A panic attack is the onset of a sudden period of extreme anxiety. It may be a single episode or a recurring situation depending upon the actual cause of the panic attack.
A panic attack puts the person in a psychological state that is colloquially described as the "fight or flight" state; in an effort to deal with the agitated state that the person is in, the response will be to either stick to their guns and fight with what they perceive to be the cause of the panic attack, or flee from it.
Finding the cause of a panic attack can sometimes be difficult, given the fact that there are many reasons that can contribute to one. And although a panic attack is largely a psychological response to a perceived threat, there are many physical causes for one. People who have undergone a panic attack describe it as quite an intense experience that affects both the mind and the body, but in different severity from one person to another.
A common reaction to a first time panic attack is to call for emergency medical services because many of the symptoms of a panic attack can feel like a cardiac problem or a nervous breakdown. It is also quite possible that during panic attacks a personís cognitive abilities to make decisions are compromised.
In this case, it really is not a bad idea to ask for help because people experiencing panic attacks will be at a point that they have no idea what is happening to them.
In general, while a person who is having a panic attack may feel like the body is breaking down or failing, the truth is that the subconscious is merely trying to get a message to the conscious part of the brain that something is wrong and to act on it so that the person survives.
Addressing the problems of panic attack begins with the tracing of the root cause of the panic attack. Some attacks are simple and linear, such as those simply arising from a personís habits or lifestyle. There are panic attacks that are more complex because of the variety of inter-related factors that cause the episode.
There are also people who are just more prone to panic attacks than others from the beginning, or could be placed in a position that such an attack can be easily triggered repeatedly.