What Causes Panic Disorder?

  • Women‍‍`s Corner
  • October 2, 2022

Doctors don’t know exactly what causes panic disorder, but one possibility is that the brains of people who have it may be especially sensitive in responding to fear. There's a link between panic attacks and phobias, like school phobia or claustrophobia. There’s also a theory that panic disorder may come from an oversensitivity to carbon dioxide, which makes your brain think you're suffocating.

A few things can make you more likely to have panic disorder:

Someone in your family has it (though it’s not clear how much of that is because of your genes or the environment you grew up in)

- High levels of stress

- Frequent negative feelings or trouble dealing with negative emotions

Read More: Myths and Facts About Bipolar Disorder

Some believe there are ties between panic attacks and:

- Depression

- Alcohol abuse

- Cigarette smoking

- Suicide risk

- Seasonal affective disorder, a type of depression that happens in winter

Most often, panic attacks come "out of the blue." One may even begin while you're sleeping. Using drugs or alcohol to try to deal with panic disorder can make the symptoms worse. Attacks may come after the use of mind-altering drugs. And some medications can cause panic attacks, including some antidepressants.

Panic disorder may start after:

- A serious illness or accident

- The death of a close friend

- Separation from family

- The birth of a baby

Read More: How Can Treatment Change the Depression Brain?

People with this disorder often also have major depression, although  there is no evidence that one condition causes the other. If you're 40 or older and have panic disorder, you may have depression or another hidden medical condition. Talk to your doctor to find out what's going on.

This article is taken from https://www.webmd.com/

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