Panic Attacks Can Be Intimidating, Take These Steps To Defeat Them
Were you aware that phobias can induce panic attacks? Remember this the next time that you find it funny that somebody has, what may seem to be an irrational fear of something. Not only do these people have to deal with their phobia, but also the terrible panic attack that ensues. If you find this interesting, read the rest of this article.
Even the prospect of enduring another panic attack can be unnerving. Panic attacks have been known to cause people to avoid places and situations because of their fear of having an attack at inappropriate times. Incorporate some of these insights to strengthen your ability to thwart these sudden attacks.
If someone you know suffer from panic attacks, ask them about the symptoms so you can know when they are having an attack. A sufferer could experience feelings of faintness, numb sensations, shortness of breath, trembling, heart palpitations, hot or cold flashes, sweating, dizziness and nausea. Immediately eliminate the possibility of any serious ongoing medical situation that would require professional assistance before employing any strategy against the panic attack.
Understanding panic attacks
Panic attacks are terrifying because the person experiencing them has the sudden overwhelming fear that they are going to die. The important thing to remember about panic attacks is that you can control them cognitively. Your brain is taking normal everyday stimuli (a shift in the road while driving, for example), and interpreting them in a fearful way. You can course-correct this fearful interpretation by trying to recall what the source of that stimulus could be. This will reduce your fear and your panic should subside somewhat.
Remember when you are having a panic attack, the feelings that you have are normal. They are just being expressed in an exaggerated form. Do not think that you are going to die from them, or they will harm you. Try your best to remain logical about the situation.
To begin a plan against your panic attacks, it is important to get to the root of the condition before trying a treatment or medication. You need to figure out what triggers your attacks and how best you can treat or eliminate them. When you know what the early signs of your panic attacks are, you can know when they’re coming. Panic attacks can be controlled through treatment. Your doctor may be able to help you decide what treatments are best for your anxiety.
If you constantly suffer from panic attacks, cognitive behavioral therapy can be a big help. There are a lot of people who have been helped by these treatments, so it might be worth a try for you also. Look online to find practitioners in your area who specialize in treating anxiety or panic disorders. Make sure to look for one who is not only accredited, but also experienced.
How talking to someone may help
When the stress that precedes a panic attack appears, talk to someone right away. Having someone to comfort you with kind words will make a difference to you. You would be amazed at how much a simple hug can do. Physical contact can be very soothing and calming in times of stress. Keeping your emotions inside and not sharing them is a great way to set off panic attacks, so stop it! Try to find someone who you trust and share with them any problems you’re facing or consider going to a therapist or counselor for help. There’s always someone to talk to!
During a panic attack, there are some things you should avoid doing because they can exacerbate the symptoms. Calling a friend is a good idea but don’t discuss the panic attack, as this will only place your focus on your anxiety. Do not look in a mirror. You may increase the severity of your symptoms if you see the fear reflected on your face. Try not to sit down. This restricts breathing and does nothing to occupy your mind. Try walking around or even doing light exercises.
If you are prone to getting panic attacks, try to surround yourself with the people that love and care for you the most. When you begin to have a panic attack, these people will help to relax you. This can really help to reduce the severity and frequency of panic attack.
Many people who suffer from panic attacks find comfort and reassurance in a support group. These self-help groups allow you to share your fears and concerns with others who can completely empathize with your feelings and help you find ways to effectively deal with the attacks. Joining a support group allows you to help yourself and help others simultaneously.
Panic attacks are not harmful, but your actions may be
The feelings that you are having during your panic attack will not harm you. They may be very unpleasant but try to understand they cannot harm you, only your actions can. If you feel like you must get away and run and do not take that action, then this will help you defeat the feelings. Take control of your body and remember your actions are what hurts you.
Even though your feelings may seem intense, avoid letting a panic attack overwhelm you. Bend yourself to meet the attack instead of trying to stand against it, unyielding. Imagine that the physical feelings you’re having are moving past you instead of through you. The most important strategy to undertake is to control your breathing. Calm yourself down with slow breaths, in contrast to hyperventilating. Shortly, your excitement level will dissipate, and your body will relax.
If you find yourself becoming frightened while having a panic attack, look around and try to rationalize whether there really is some immediate danger to be afraid of. Is anyone there to hurt you? It’s likely that you are actually safe and nothing bad will really happen.
The fear of panic attacks will make you want to flee. Do not let this fear rule you and pay attention to what you are feeling. If you let your fears win or you try to fight the unpleasant moment you will never gain your control back. Allow and accept your feelings and they will pass.
An excellent exercise to try during a panic attack is to move in slow motion. Perform every action with deliberate thoughts and in the minutest detail. Slow down all your movements and try to slow down your breathing as well. Concentrate on what you’re doing to the point that you hear nothing else.
Adopt a positive mental attitude
Turn the things you’re worried about during a panic attack into a joke. “The house being so dusty means no one will rob it.” The lighter you can make your thoughts the faster your panic attack will pass. Start to laugh out loud and you’ll feel totally amazing really quickly!
A great way to help take control back from your panic attacks is to compliment yourself and others around you. You are not what your thoughts and feelings are telling you, so do not judge yourself by them. Think about what you truly are and do the opposite of what your panic is telling you about yourself.
