When the fight-flight response occurs as a false alarm, it’s natural to believe you are in true danger. Fight -flight sensations can mimic symptoms of serious illness, such as heart attack, stroke, or “going crazy.” They can also arise in safe situations that hold potential but unlikely risks, like riding elevators, flying, or speaking in public. The very thought (cognition) that you are in danger, even if you are safe, can exert strong influence over your emotions. If you believe you are in danger, your fight-flight response will intensify, further reinforcing your catastrophic predictions and leading to greater fear, avoidance and escape.
CBT helps you identify ineffective cognitions and replace them with reasonable, adaptive thoughts. Develop a nurturing, coaching inner voice, to help you stay grounded and cope with strong emotion as it runs its course.
CBT is effective, evidence-based treatment for panic attacks and phobias. Learn more here.