Note: See right Menu For Inforon About Particular Types Of Panic Attacks
General Panic And Anxiety Attacks
The most common form of panic and anxiety attacks are the general panic attacks you get. You do not have a panic attack only in a particular situation and marked by a phobia such as agorophobia or panic attacks while driving, among others.
Rather they can occur and affect you at any time. (Use the menu on the left to learn about particular phobias)
The DSM-5 lists two separate and distinct types of panic attacks:
Anticipated panic attacks – These panic attacks are anticipated when one is subjected to specific panic triggers. A person who has a fear of enclosed spaces (claustrophobia) may expect to have panic attacks when in an elevator or other closed or stuffy areas. A person who has a fear of flying (aerophobia) may have a panic attack when boarding a plane, at take off, or some time during the flight.
Unanticipated Panic Attacks – These panic attacks occur suddenly without any obvious cause or indication. When an unexpected panic attack occurs, the person can be completely relaxed before symptoms develop.
This type of panic attack does not accompany any conscious triggers, such as having fearful thoughts, feelings of intense dread and anxiety, or uncomfortable physical sensations.
Unexpected attacks also do not occur with external cues, such as specific phobias or being exposed to a frightening event or situation.
Having experienced one unanticipated panic attack is usually a sign that the person can expect to have more of them in the future. Persistent and unexpected panic attacks are the hallmark feature of panic disorder.
People with panic disorder may also have nocturnal panic attacks,which occur when a person is sound asleep, waking them with panic symptoms.