Panic? Anxiety? Depression? More People Experiencing Mental Health Challenges

People of all walks of life, from celebrities like Dwayne Johnson or Lady Gaga, to your next-door neighbor, have experienced mental health issues like panic attacks, anxiety, or depression. Treatment is effective and available.

Recommend This Page
Panic? Anxiety? Depression? More People Experiencing Mental Health Challenges
5 Min Read January 25th, 2022 Updated:April 29th, 2022

Fear is an emotion we all encounter occasionally, but when that fear becomes an overwhelming, sudden surge, it could be more than just a typical reaction. If you find yourself grappling with symptoms such as chest pain, heart palpitations, trembling, shortness of breath, sweating, numbness, or a sense of impending doom or loss of control, you're likely experiencing a panic attack.

While panic attacks, anxiety, and clinical depression share some common symptoms, it's important to recognize that they are distinct conditions with unique characteristics. However, one aspect they share is their prevalence; many people have faced one or more of these challenges at various points in their lives. The journey through the complex landscape of mental health can be bewildering, but understanding the subtle differences between these conditions can help individuals seek the right support and treatment to overcome their struggles.

People of all walks of life have experienced panic attacks, anxiety, and even depression. Johnny Depp and his former girlfriend Kate Moss have shared their history of panic attacks. Actress Emma Stone is another celebrity who is not immune from experiencing a panic attack.

Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson

"The Rock" actor and former professional wrestler Dwayne Johnson shared his history of depression going back to age 18. Carson Daly had symptoms of anxiety going back to when he was ten years old. Lady Gaga has battled depression and anxiety for many years. These and other celebrities have openly discussed their battles with depression and anxiety. These public figures have bravely shared their personal experiences, shedding light on the challenges they faced while coping with mental health issues. Their candid accounts remind us that mental health struggles can affect anyone, regardless of their success or fame, and encourage open conversations and awareness around these important topics.

Celebrities opening up about their mental health struggles can be a powerful force for change. Their vulnerability breaks down stigmas, empowering others to seek help and fostering hope for those facing similar challenges. Moreover, their advocacy can drive support for mental health initiatives, creating a more compassionate and understanding society.

Sudden Intense Fear is a Panic Attack

A panic attack is a sudden surge of overwhelming fear, accompanied by various symptoms, despite the absence of any real danger or apparent cause. When someone experiences constant dread of future panic attacks and encounters them more frequently, they may be dealing with panic disorder.

While panic attacks and panic disorders are not typically life-threatening, they can significantly impact one's quality of life and be distressing for both the individual and their loved ones. Panic episodes can strike at any moment—whether you're at a restaurant, at work, or even asleep—and often occur without warning.

Contrasting anxiety, which generally has identifiable triggers, panic attacks arise abruptly and unexpectedly, usually lasting only a few minutes. On the other hand, anxiety is characterized by excessive, irrational fear and worry that persists for extended periods. Those with anxiety fixate on the possibility of something terrible happening and struggle to let go of these distressing feelings.

Anxiety and Depression are Ongoing

Panic attacks and anxiety are different than depression. With depression, the person has a deep feeling of sadness and a general sense of hopelessness. Those who suffer from depression are listless, negative, and sometimes have suicidal thoughts.

According to the Cleveland Clinic, anxiety and depression often occur together, but individuals can also experience them separately. There is some overlap in symptoms, but each condition has its own unique ones as well.

Depression and anxiety are treatable, whether they occur together or separately - Anxiety vs. Depression: Which Do I Have (or Both?) – Cleveland Clinic.

Keep in mind, however, that anxiety and panic attacks are separate conditions, and the treatment can be different - Are Anxiety Attacks and Panic Attacks the Same Thing? – Cleveland Clinic.

More Panic Attacks Since Virus Crisis

There are some signs that more people are experiencing panic attacks as two studies have shown an increase in Google searches for the term "panic attack." However, the Cleveland Clinic says that individuals with anxiety disorders, depression, or other mental illnesses are more prone to panic attacks.

Anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the United States. Reportedly, 40 million adults in the United States have an anxiety disorder. According to Mental Health America, 19.86% of adults experienced a mental illness, equivalent to nearly 50 million Americans. That study was completed just before the COVID-19 virus crisis. An increasing number of people are reporting serious thoughts of suicide.

