Panic attacks are sudden, highly unpleasant surges of anxiety. If you are plagued by panic attacks, visit experienced psychologist Dr. LaBarbera at his office in Rockville Centre, New York, or via telehealth services from Rockville Centre and Union City, New Jersey. He specializes in diagnosing and treating individuals with panic attacks using behavioral and cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). Call Damon G. LaBarbera, PhD, or schedule an appointment online.
Panic attacks are highly distressing spikes of anxiety. Some attacks seem “out of the blue ” with no identifiable cause or seem to occur in particular situations, such as while driving, in a public place, or on public transportation.
After a panic attack, some people develop anticipatory anxiety and worry about having another attack, restricting their activities. They may avoid certain places, stay at home, and self-monitor for signs of another attack.
Panic attacks can include physical symptoms such as heart palpitations or difficulty breathing, so a person mistakenly fears that they are having a heart attack.
Other symptoms may include:
Psychotherapy has proved effective in diminishing the intensity and frequency of panic attacks and reducing anticipatory fear of having another attack.
Panic attacks may exist alone or as part of an anxiety disorder. They may occur at times of higher stress or with people with generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), phobias, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), or a history of trauma.
Attacks may be triggered by substances, particularly stimulants as common as caffeine, or by a terrifying situation such as a natural disaster or combat. A genetic predisposition to panic attacks is likely.
Panic attacks can occur alone or in combination with other disorders. Dr. LaBarbera can recognize the components of your anxiety attack, whether there are particular triggers if you have any specific variant of a panic attack, whether previously diagnosed medical conditions that might have triggered the attack and the best treatment.
Psychological testing also can provide background to target treatment most efficiently and economically.
Further, Dr. LaBarbera can help you manage work stress, relationship difficulties, grief, and physical factors that increase your vulnerability to panic attacks.
Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) and behavior therapy are evidenced-based treatments for panic attacks and help you control your anxiety rather than allow it to control you
Call Damon G. LaBarbera, PhD, today or book an appointment online for expert panic attack treatment.