Panic and Anxiety Disorder

How Is Agoraphobia Related to Panic and Anxiety Disorder?

In a small minority of cases, agoraphobia may occur without panic and anxiety disorder. However, it is typically triggered by the onset of panic attacks associated with panic disorder. Approximately one-third of people with panic disorder will develop agoraphobia and the risk is increased if appropriate diagnosis and panic disorder treatment is not begun during the early stages.

Breaking down the term agoraphobia gives us its literal definition. Agora originates in the Greek language and refers to an open space, most typically a marketplace. A phobia is an intensely irrational fear. This meaning suggests that agoraphobia is an intense and abnormal fear of open or public places. But, this definition falls short in explaining the true meaning of this condition.

For the agoraphobic, the fear is not necessarily associated with open spaces. The central feature of agoraphobia is intense fear (panic and anxiety response) of being in certain situations in which escape is difficult or potentially embarrassing, or where help is not readily available. This may include many places that would not meet the definition of open spaces, including many confined spaces. Such situations may include leaving home alone, being home alone, traveling by car, train or bus, being in an elevator, being in a crowd, being in a large store or mall, being on a bridge or standing in a line.

The fear associated with agoraphobia results in behavioral changes in order to avoid feared situations. An individual with agoraphobia may survey settings for escape routes and avoid situations where an exit is not easily available. This leads to avoidant behavior that may include only driving on certain roads, always sitting near the door in meeting or school settings, avoiding crowded places, or avoiding any place where it may be difficult to get to an exit. In extreme cases, the fear may become so consuming that the individual will not leave the house alone or becomes homebound altogether.

Many people leave it too late before seeking panic attacks treatment, so it’s vital you do something about it before it becomes harder to cure.

Panic and Anxiety Disorder.

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Panic And Anxiety Disorder


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