From August 2020 to December 2020, there was a 13% increase nationwide in anxiety-related symptoms and a 14.8% increase in depression-related symptoms. The COVID-19 virus crisis has had a significant impact on our mental health, according to a study published in the Center for Disease Control and Prevention's weekly journal.

Research shows that anxiety-related symptoms of Americans have decreased as the COVID-19 vaccine has rolled out; however, the ebb and flow of the pandemic can impact our mental health. Some people might experience a decrease in panic attacks as pandemic restrictions are lifted, while others could face ongoing challenges related to the long-term effects of the pandemic, such as job loss, financial stress, or the loss of loved ones. 

Older People are Lonely and Isolated

As individuals age, they may experience various physical and emotional changes that can contribute to increased feelings of anxiety, depression, and even panic attacks. Factors such as declining health, losing loved ones, reduced mobility, or social isolation can exacerbate these mental health issues. 

Moreover, older adults may face unique challenges navigating the health care system and accessing appropriate mental health support. It's essential for seniors, their families, and caregivers to be vigilant about recognizing the signs of anxiety, depression, and panic attacks and to seek professional help when necessary. 

There are effective treatments for all these issues, but individuals should seek treatment, and their families should encourage them to follow through with treatment. 

Older people experience fewer panic attacks, but they suffer from anxiety and depression. While depression is common in older adults, it is not considered normal, and treatment can be effective.

According to the National Institute on Aging, depression can be common with people who have dementia. In fact, dementia can cause similar symptoms as depression. Plus, depression can be an early warning sign of possible dementia. Suicide attempts may also increase in people recently diagnosed with dementia.

The NIA also says that as people get older, they often spend more time alone. Seniors spend more time alone, even in long-term care facilities where the virus infection increases isolation. The social isolation caused by COVID-19 has made this situation worse. 

Loneliness and social isolation are associated with higher rates of depression, and families should look for signs of depression and anxiety with their older loved ones. 

Don't ignore any of these mental health challenges in anyone - including yourself. Seek the help of your doctor and avoid the stigma that mental health problems still create in some people's minds. 

As we get older, life can get more complicated. Our health declines, our bodies break down, and we sometimes need help with daily living activities. Being prepared will make these changes easier to deal with for your family and your finances.

Recommend This Page

About the Author

Linda is a freelance writer interested in retirement planning, health and aging.

LTC News Contributor Linda Kople

Linda Kople

Contributor since October 31st, 2017

Editor's Note

It's crucial for you to be aware of mental health issues such as depression, anxiety, and panic attacks, especially as your loved ones grow older and may become more susceptible to these challenges.

Aging is an inevitable process that brings about changes in our health and physical abilities. As you and your loved one age, your bodies will gradually decline, and cognitive impairments like dementia can emerge. 

As the demand for care increases – whether in-home care, assisted living facilities, or nursing homes – the associated costs can skyrocket. This financial burden can take a toll on both your income and assets, as well as create stress and anxiety for you and your family. These factors often lead to the necessity for long-term health care services.

By recognizing and addressing the mental health challenges that arise during this stage of life, you can better support your loved ones and promote overall well-being. By proactively planning for long-term care expenses and exploring various options, you can alleviate some of the financial strain and help ensure that your older family members receive the care they need without compromising their mental health.

Be prepared by adding an affordable Long-Term Care Insurance policy to your retirement plan. You will have access to tax-free benefits to pay for your choice of quality care options in the setting you desire. Your loved ones will have the time to be family instead of caregivers. 

Most people obtain coverage in their 50s.

Seek Professional Advice

Experts suggest using a qualified Long-Term Care Insurance specialist to help you navigate the many options available to you and your family.

Long-Term Care Insurance rates are regulated, meaning that no insurance agent, agency, or financial advisor can offer you exclusive discounts. However, premiums can vary by more than 100% between insurance companies for the same coverage.


A specialist who collaborates with top companies can tailor coverage to your age, health, family history, and other factors, ensuring you get the best policy at the most competitive price. By working with a specialist, you'll save money and enjoy peace of mind knowing that they are providing well-informed recommendations customized to your unique needs.


