A panic attack is an exaggeration of your body’s normal response to fear, stress or excitement. It is the rapid build-up of overwhelming physical sensations, such as:
• a pounding heartbeat
• feeling faint
• nausea (feeling sick)
• chest pains
• feeling unable to breathe
• shaky limbs, or feeling like your legs are turning to jelly
• feeling like you’re not connected to your body
During a panic attack you might feel very afraid that:
• you’re losing control
• you’re going to faint
• you’re having a heart attack
• you’re going to die
How long do panic attacks last for?
Most panic attacks last for between 5 and 20 minutes. They can come on very quickly, and your symptoms will usually peak within 10 minutes.
Sometimes you might experience symptoms of a panic attack which last for up to an hour. If this happens you are probably experiencing one attack after another, or a high level of anxiety after the initial panic attack