The Link Between Substance Abuse & Panic Attacks

Published on February 28th, 2018

It’s no secret that substance abuse can lead to an increase in anxiety. But exactly what substances can lead to an anxiety increase and even a panic attack? A good rule of thumb is as follows: if a drug increases heart rate, it can also increase the risk of a panic attack. We want to help improve the substance abuse treatment in Minneapolis and bring awareness to the link between substance abuse and anxiety.

What is a Panic Attack?

Panic attacks are intense bouts of fear that can last as long as 20 minutes. Symptoms include chest pain, dizziness, fear of dying, fear of losing control, feelings of detachment, sweating, chills, hot flashes, trembling, shaking, feelings of unreality, an upset stomach, an increased heart rate and feelings of choking.

Out of 97 individuals with panic attacks, 39 percent had abused at least one substance.

Caffeine Abuse

It may sound unexpected, but caffeine is technically a drug. When consumed in heavy amounts via liquid or a pill, caffeine can have a real impact on your heart. According to the National Center for Biotechnology Information, caffeine is linked to an increased number of panic attacks for those predisposed to them.

Alcohol Abuse

A more obvious example of drug abuse is alcohol abuse. Side effects of alcohol abuse include temper tantrums, mood swings, rage, anxiety and an overall increased sense of danger. When feelings alcohol withdrawals, one may experience not only anxiety and panic attacks but also insomnia, delirium tremens, profuse sweating, depression, nightmares and seizures.

Marijuana Abuse

Tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, is the primary content found in marijuana, and it can have serious effects on the user. Marijuana abuse can lead to a lack of motivation, mood swings, anxiety and panic attacks.

Other abused substances that are linked to panic attacks include cocaine, heroin, opioids and hallucinogens. If you think you or a loved one is abusing a substance and needs professional help, we are knowledgeable about substance abuse treatment in Minneapolis. We want to help turn your life around before it’s too late.

Source: DrugRehab.org