Some people experience very intense, unexpected bursts of intense fear accompanied by physical symptoms that may include chest pain, heart palpitations, accelerated heart rate, sweating, trembling or shaking, sensations of shortness of breath, smothering or choking, feelings of impending doom, feelings of being out of control, dizziness, or abdominal distress. These episodes, known as panic attacks, may occur “out of the blue” and do not seem to be related to any real threat or danger in the environment, or they can happen when you encounter a situation or object that you fear. Even though a panic attack can reach a peak and be over in minutes, those minutes can feel like hours and are so scary that you may do almost anything to avoid it from happening again. You might find that you spend a lot of time worrying about when you will have the next panic attack, and you might try to minimize your chances of having further panic attacks by avoiding places and situations associated with having panic attacks. This fear and avoidance can cause significant problems in many areas of life.
The doctors at Darling Psychology understand how unpredictable, scary, and debilitating panic attacks can be, and we know what steps to take to help you get control of panic and get back to enjoying your life without fear. During the process, we will allow you to focus on your treatment by taking time off work and helping you through the California Short-Term Disability Insurance and Human Resources paperwork process.