Normally when men and women suffer from the same disorder, they will experience similar symptoms. However, with panic attacks, the physical symptoms can be extremely different when the sufferer is of a different gender. Panic attack physical symptoms can manifest themselves in different ways for different people, but it has been proven that they can be drastically different when experienced by a man compared to being experienced by a women. Understanding the differences for each gender can help any sufferer navigate through the fearful and irrational feelings.
For men, the panic attacks feel very similar to the symptoms of having a heart attack. A man can experience chest pain or a tightening of the chest, become short of breath and some even claim they have a pounding feeling within the chest. The first thought for many men is that they are having a heart attack, rather than suffering from panic attacks. For women, panic attack physical symptoms can begin with a shortness of breath and hyperventilating. Women also report hot flashes followed by intense chills, as well as tingling in their fingers and toes. This physical feeling leads to feelings of losing control or going crazy.
For both men and women, these physical symptoms listed above can lead confusion, lightheadedness and even an inability to be in touch with reality. Both men and women report that if they are unable to control the panic and anxiety thoughts that brought them into the panic attack that they have difficulty sorting out reality and irrational thoughts, especially in the midst of the panic attack. The panic attack then takes over their complete capacity to think rationally and non-emotionally.
These symptoms, although different between men and women, are gripping and difficult to navigate, if you have never experienced them before. However, once these panic attack physical symptoms have been diagnosed and identified, any sufferer can take these symptoms and turn them around as quickly as they make themselves apparent. For any patient, the ability to identify these symptoms and to identify the feelings and fears that brought on the physical symptoms is the first step to overcoming the current situation and fearful experience.