Freespira blog

A reporter has a panic attack while on live TV. Watch how it changed his life.

Shortly after seven on a sunny spring morning in 2004, I freaked out in front of five million people.

I was filling in on “Good Morning America,” anchoring the news updates at the top of each hour. I had done this job plenty of times before, so I had no reason to foresee what would happen shortly after the co-hosts, Diane Sawyer and Charlie Gibson, tossed it over to me for my brief newscast: I was overtaken by a massive, irresistible blast of fear. It felt like the world was ending. My heart was thumping. I was gasping for air. I had pretty much lost the ability to speak. And all of it was compounded by the knowledge that my freak-out was being broadcast live on national television. Halfway through the six stories I was supposed to read, I simply bailed, squeaking out a “Back to you.”

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Take a simple self screening test to see if you’re experiencing #panicdisorder

If you suspect that you might suffer from panic disorder, answer the questions below, print out the results and share them with your health care professional.

To locate a specialist who treats panic disorder, visit the ADAA Find a Therapist.

This is a screening measure to help you determine whether you might have panic disorder that needs professional attention. This screening tool is not designed to make a diagnosis of panic disorder but to be shared with your primary care physician or mental health professional to inform further conversations about diagnosis and treatment.

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Learn more about the connection between diabetes and anxiety.

While diabetes is typically a manageable disease, it can create added stress. People with diabetes may have concerns related to regularly counting carbohydrates, measuring insulin levels, and thinking about long-term health. However, for some people with diabetes, those concerns become more intense and result in anxiety.

Read on to find out more about the connection between diabetes and anxiety and what you can do to prevent and treat your symptoms.

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“I Tried 47 Different Things To Help My Anxiety – This Is What Stuck”

I’ve grappled with anxiety ever since my first panic attack six years ago, during an otherwise inconsequential day in June. Driving from my house to the grocery store, I felt my tongue dry up, then my mouth. It happened slowly, as if I were swallowing sand. My throat dried out too. A guttural sense of fear boiled up from my stomach and the two feelings collided in my chest, sending adrenaline coursing through my body. Gasping for air I slammed on the brakes, hands scrabbling for the door, and flung myself out.

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“I Suffer Panic Attacks at the Gym – Here’s What Helps Me Get Past the Anxiety”

Research shows that exercise is one of the best remedies for anxiety. It’s actually been found to be nearly as effective as Prozac at calming sensory nervous systems, producing feel-good hormones, lowering resting heart rate, increasing confidence, and decreasing sensitivity to anxiety symptoms. But cruelly, working out can also be a major trigger. Shallow breathing, a racing pulse, chest pressure, sweating, even slight nausea—these are all natural consequences of exertion; and they’re also symptoms of panic attacks. For me and the 3.3 million Americans with panic disorder, the sensations of exercise can morph seamlessly into full-fledged terror.

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A mental health advocate shares her story of heartbreak, hard work, and recovery from panic

Before diving into my story of living with a mental illness, I first want to say something to you. If you are reading this, you are likely also living with the ebb and flow of mental illness. You may have a front row seat to the hard days, hopeless nights and the unique challenges that lie between. And, if you’re like me, you may feel some guilt for always struggling, fighting, or working to improve their mental health.

The following is for you. I am sharing my story because I’ve been there and I want to help. My hope is that what I’ve learned from where my mental health has taken me—and the work I did to get through it—may help you.

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Why do anxiety and high blood pressure go hand-in-hand?

As a psychologist who trains therapists around the country in new ways to combat anxiety, I have become interested in the relationship between anxiety and high blood pressure.

Which causes which? And can treatments for one help with the other? Here’s the latest that I’ve found in my search for answers.

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If you suffer from agoraphobia, developing an hour by hour plan might help you manage your anxiety. Read this article to learn how and why this approach works.

Agoraphobia narrows your world, literally and figuratively. People with agoraphobia avoid certain situations or places that may cause them to panic or feel trapped. This may include standing in line, driving on a bridge, being in open or enclosed spaces (like the movie theater), using public transportation or being outside the house alone.

There are gradients of agoraphobia. For some people the fear of being outside their home is so severe they become completely housebound. Others do venture outside but only to certain places they have to go, such as work. This still becomes a miserable experience, producing sweaty palms, racing heart rates, shallow breathing, chest pains and other symptoms of panic.

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Did you know that there is a connection between migraines and panic? Read this article to learn more.

Physical and mental health disorders, including depression and anxiety, often afflict migraineurs, with current research indicating that panic disorder (PD) is the anxiety disorder most often associated with migraine.

In a review article in the January issue of the journal Headache, Todd Smitherman, PhD, FAHS, from the University of Mississippi, and colleagues explored PD, migraine and the connection between the two to better understand assessment and treatment of affected patients.

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From time to time, Palo Alto Health Sciences (Freespira) will share articles or blog posts from guest authors. Some of the information presented may not be consistent with the science-based and clinically-proven method behind Freespira. In such cases, we share the article or blog post for general informational purposes only, without any endorsement or recommendation.