Panic Attacks and the Heart
Panic Attacks Can Cause Heart Problems
Anxiety attack can lead to serious heart problems ranging from low blood pressure to severe stroke.
Due to the very nature of a panic attack, it is not surprising that anxiety heart problems are among the leading causes of heart attacks or other cardiovascular issues among North Americans today.
Though the cardiovascular system can be strongly affected by panic attack, the other organs of the body are not spared either.
What Can a Panic Attack
Do to the the Heart?
A panic attack could be defined as a sudden strong feeling of fear or nervousness that makes it impossible to think clearly or behave sensibly.
Many people report the feeling of being "frozen by fear," and an anxiety attack definitely resembles that to a large degree.
Heart problems caused by panic attacks have become more and more common!
Some effects of a panic attack are:
- A feeling of coldness
- Uncontrolled trembling
- Unable to feel or react in a normal way
- Irregular and fast heart beat
- Can't breathe
- Rise or drop in blood pressure
- Mitral valve prolapse or MVP
The consequences of the attack on the cardiovascular system are similar to those caused by high stress.
What Happens During a Panic Attack?
Inside the body, there exists a very strong connection between how the heart works and the other systems.
Panic attacks generate a common human response to danger, which affects all the other organs of the body: the “fight or flight” response of the brain.
The "fight or flight" response enables the person to react more efficiently in times of extreme danger.
The heart races, the blood quickens, the eyes function differently, senses are heightened, and other parts of the body begin to react in other ways, such as muscles tightening, etc.
Because of this all the organs need a greater amount of energy just for their usual functions.
All the work necessary to keeping the body going becomes so difficult that is sometimes easier for everything to just stop.
Once again the heart is told to both beat faster and beat slower. To calm the body down, and slow blood flow - but also speed things up, pretty much all at the same time.
So we see that a panic attack affects the whole body - not just how upset a person feels.
This is the reason it is so important to get the right help as soon as possible.