They are not the same, although it can be relatively easy to confuse them. Anxiety is a natural thing that everyone experiences at one time or another. But, if it gets out of control, it can lead to attacks that take place in situations of high stress. And panic attacks are not far behind in terms of the possibility of suffering them. In the past 2021, the cases of two famous artists were very famous, that of the singer Miley Cyrus in full concert and that of the Hollywood actress Amanda Seyfried, who confessed during an interview to suffer them. Just some of the many cases that take place daily.
But what is the difference between an anxiety attack and a panic attack? The specialists and the data agree on the increase in consultations regarding these two conditions. One more reason to expand the information on them, since having these indications is a tool that may become necessary at any time to identify them correctly.
What is an anxiety attack and what is a panic attack?
An anxiety attack, also called an anxiety crisis, is an exaggerated response of the body to situations of great stress. What causes an intense feeling of anguish, acceleration of heart rate and breathing, as well as discomfort, which also produces fear in those who suffer from it.
On the other hand, a panic attack occurs when a person is exposed to a strong fear. This becomes a stimulus for the body, which will suddenly begin to trigger physical symptoms, such as nausea, shortness of breath and a rapid pulse.
The difference between an anxiety attack and a panic attack
The symptoms of an anxiety attack and a panic attack are similar, both in terms of the emotional response – anguish, worry, fear of dying – and in their physical manifestation. This may be accompanied, in addition to what is specified above, heart palpitations, chills, tremors, headache, sweating or dizziness, among others.
However, these two disorders have two fundamental differences. The first one has to do with how they are produced. While anxiety tends to develop after a previous accumulation process, which gradually grows until it explodes; with panic attacks this is not the case. These are totally abrupt reactions.
And second, the physical symptoms experienced during a panic attack are generally more intense than those of an anxiety attack. In other words, anxiety can manifest itself at various levels, but in the case of a panic attack, it will usually be severe at first.