Anxiety is a common experience that affects millions of people, regardless of income, age, gender, race or status. Although an anxiety disorder shows itself in a number of ways, anxiety attacks, also known as panic attacks, are one of the most unpleasant symptoms.
If you are coping with anxiety attacks and substance abuse, there are a few things to keep in mind:
- Anxiety attacks are frightening experiences that can affect every part of the body. Symptoms of an anxiety attack include racing heart, sweating, trembling, dizziness, nausea and chest pains.
- When an anxiety attack occurs, people may feel faint or smothered, or they may have odd feelings of unreality. They often feel like they are experiencing a heart or asthma attack and fear they are dying. Some people report an experience of being strangled or drowning.
- It is common and understandable for anxiety sufferers to become fearful of the symptoms of an attack.
- Research indicates that anxiety disorders and substance abuse are strongly linked. People with anxiety disorders are two to three times more likely to develop substance dependence (alcohol addiction or drug addiction) than people without anxiety.