To panic is to become filled with fear and anxiety. Someone in a panic is totally freaking out.

Have you ever heard someone say "Don't panic"? That's easier said than done. People panic when they lose control over themselves because of fear, stress, or danger. A pilot who runs into turbulence and then flees from the cockpit has panicked. A surgeon who makes a mistake might panic for a second, before chilling out and helping the patient. It's hard to do a good job when you panic. Panicking is pretty much the opposite of relaxing.

Definitions of panic
  1. noun
    an overwhelming feeling of fear and anxiety
    synonyms: affright, terror
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    a panic or extreme discomposure
    type of:
    fear, fearfulness, fright
    an emotion experienced in anticipation of some specific pain or danger (usually accompanied by a desire to flee or fight)
  2. noun
    sudden mass fear and anxiety over anticipated events
    panic in the stock market”
    synonyms: scare
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    red scare
    a period of general fear of communists
    type of:
    anxiety, anxiousness
    (psychiatry) a relatively permanent state of worry and nervousness occurring in a variety of mental disorders, usually accompanied by compulsive behavior or attacks of panic
  3. verb
    be overcome by a sudden fear
    “The students panicked when told that final exams were less than a week away”
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    freak, freak out, gross out
    lose one's nerve
    type of:
    dread, fear
    be afraid or scared of; be frightened of
  4. verb
    cause sudden fear in or fill with sudden panic
    “The mere thought of an isolation cell panicked the prisoners”
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    type of:
    terrify, terrorise, terrorize
    fill with terror; frighten greatly
Word Family

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