, sometimes, people can interpret society’s standards in a way that causes them to have unrealistic expectations of themselves. In some cases, people start distancing themselves from social events out of fear that they won’t be able to do it. But remember, you don’t have to conform to what society says to you; be yourself and do you!

Financial Problems

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Financial problems are the most common triggers of anxiety and panic attacks. However, if you know what to do, you can minimize financial stress and prevent panic attacks. You can talk to a family member or an accountant to help you tremendously with your stress; there will always be a way; don’t stress too much about it; you can do this!

Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (Ptsd)

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Many people think that panic attacks only happen to people dealing with stress. This may be true, but not always so. There can be various other triggers to these attacks, such as stress, trauma, depression, and especially panic disorder. Post-traumatic stress disorder is a common trigger for panic attacks, especially for people who have survived traumatic events like natural disasters or live combat. If you ever experience a panic attack after going through a stressful, emotional situation, you should understand that it’s a normal reaction. Consider talking to your doctor so that you can know what else to help you with your panic attacks. 

Chronic Physical Illness or Pain

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Physical pain can lead to feeling like you are going crazy. Nothing else can trigger a panic attack more than being in chronic pain and believing you are growing worse. There is also no one way to treat these types of panic attacks since everyone’s bodies are different, with different triggers for their panic attacks. Consider talking to a friend or therapist about how you are feeling. Try to do meditation and exercise, too!

The Fear of Losing One’s Job

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The fear of losing one’s job is one of the most common triggers for panic attempts; if you’re anything like me, you’ve had a few panic attacks after being laid off from a job or worrying whether or not you would be soon. The good news is that there is a variety of things that you can do to help calm your anxiety and reduce your panic.

Remember, you’re not alone. No one knows that saying better than people who have been there themselves. Do what works for you, and don’t be afraid to ask for help – but first, know that you are not alone in this fight. You can do this.

Mastering Serenity: 5 Effective Strategies for Coping With Anxiety

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Treatment for anxiety disorders involves taking medication and undergoing therapy to reduce the symptoms of anxiety and the frequency of panic attacks. Therapy is often a good idea for those suffering from anxiety because it can help reduce the severity of associated symptoms and make a person more comfortable with their disorder. In therapy, you will learn how to recognize your fear, relax your body, and determine what is causing your heart to race while discovering why you’re so anxious.

Mastering Serenity: 5 Effective Strategies for Coping With Anxiety

Communicating With Care: 12 Phrases to Avoid With Anxiety Sufferers

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Living with anxiety can be a challenging experience, and the support of friends and family can make a significant difference. However, even well-intentioned words can sometimes do more harm than good. Before diving into the common phrases that should be avoided when talking to someone with anxiety, it’s important to highlight a few positive ways to offer support. Being an active listener, showing empathy, and providing a non-judgmental space where they can express themselves freely are key. Additionally, offering to help find resources or professional support can be beneficial if they are open to it. Above all, the aim should be to create an environment of understanding and safety. With this in mind, let’s explore some of the phrases that are best avoided to maintain a supportive and empathetic approach toward individuals dealing with anxiety.

Communicating With Care: 12 Phrases to Avoid With Anxiety Sufferers