Panic Disorder Therapy in Alexandria, VA (Franconia)—Therapists and Counselors

Panic Disorder Therapy in Alexandria, VA (Franconia)—Therapists and Counselors

Greg was working diligently at his desk one moment, and the next, his chest was pounding. He could not breathe. He could not feel his fingers. Greg wondered if this was a heart attack or if he was dying. After several, awful minutes, the sensations subsided. His coworkers called an ambulance, but Greg did not have a heart attack—he had a panic attack. Ever since that day, he has worried that he will have another.

Without clear reasons and without warning, panic attacks can strike. When they disrupt daily life and/or occur frequently, a panic disorder may have developed. After a panic attack, people are often exhausted and drained. Naturally, they may change their routine in the hopes of avoiding another attack, but doing so means they may also miss out on work, friends, and family. Others may attempt to numb the intense feelings with drugs or alcohol, but these can exacerbate panic attacks.

And yet, panic attacks are responsive to psychological treatment. Under a therapist’s guidance and care, many people have learned how to cope with panic attacks and/or treated their root causes. When people are empowered with coping skills and treatment for past traumas, panic attacks often subside if not abate completely.

Treatment for panic disorders is available at Thriveworks Alexandria, VA (Franconia). Our therapists and psychologists can combine various therapeutic techniques to find a treatment plan that is tailored to each client’s needs and symptoms.

Symptoms for a Panic Disorder

Young children and older adults have been diagnosed with panic disorders, but they generally appear when people are in their young adulthood—20s and 30s. Often a period of stress or a particularly stressful situation precedes the first panic attack. Genetics can make a person more susceptible to panic attacks, as can childhood trauma.

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Health, Fifth Edition (DSM-5) gives the following diagnostics to identify panic disorders (DSM-5 300.01 [F41.0]):

  • When people experience multiple panic attacks (at least two) that strike unexpectedly. The panic attack may cause people intense discomfort and anxiety that escalates for several minutes and then subsides. In particular, the attack must involve at least four of these symptoms to be considers a panic attack:
    • Excessive perspiration
    • Palpitations or escalated heart rate
    • Feeling detached from oneself
    • Trembling or shaking
    • Numbness or tingling sensations
    • Difficulty breathing or feeling choked
    • Feeling smothered
    • Chest pain or tightness
    • Dizziness or faintness
    • Fear of death
    • Hot flashes or chills
    • Fear of losing control or being seen as crazy
    • Abdominal pain or nausea
  • In response to a panic attack (or multiple panic attacks), experiencing either or both of the following for at least one month:
    • Severe worry that another panic attack will occur and/or one will face negative health consequences (e.g., a heart attack) because of a panic attack.
    • Adjustments in one’s everyday routine that try to offset the feelings of panic—hoping to reduce or eliminate the attacks.

Calming Panic Attacks

No one should have to miss out on work achievements, family time, or fun with friends because they are worried about having a panic attack. Psychological treatments have proven effective for many people who fight panic attacks. Various kinds of treatments can be integrated for a tailored treatment plan that meets each person’s unique needs. Such treatments may include:

  • Exposure therapy: This therapy can teach and build people’s coping skills. Under the supervision of a skilled therapist and within a safe environment, people can be exposed to the sensations of a panic attack in order to practice controlled responses. As people learn how to handle the attacks, they may diminish or cease.
  • Cognitive behavioral therapy: This therapy explores and addresses any root causes for the panic attacks. People may need to adjust negative thought processes or work through childhood trauma. As the causes of the attacks are resolved, they often lessen.
  • Medication: Certain medicines may reduce panic attack symptoms for a period of time that allows cognitive behavior therapy or exposure therapy to be more effective. Medication is most effective when combined with other therapies.

Scheduling Therapy for Panic Disorders at Thriveworks Alexandria

Did any of the diagnostics for panic attacks sound familiar to you? Have you experienced any of those terrible symptoms? Help is available. Thriveworks Alexandria, VA (Franconia) offers therapy for panic disorders, and our therapists as well as our psychologists are dedicated to finding the right treatment for each client.

If you are ready to live life without the fear of panic attacks, here are some things that you may want to know about scheduling therapy at our office…

  1. New clients often see their counselor the day following their first call.
  2. When you dial our number, a person—not a voicemail—will answer and help you.
  3. Weekend and evening appointments are available.
  4. We accept many forms of insurance.

We want everybody to receive the therapy they need, and our counselors are ready to help. Call today.

Thriveworks Counseling Alexandria

People Love Our Providers!

