Panic Attack Specialist Portland ME

Anyone can suffer an isolated panic attack, especially during times of great stress. But if you experience them frequently—several times a month or regularly over longer periods—then you have what’s called “panic disorder.” Thankfully, in most cases, you can manage both varieties without resorting to long'term drug therapy.

Francine F Blattner, MD
(207) 761-5876
222 Saint John St Ste 118
Portland, ME
Specialties
Psychiatry
Gender
Female
Education
Medical School: Suny At Buffalo Sch Of Med & Biomedical Sci, Buffalo Ny 14214
Graduation Year: 1976

Data Provided by:
Michael Duane Garnett, MD
(207) 772-9586
222 Saint John St Ste 312
Portland, ME
Specialties
Psychiatry
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: St Louis Univ Sch Of Med, St Louis Mo 63104
Graduation Year: 1979

Data Provided by:
Anthony Mc Cann, MD
(207) 775-5131
17 South St
Portland, ME
Specialties
Psychiatry
Gender
Male
Education
Graduation Year: 2007

Data Provided by:
Dr.REINALDO DE LOS HEROS
(207) 780-1600
Ste 1, 583 Forest Avenue
Portland, ME
Gender
M
Speciality
Psychiatrist
General Information
Accepting New Patients: Yes
RateMD Rating
5.0, out of 5 based on 1, reviews.

Data Provided by:
Joji Suzuki, MD
39 Tyng St Apt 1
Portland, ME
Specialties
Psychiatry
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Boston Univ Sch Of Med, Boston Ma 02118
Graduation Year: 2002

Data Provided by:
David Baird Lobozzo, MD
(207) 647-5629
477 Congress St
Portland, ME
Specialties
Psychiatry
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Univ Of Vt Coll Of Med, Burlington Vt 05405
Graduation Year: 1988

Data Provided by:
Joseph Victor Rubin, MD
(207) 772-8634
121 Middle St
Portland, ME
Specialties
Psychiatry
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Univ Of Ca, San Francisco, Sch Of Med, San Francisco Ca 94143
Graduation Year: 1972

Data Provided by:
William Dean Jeanblanc, MD
(207) 871-2281
131 Chadwick St
Portland, ME
Specialties
Psychiatry
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Suny-Hlth Sci Ctr At Syracuse, Coll Of Med, Syracuse Ny 13210
Graduation Year: 1984

Data Provided by:
Daniel Robert Filene, MD
(207) 287-7425
17 Blyth Ct
Portland, ME
Specialties
Psychiatry
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Dartmouth Med, Hanover Nh 03755
Graduation Year: 1997

Data Provided by:
Michael Lewis Johnson, MD
(207) 773-2828
465 Congress St # 7
Portland, ME
Specialties
Psychiatry
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: In Univ Sch Of Med, Indianapolis In 46202
Graduation Year: 1968

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Ask the Doctor—Panic Attacks

Provided by: 

Q. I think I’m having panic attacks, but I don’t want to take antianxiety drugs. I’ve heard bad things about them. Is there anything natural I can do?

A. If you are having a panic attack, you typically experience rapid heart rate, shortness of breath, sweating, trembling, tightness in the throat, dizziness, and nausea. If that sounds like your experience, I can at least assuage your fears a bit: Panic attacks can feel scary—like you’re having a heart attack—but they won’t kill you. In fact, most pass within five to 10 minutes and rarely last longer than 20 to 30 minutes.

Anyone can suffer an isolated panic attack, especially during times of great stress. But if you experience them frequently—several times a month or regularly over longer periods—then you have what’s called “panic disorder.” Thankfully, in most cases, you can manage both varieties without resorting to long-term drug therapy.

Conventional doctors and psychiatrists often prescribe antianxiety drugs called benzodiazepines like Xanax and Klonopin as well as antidepressants like Prozac and Paxil to treat panic attacks. But antidepressants have unpleasant side effects, and both types of drugs, particularly the benzos, may produce severe withdrawal symptoms, including (ironically) extreme anxiety. These drugs should only be used as a short-term treatment or as a last resort—and should always be coupled with an integrative program to address the root physical and psychological causes of panic so you can overcome them for good.

Understanding panic
Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) helps you recognize the patterns of thought and the situations that trigger your fear and panic. CBT trains you to take note of what’s going on around you and what thoughts are running through your mind right before you experience an attack. Once you can recognize these patterns, you can change them. Say you lived through a terrible tornado that destroyed your neighborhood, and now every time a storm approaches, your mind becomes overwhelmed with fear and your thoughts begin to spiral out of control. CBT shows you how to recognize these destructive thought patterns and teaches you to switch to healthier ones (I lived through this before; I’ll be fine again. I know how to protect myself. I’m a strong person). One of the best ways to take control of a panic attack: Control your breathing. When you feel yourself beginning to panic, focus on making each breath slow and deep. When we’re scared and our sympathetic nervous system kicks in to adrenalin-pumping fight-or-flight mode, our breathing becomes shallow and quick. By slowing down the breath, you activate the parasympathetic nervous system, which sends calming signals to the brain.

The mind-body connection
Relaxing the body has a profound effect on the nervous system. You can accomplish this with a number of different relaxation techniques including progressive muscular relaxation (tensing and releasing discrete muscle groups in the body beginnin...

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