Self care: Panic attack vs COVID-19Written by SAFE
Is it COVID? I’m panicking!!
During the coronavirus pandemic, panic attacks have become more common. Panic attacks are even more scary now since some of the symptoms — specifically difficulty breathing and tightness or pressure in the chest — are similar to COVID-19 symptoms. These similarities may lead people to immediately worry that they are ill with the virus. Of course, this worry then makes the panic worse.
The US Department of Health and Human Services is reminding people that some symptoms of panic attacks could be mistaken for COVID-19. HHS the below image to help tell the difference.
The single most important difference is that a panic attack will pass within 15 or 20 minutes. COVID-19 symptoms do not. If possible, try to remind yourself that you are probably fine and the scary feelings will pass. Try to distract yourself — get up and move your body, even if that is only to go into the kitchen for a glass of water. Most of the time, the worries will pass.