Dr. Hannah Sugarman is a UK trained clinical psychologist, now based in Hong Kong. Dr. Sugarman joins Aaron on this episode to dive into his anxiety and panic attacks — to explore what causes them, what triggers them, and how best to cope, all from a psychological perspective. She shares some of the common models used to understand panic disorder and some of what goes on in the therapy room when someone comes in to seek treatment for anxiety or panic attacks (Hint: It’s not about lying down on the psychologist’s couch and talking about your mother!). Dr. Sugarman also has some recommendations for people who don’t have access to psychological treatment options on self-help methods they can employ to aid their recovery. Tune in to find out more!
[:30] Aaron introduces his guest for this episode — Dr. Hannah Sugarman.
[1:05] Aaron explains a little more about his anxiety and panic attacks, and his experiences with them.
[2:50] Dr. Sugarman explains the history behind anxiety, and how it shows up in the modern world as panic attacks.
[5:16] What is confusing to Aaron is that his panic attacks appear to have no real cause, and no real treatment to deal with them.
[8:18] Dr. Sugarman explains a common model psychologists use to understand panic disorder: the cognizant model.
[9:44] Is the gun already loaded before the trigger goes off? Are there some preexisting conditions that predispose certain individuals to be triggered by certain bodily states or mental events?
[12:46] What is the cycle that keeps the panic attack going?
[15:01] Aaron shares more about how his anxiety has caused him to start thinking and living negatively. Dr. Sugarman breaks down why this happens with several examples.
[19:57] Aaron and Dr. Sugarman discuss mental illness in comparison to physical injury, in terms of recovery.
[21:54] How can people go about dealing with panic attacks when they happen?
[28:07] What are some of Dr. Sugarman's recommendations to aid Aaron's recovery?
[32:46] Dr. Sugarman describes more about what therapy is like during the treatment.
[36:05] The more people withdraw when they experience panic, anxiety or even depression, the more this experience is heightened because of the lack of other distracting factors.
[38:40] Aaron and Dr. Sugarman explore why anger and other negative emotions can sometimes take the place of anxiety, and how to combat that.
[44:45] Self-help can also be a huge help for people who don't have access to psychological treatment options.
Mentioned in This Episode:
Talking Mental on Facebook
Talking Mental on Instagram
Dr. Hannah Sugarman
Dr. Hannah Sugarman on LinkedIn
Picture of cognizant model
Link to list of symptoms associated with anxiety
Websites and books - Self-help resources