If one is asked his / her greatest fear in life, he / she will probably give an answer relating to death or experience that may lead to death. It can be a chronic illness, an accident or murder. But there is a condition called panic attack which is described to be the most miserable situation a person can ever be in.

Characterized by a sudden feeling of extreme anxiety and fear, a panic attack often comes with shortness or heavy breathing, irregular heart palpitations, stomach discomfort, chest pain, lightheadedness, trembling, in other words, it is probably the most uncomfortable and miserable situation one can ever be in. This event triggers a fight or flight response. This response triggers the release hormones particularly epinephrine responsible for adrenaline, the body then reacts by escaping what is supposedly seen as harmful, hence the name, fight or flight.

The attack is usually attached to a condition agoraphobia which is the fear of being trapped in an inescapable situation. And this is why people experiencing the attack feel suffocated and trapped so the urge to escape. The following are believed to be the most common causes and triggers of an attack:

• Family history. The condition can be hereditary. Environmental factors can also cause one to adapt the disorder. If a child grows up with their parents being overly protective and constrained, it causes trauma. And the stress level can build up that will eventually lead to an attack.

• Biological causes. Some people have an obsessive compulsive syndrome which is possible one cause. Other factors that can trigger the disorder are: Vitamin B deficiency and tapeworm infection.

• Fear of or phobia can also directly result into an attack.

• Traumatic life experience such as the loss of a loved one can also trigger the disorder. Use of stimulants such as alcohol, nicotine and marijuana are also major contributors.

• Passivity. Some studies have proven that silence or a passive and unassertive interaction with others plays a big role. It is the suppressed feeling that can cause emotional distress which in time may just drive one to explode.

• Medication side effect may also lead to an attack. One medication that is believed to cause an attack as a side effect is Ritalin.

Simple things such as screaming at the top of the lungs can be helpful to release negative energy from the body. Anxiety and stress if not deal with can lead to a panic attack and that should be taken seriously.