Causes of Anxiety Attacks

Causes of anxiety attacks range from mild to severe.

Some of these include:

generalized anxiety disorders,
Post traumatic stress disorder
separation anxiety
social anxiety disorders
obsessive compulsive disorder
phobias

Each type of anxiety applies different criteria for diagnosis.

Specifically, Post traumatic stress disorder is a form of extreme anxiety that can result from suffering a traumatic experience where you may have been in fear for your life or were caused great physical harm. This also can occur if you witnessed a horrific event that caused you to be terrified which produced overwhelming psychological and emotional trauma.

Causes of Anxiety Attacks robbery

The causes of anxiety attacks in regards to post traumatic stress disorder may include events such as witnessing someone’s death, experiencing a violent assault of rape, war (this used to be referred to as ‘shell shock’), serious accident, robbery, experiencing or witnessing childhood or adult physical, emotional, or sexual abuse, earthquakes, hurricanes or other natural disasters such as the tsunami disaster.

Post traumatic stress disorder can be so severe that individuals may seclude themselves from the rest of the world due to tremendous fear and in an attempt to protect themselves from any possible harm. They may not be able to drive a vehicle as a strong result of fear of an accident. Facing the extremes of this disorder they may withdrawal from all family and friends, not leave their home, answer their door and sometimes not even answer the phone.

Causes of Anxiety Attacks afraid of the dark Excessive cases of post traumatic stress disorder may also cause a person to do unusual things such as sleep under the bed rather than on the bed, they may suffer from insomnia or fear the unknown of the dark, when asleep they may suffer from nightmares in reliving the traumatic event, they stay alert and prepared to defend themselves against any violators.


They may keep all curtains and shades closed so that they cannot be seen through windows. They may alienate their mate and be so wrapped up in their fear and plagued by memories of the event that they don't show any form of intimacy or affection.

Causes of Anxiety Attacks fear

The individual’s life is turned upside down and changes dramatically; they can no longer function in the world or enjoy activities they once pursued. Frightening thoughts and memories occur as flashback images in their mind.

These intense fears keep them edgy, nervous and stressed. They tend to avoid any situations or places that remind them of the event and may become detached from their surroundings as depression ensues. Drugs or alcohol may be used as they desperately seek to escape from their reality.

The severity of the trauma, causes of anxiety attacks, and the symptoms that arise, will be some of the variables that help guide the physicians and therapists to determine the extent of treatment for the sufferer of post traumatic stress disorder. Some other criteria that may be taken into consideration is if the symptoms have lasted for more than a month, how it has negatively impacted the individuals functioning socially and occupationally, if they are using any avoidance tactics due to fear, anxiety or flashbacks of the event or if they are having issues with insomnia or nightmares.

Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy and/or medication may be suggested. Along with any prescribed treatment of your physician it is still imperative that you practice relaxation techniques including techniques such as meditation and yoga.

Physical fitness will also play an important role in your recovery. Your willingness to actively participate in all aspects of your treatment will determine if the causes of anxiety attacks will decrease.

Meditation has been found to greatly reduce symptoms of stress and of PTSD. This thoughtful site offers a refreshing and balanced approach to the benefits of using meditation to deal with PTSD symptoms.

If you would rather seek specialists that are in your geographical area just click here and type in your zip code for a list of specialists in your area. This service is provided by ADAA, Anxiety Disorders Association of America.
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Other Related Links

  • Other causes of Stress
  • Your conscious and subconscious thought patterns
  • For more causes of anxiety attacks see Mayo Clinic - Post traumatic Stress Disorder
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