Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Panic Disorder: Q & A

Q: When does panic disorder start and how long does it last?
A: It usually starts when people are young adults, around 18 to 24 years old. Sometimes it starts when a person is under a lot of stress, for example after the death of a loved one or after having a baby. Anyone can have panic disorder, but more women than men have the illness. It sometimes runs in families. Panic disorder can last for a few months or for many years.

Q: How many people suffer from apnic disorder?
A: An estimate of 6 million Americans suffer from panic disorder.

Q: What can you do about your panic disorder?
A: Talk to your doctor about your fear and panic attacks.Tell your doctor if the panic attacks keep you from doing everyday things and living your life. Ask your doctor for a checkup to make sure you don’t have some other illness. Ask your doctor if he or she has helped other people with panic disorder. Special training is needed to help doctors treat people with panic disorder. If your doctor doesn’t have special training, ask for the name of a doctor or counselor who does.

Q: How can you get more information?
A: Call 1-866-615-6464 to have free information mailed to you.

Q: What can a doctor or counselor do to help you?
A: The doctor may give you medicine. Medicine usually helps people with panic disorder feel better after a few weeks. Talking to a specially trained doctor or counselor who can teach you ways to cope with your panic attacks helps many people with panic disorder. This is called “therapy.” Therapy will help you feel less afraid and anxious.