Psychological Causes Of Panic Disorder

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One anxiety disorder that can cause trouble sleeping is Panic Disorder. Insomnia is a very common symptom of Panic Disorder. Panic Disorder is an anxiety disorder that usually begins during late adolescence and early adulthood. It is 2 to 3 times more common in females than in males, and in some cultures the anxiety disorder includes fear relating to the supernatural. Some symptoms of Panic Disorder are “recurrent and unexpected attacks of terror” and “concern about future panic attacks” (Sue et al, 2014, p. 87). Some biological causes of Panic Disorder are heritability, fewer GABA receptors in the amygdala and hippocampus and defective serotonin receptors. Some psychological causes are high sensitivity to bodily sensations, attentiveness to physiological changes, observational conditioning, and false cognitions. Some social causes are stressful events or environment during childhood, such as “separation anxiety, family conflicts, school problems, or the loss of a loved one” (p. 103). Asian and Latino/Hispanic adolescents are more likely to have panic attacks. This could because of a difference in the way these cultures connect anxiety and physiological symptoms (Sue et al, 2014, p. 87, 101-103). …show more content…
In a three-month study of 57 people with Panic Disorder, Sheehan et al found that 68% of participants had trouble falling asleep and 77% had trouble staying asleep (Sheehan et al, 1980, p. 53). Sleep disturbances related to Panic Disorder are often treated with SSRI’s, TCA’s, BZD’s, and MAOI’s. Some patients with Panic Disorder experience panic attacks during sleep, or nocturnal panic. It is suggested by some psychologists that nocturnal panic is caused by a fear of letting one’s guard down as happens when falling asleep. Cognitive-behavioral therapy is recommended in addition to medication for those with nocturnal panic (Staner, 2003, p.

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