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Cognitive Aspects of Panic (Anxiety) Disorder

Most of the time:

Strong belief in vulnerability

The automatic thought is of danger and various ‘what ifs’

Continuous monitoring of self and the world for danger signals


With the onset of rising anxiety leading to panic attacks –

An intense fear of an internal disaster (e.g. heart attack)

An intense fear of an external disaster (e.g. vomiting in public)

Loss of problem solving ability – brain freeze

Vivid images of the anticipated disaster

Commonly, negative flashbacks of past unpleasant events are present

Rising panic and various fears lead to avoidance


Credit: This resource was handed during my dr sessions. It has been transcribed with approval from psychiatrist but remains his intellectual property.