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Sweating

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Whilst the various panic attack symptoms differ from person to person, increased perspiration is one of the symptoms nearly everyone encounters during an attack.

Sweating is the body’s mechanism for reducing its temperature. As it heats up, the body releases fluid through sweat glands and as this sweat evaporates it takes heat with it, reducing its temperature.

As part of the panic attack symptoms, the release of epinephrine (adrenaline) associated with the fight-or-flight response prepares the body in a rapid reaction to danger. Part and parcel of this subconscious expectation is that a period of intense activity which will cause heat to be generated from the muscles is to follow. In order to get rid of this anticipated heat, the control centre for sweating, which is located in a region of the brain known as the ‘anterior regions of the hypothalamus,’ kicks in and the body starts sweating.

As a general rule, panic attack or anxiety induced sweating is usually most prevalent in the hands, feet and face where a reddening of the skin (blushing) occurs. People often call this symptom ‘hot flushes’ rather than sweating, because of the localised nature of this response in many individuals.

Whilst sweating is uncomfortable, it is one of the minor challenges when compared to the other panic attack symptoms and as such is often of limited concern to anyone experiencing a panic attack.


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