Panic Attacks (Panic Disorder)

The Theorem: A Breakthrough Discovery in Panic!

A man late at night is sitting on the side of the bed in the emergency room. He has got to stop this, he must quit this behavior. He is a strong man, a man who can conquer mountains and corporations; yet here he sits like a scared child waiting for the doctor to give him the diagnosis. It is the diagnosis that he is sure he is going to hear. Yes, it is another panic attack, just like the one he had last month when he was sure he was dying. This nasty little disorder wastes perhaps more of the medical resources than all others; makes a strong man feel impotent and in the worst cases makes him question his own sanity. Imagine if that man sitting on the bed knew exactly why he was there, and why he was convinced he was dying. Indeed the outcome might be different as he could be well on his way to recovery, and perhaps more importantly on the path to recovering some of his self-esteem.

The first step to disarm one of these panic attacks; to gain a peace of mind back, is to understand that they happened to us all before. Back then, at another time and place they were not panic attacks at all though. They were instead a respectable foe to the developing fetus.

A recurrent theme throughout the Theorem is how Nature takes no chances with the human fetus being delivered safely outside of the womb. You may get tired of hearing it even, but it is just that important. With Nature's favored species nothing is left to chance. Labor can be exhaustive and dangerous to the mother, but especially deadly to the fetus. There are simply so many things that can go wrong, and nine months would be lost forever. So she implements a fetal conditioning model; as a part of this model, she instigates brief and sporadic periods of reduced assisted respiration to strengthen the fetal lungs. It is a nice way to say that the fetus realizes it is essentially choking to death. Now this is not the space to develop the full theory, but ultimately the fetus misunderstands the entire experience. As the pregnancy matures and the fetus grows so will its misinterpretation of this event. With most of its memory blocked, it essentially cannot learn. The fetus makes broad connections however, one is that by kicking and punching out, it realizes a return to assisted breathing or at least a reduction in the pain associated with it. As the memory strengthens and the pregnancy endures, the misinterpretation only deepens for the fetus as it believes it actually stopping this horrific event for itself and its host; its mother. This is the very origin of our concept of death; hazy, nonspecific and obviously incorrect.

When the fetus leaves the womb, the memory of these events are encoded in deep lying neurons. After birth most of these neurons are eliminated, many are reprogramed and in the worst case scenario some are reinforced. There they will lay dormant for many years in our subconscious; being reviewed nightly during our deepest sleep, thereby forever mildly influencing our conscious thoughts.

Later in life with neural maturity these neurons will rise again, in certain cases, with a prolonged dominance pattern and consume our conscious thoughts. When this occurs, this fear of death will arise; hazy, nonspecific and incorrect. Of course the victim of the panic attack has no way of knowing any of this. To them the fear is real, a tape is rolling constantly that is telling them they can’t breathe and are dying. This often in spite of what medical evidence suggests.

Don’t expect to gain absolute enlightenment in regards to panic disorder here, as key pieces are missing. For that you must read and understand the entire behavioral and developmental model.

While The Theorem is certainly not a self-help book, panic disorder is one area that it has been utilized as such by its readers. In fact what little mail we do get here, typically comes in the form of a thank you from those who realized the debilitating effects of panic disorder. Makes sense, because it is scary stuff. While certainly not recommended as a substitute for medication or psychological counselling, anything we can do to help on a wholesale level to restore the dignity of mankind is good with us! An absolute must read for those who have ever experienced a panic attack, is treating panic disorder, or is close to someone afflicted!