A qualified specialist will provide free and accurate quotes from all the top-rated insurance companies in addition to offering professional recommendations. Most people obtain coverage in their 50s.

Planning Resources and Tools Available on LTC NEWS

You can find many tools and resources on LTC NEWS to assist you in your research for a planning solution or help your family find the appropriate care for a loved one at the time of crisis. 

To help you plan for the future costs and burdens of changing health and aging, LTC NEWS has put in place several resources, including:

Find all the resources on LTC NEWS - Resources for Long-Term Care Planning | LTC News.

Share Your Knowledge - Be A Guest Contributor for LTC NEWS

LTC NEWS is open to contributors to share their stories with the world. 

You can write a story or ongoing column for LTC NEWS. You can write about many topics, including aging, caregiving, health, lifestyle, retirement planning, and long-term care, to name a few.

Be sure to write for our core target audience of adults aged 40 and older. Our audience is worldwide; however, our primary target is the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, and other English-speaking nations. 

Improve your website or blog's SEO and gain exposure and traffic at the same time by being a contributor to LTC NEWS. 

You can even promote yourself, your business, and your website or blog. However, it must have editorial content exclusive for LTC NEWS and cannot be just an advertisement. It can include links to other sites, and you can share the article link once published on your website or social media.

Email your story idea or article: - LTC News Contributors | LTC News

Your Marketing and Advertising Partner – LTC NEWS

Use LTC NEWS to drive traffic to your website and help you attract people interested in your products and services. Plus, you can improve your website's SEO so more consumers can find you when they search for your products and services.

There are various marketing options available with LTC NEWS. Traditional advertising, sponsored content articles, strategic alliances, and more are available. 

Learn more about how LTC NEWS can help you market your business, drive traffic, and improve SEO - Advertise With Us | LTC News.

Get Expert Help Filing an LTC Insurance Claim

LTC NEWS provides free assistance with no obligation to help you or a loved one complete the claims process with your Long-Term Care Insurance policy. 

You can also get support in finding quality caregivers and get recommendations for a proper care plan, whether a person has a policy or not. - Filing a Long-Term Care Insurance Claim | LTC News

Find Quality Caregivers and Long-Term Care Facilities

If your parent or loved one needs care now - or soon - you will need to find the appropriate care in the right setting depending on their needs.

Take a moment and read - 

Benefits of Reverse Mortgages 

Today's reverse mortgages for those aged 62 and older could be an ideal resource to fund a Long-Term Care Insurance policy OR even provide money to pay for care if you, or a loved one, already needs help and assistance.  

Some people have much of their savings invested in their homes. With today's reverse mortgages, you can find ways to fund care solutions, care itself, even help with cash flow during your retirement. 

Learn more by asking questions to an expert. Mike Banner, LTC NEWS columnist and host of the TV Show "62 Who Knew" will answer your questions regarding caregiving, aging, health, retirement planning, long-term care, and reverse mortgages. 

Sharing News with LTC NEWS 

Include LTC NEWS in your press release distribution. If your group, organization, business, political committee, etc., have news to share, send it to LTC NEWS. Email -  

Shared Links

LTC NEWS offers a 'helpful links' page so readers looking for additional information can find them easily. You can get a dofollow link to your website on LTC NEWS in exchange for a dofollow link on your site.

Let's work together and help consumers who search for us on the web - Site Request | LTC News.

You can also affordably purchase a dofollow link to your website or blog on LTC NEWS. Just contact the advertising department.

LTC News Trusted & Verified

Work With a Trusted Specialist

Get Accurate Long-Term Care Insurance Quotes

  • Has substantial experience in Long-Term Care Insurance
  • Strong understanding of underwriting, policy design, and claims experience
  • Represents all or most of all the leading insurance companies
man and woman sitting at desk
  • Latest

  • Oldest

  • Homecare

  • Health

  • Government

  • Care Facilities

  • Pets

  • People

  • Lifestyle

  • Insurance

No Results

Step 1 of 4

Find a Specialist

Get Started Today

Trusted & Verified Specialists

Work with a trusted Long-Term Care Insurance Specialist Today

  • Has substantial experience in Long-Term Care Insurance
  • A strong understanding of underwriting, policy design, and claims experience
  • Represents all or most of all the leading insurance companies

LTC News Trusted & Verified

Compare Insurers