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See What Your Favorite Celebrities Have to Say About Panic Attacks

Statistics have shown that just over 40 million adults in the U.S. experience a panic disorder. But what exactly is this panic attack that is so rampant among U.S. adults? According to Wikipedia, “A panic attack is the abrupt onset of intense fear or discomfort that reaches a peak within minutes and includes at least four of the following symptoms: Palpitations, pounding heart, or accelerated heart rate. Sweating. Trembling or shaking. Sensations of shortness of breath or smothering”. The symptoms illustrated in the definition depict just how dangerous panic attacks can be.

Although they are often seen as idols, celebrities are still only human; their celebrity status doesn’t exclude them from being victims of panic attacks, and these seven celebrities are the first to acknowledge this:

Amanda Seyfried


Actress and singer-songwriter Amanda Seyfried, 31, spoke to Glamour about how she regularly visits a therapist in a bid to help with her panic attacks. Although she claims to have made a lot of progress, she can’t quite get rid of it as, according to her, she still panics occasionally. In her words, “I still do get terribly nervous, and that’s partly due to the fact I think too much and overanalyze things.” She continued, “I’ll start worrying about my parents or my dog, and I’ll picture him opening the window of my apartment and falling out, even though I can’t get that thing open myself.”

John Mayer

Talented Connecticut born singer-songwriter John Mayer disclosed that he was suffering from panic attacks in an interview with Rolling Stone in 2012. He eluded to the fact that these panic attacks were triggered by his terror of spending the rest of his days in a mental institution. Using his exact words, “Growing up, that was a big fear,” with his friend Joe Beleznay adding, “I would get anxiety attacks too, and we would talk each other down. It was heart palpitations, shortness of breath, coldness and shivers, strange stuff, and we’d be like, ‘You’re totally fine. You do not have a heart attack.’ “His mind works at such speed that I think he would sort of second-guess his sanity at times.”

Lena Dunham

Creator and star of the racy television series Girls and partner of the indie pop band Bleachers’ lead singer Jack Antonoff, Lena Dunham is no stranger to anxiety, having been diagnosed with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) as a child. In 2014, she talked to The Guardian about what her panic attack seem like. She said, “I thought, in two and a half years I’ll be 30, then ten years from that I’ll be 40, then ten years from that I’ll be 50,” she recalled of a recent panic attack. “It’s why I don’t sleep at night.” Lena Dunham is and has always been on a low dose of antidepressants to help suppress her anxiety.

Caitlyn Jenner

Keeping up with the Kardashians superstar and the most openly transgender person in the world Caitlyn Jenner (formerly Bruce Jenner) was reported to have told Vanity Fair in March 2015, just right after undergoing a 10-hour facial-feminization surgery, that she experienced a panic attack. She reportedly recalled thinking, “What did I just do? What did I just do to myself?” right after the surgery before a counselor came to assure her that such reactions were “human and temporary.”

Oprah Winfrey


One thing as hard as a mathematics exam is searching for someone who hates this woman, as everyone knows and loves Oprah Winfrey. However, this household name goes through her fair share of difficulties. While filming The Butler in 2013 and engaging in many celebrity interviews, she had a panic attack.

Speaking to Access Hollywood, she disclosed her thoughts during the experience, saying, “In the beginning, it was just sort of speeding and a kind of numbness and going from one thing to the next thing to the next thing,” she continued, “I will tell you when I realized that I thought, ‘All right, if I don’t calm down I’m gonna be in serious trouble.‘ I was in the middle of doing voiceovers, you know? And I remember closing my eyes in between each page because looking at the page and the words at the same time were too much stimulation for my brain.”

Emma Stone

Emma Stone, 28, who starred in the 2010 teen comedy Easy A and is currently the highest-paid actress in the world, revealed how she experienced intense panic attacks before she started acting to The Wall Street Journal in 2015.

Emma Stone explained: “It was really bad, the first time I had a panic attack I was sitting in my friend’s house, and I thought the house was burning down. I called my mom, and she brought me home, and for the next three years, it just would not stop. I would go to the nurse at lunch most days and just wring my hands. I would ask my mom to tell me exactly how the day was going to be, then ask again 30 seconds later. I just needed to know that no one was going to die and nothing was going to change.”

Ellie Goulding


Gorgeous singer Ellie Goulding, 30, disclosed to Metro UK in 2013 the rehabilitation process she went through after suffering from heart attacks.

Speaking of her first attack, Ellie Goulding said “One day after a shoot I was on a train going to a funeral, and my heart was pounding; I thought I was having a heart attack,” she further added, “I was so scared I reached over to this woman and said, ‘I think I’m dying.’ I called a friend to take me to the hospital, where they told me it was just a panic attack. From that day, I kept having them. It was the weirdest time of my life. Sick, horrible things would go through my mind, but I didn’t want to draw attention to myself… It got to the point when I couldn’t even get into the car and go to the studio.”

Panic attacks are a dangerous experience that can happen to any human, poor or rich. How we decide to deal with them is what separates us from one another.

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