Overall Rating: 5★★★★★ based on 17 5 1 17 reviews. See all reviews
Thriveworks Counseling Alexandria

Great Experience

★★★★★
My daughter's dad and I had a few sessions with Dee Jacobi-Edwards and she was great. She was very neutral and honest with both of us when it came to our disagreements and downfalls. She was also extremely patient with us throughout our sessions. I would absolutely recommend Dee.
Thriveworks Counseling Alexandria

A truly dedicated professional

★★★★★
I have been battling anxiety and depression for years, and Mary Alice Fields has helped me finally find some relief. She is dedicated to helping her clients live their best possible life, and she has helped me gain some peace in my life. I know she has help countless others, and I would highly recommend her to anyone who suffers from depression or anxiety issues.
Thriveworks Counseling Alexandria

Excellent Experience

★★★★★
Mary Alice was excellent to work with. I highly recommend!
Thriveworks Counseling Alexandria

Mary Alice Fields

★★★★★
Excellent and convenient help when you need it.
Thriveworks Counseling Alexandria

Great place

★★★★★
Not only does Mary Alice perform her duties in an exemplary manner following all protocols, she does so with empathy and caring.
Thriveworks Counseling Alexandria

MaryAlice Fields

★★★★★
MaryAlice is a talented counselor who helped me tremendously.
Thriveworks Counseling Alexandria

patient parent

★★★★★
Lolita is a very thoughtful therapist. She also has a good understanding of children as she worked with my son at the ages of 15 & 16. She was an advocate for him, and she was eager to work with him in goal-setting, which my husband and I appreciate very much. We may continue to seek our her assistance in the future should our needs change. Thank you for all of your help.
Thriveworks Counseling Alexandria

Can’t thank you enough

★★★★★
I was skeptical at first to open up to a complete stranger and express my problems and thoughts but Gelila made me feel completely comfortable within the first couple of sessions. She is very kind, a good listener, and extremely helpful. I have been talking to her for a couple of months and I feel instantly relieved of stress after our sessions. I can’t thank her enough for helping me out through tough times.
Thriveworks Counseling Alexandria

Rebecca Fry is amazing

★★★★★
Rebecca has been my therapist for almost a decade and I can not recommend her enough. She is thoughtful and caring, while also great at challenging and giving direct recommendations on how to deal with issues. She even stayed with me after I moved out of the area and worked to figure out a remote option. She has worked with me through many issues and remained a valuable resource I can rely on.
Thriveworks Counseling Alexandria

Rebecca is incredible!

★★★★★
I can't speak highly enough of Rebecca Fry - she is compassionate, patient, attentive, and encouraging. She is celebratory of growth and honest in her feedback without ever being critical or judgmental. For someone who was fearful of entering therapy, she embraced me with warmth and understanding. She has helped me tremendously by equipping me with practical coping mechanisms that are manageable and realistic but challenge unhealthy habits when necessary. On top of her professionalism - Rebecca is so easy to relate to and never makes me feel like I have anything to be ashamed of. She cares deeply for her patients and wants to help them lead healthier lives. She is an absolute treasure and I can't recommend her highly enough!!
Thriveworks Counseling Alexandria

Highly Recommend Kayla Barnoski

★★★★★
I would highly recommend Kayla Barnoski as a therapist. She is caring and knowledgeable. She listens and works with you to find a solution that works for your individual situation. She has experience with many age groups and is a hard worker. You will not be disappointed.
Thriveworks Counseling Alexandria

Only one session so far, but it’s going well.

★★★★★
Only one session so far, but it’s going well.
Thriveworks Counseling Alexandria

I love Lisa Cornelius!

★★★★★
I love my sessions with Lisa Cornelius! She helps me to work through issues and is just a fantastic listener!
Thriveworks Counseling Alexandria

Lisa is great!

★★★★★
Lisa is great! Easy to relate to and very helpful. I appreciate her flexibility as well.
Thriveworks Counseling Alexandria

Loving my therapist!

★★★★★
Loving my therapist!
Thriveworks Counseling Alexandria

Great Counselor – Lisa Cornelius

★★★★★
I'm so glad I found Lisa. She's an awesome therapist, and I really enjoy my visits with her!
Thriveworks Counseling Alexandria

So far so good!!!!

★★★★★
So far so good!!!!
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Thriveworks Counseling

Schedule your first appointment with a Thriveworks Counselor or Life Coach!

  • 6076 Franconia Rd Suite D,
    Alexandria, VA 22310

  • Mon-Fri:7AM-12AM
    Saturday:7AM-6PM
    Sunday:8AM-5PM

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