During a panic attack it’s great to concentrate on what is great about yourself. Remember what you’re good at, or things you’ve done for others lately. Maybe you’re a kind person, or you have great empathy. All of the things about you which are amazing are what makes you you, so embrace them!
Think through the worrisome thoughts that go through your head during a panic attack one by one. Consider why you feel that way, whether or not it’s rational, and how you can solve the problem you face. As you start to go through your thoughts, you’ll find that many will disappear, and your attack will come to an end.
Psychological approach to handling panic attack
Using tactics to distract yourself during a panic attack can help you calm down faster. Try counting backwards from 100 as quickly as you can. Work on a complex math problem. Turn on the radio and sing along to a song that you know. Concentrate on eating an apple. Do a crossword puzzle. Anything that requires focus and clear thinking will help you take your mind off your anxiety and channel it into an activity that will help you relax.
Talk to your feelings out loud when you’re having a panic attack. Let them know that you’re the boss and that you want them gone as quickly as possible because you refuse to be a host for their ridiculousness. Tell them that you’ll be here when they’re gone and you’ll always outlast them!
Pretend you feel great when you have a panic attack. Say out loud that whatever is bothering you is just fine. For example, “My heart is NOT fluttering! It’s beating perfectly and smoothly, and I am so thankful for that!” Rotate around your body and truly believe in the words you say, and they’ll come true in short order.
If you are prone to panic attacks, you know that complete avoidance of panic-causing situations is not always possible. Learn out of body techniques to remove yourself from the situation and allow you to view it as if you were watching television. What would you tell yourself to do? How would you provide comfort? Often placing yourself in the role of mentor or guide trying to help someone else deal with panic issues will get you through the worst situations.
Imagine yourself as a boxer and your panic feelings as a monster. Now, beat life out of him until he’s nothing but a lump of goo on the ground.
Useful relaxation techniques
To distract yourself from the panicky feelings that occur during an attack, try progressive relaxation. Tense and release each muscle group from your toes to your head and try to focus on the sensations in your muscles. This prevents you from clenching your muscles and gives you something relaxing to do as you wait for the panicky sensation to subside.
Engaging in deep breathing a few times a day can help keep your body relaxed and free from panic attacks. Start by closing your eyes and breathing through your nose to your stomach on a slow count of four, and then breathe out through your mouth for four. Increase to five, six, and beyond as you can. Next focus on each area of your body that is giving you trouble. Imagine yourself being calm, then relaxed, and finally going back to normal, and soon enough you’ll find it has.
Avoid a brain overload
Do your best to limit the number of stimuli that you are dealing with at any given time. Your brain can only process a certain amount of information and when you try to do multiple tasks or deal with too many situations at once you will create an overload that causes an attack.
You need to be open and honest about your emotions if you want to try to prevent a panic attack. Many people have panic attacks when their emotions become too much for them to handle. Sometimes it helps to talk to someone about these feelings when they start to arise; this can lessen the possible anxiety in a situation.
Let tomorrow take care of itself
Avoid feelings of dread about future events. Worrying that something bad may happen will only make present situations worse. Your anxious feelings can often be attributed to what you think will happen as a result of a given situation. Do not dwell on what might be and focus on the present and making the best outcome for your current issue.
A great way to keep track of your panic attacks is through an emotion journal. Write down how you feel, your physical reactions, how long it’s been since your last attack and how long it lasts. If you ever feel like this panic attack is different and it’s going to be your last, check the journal! I bet it’s not different at all.
Anticipate your panic attack. If you have been suffering for panic attacks, you should have a plan in place for dealing with them when they happen. You don’t want to be caught unawares, so know what you will do before you even start having a panic attack in the first place.
If you have had a panic attack before, it is important not to dwell on the feelings from that attack. While these attacks are admittedly unsettling, thinking about an attack can cause some people to have another one. If you are having anxiety from a panic attack, treat those thoughts the same way you would the attack itself and practice some relaxation techniques like deep breathing.
Don’t worry about being perfect! Is anyone you know perfect? Perfection is the invention of people who want to hold you down, and your mind will grasp onto such an idea and torture you with it. Let perfection go and instead embrace “good enough.” As long as things are good enough, you’ll get by!
Engage in eventful activities to occupy your mind
When you have a panic attack, try to find something to do that you enjoy. For example, some have found it helpful to perform a cleaning task that is repetitive, like vacuuming. Both the sound and the motion might help to relax the body and the mind. It can also provide a feeling of accomplishment when you’re done!
Don’t just listen to music when you’re having a panic attack, get up and dance! Dance is a great way to exercise and get rid of the adrenaline absorbed by your body, ending your attack in a most enjoyable way. If you know that you get to dance when you have an attack you won’t feel so scared about it!
Get outside, enjoy the clean air, and beat your panic attack! Raking leaves or gardening are amazing ways to beat the fears and worries racing through your head and use your pent-up energy for something useful. Look at the job you’ve completed when you’ve finished and be proud of your hard work!
Try to focus on what makes you happy because when you believe in yourself you become what you believe. Over time you will be able to improve your focus on thinking positive thoughts and be able to push the negative and anxious thoughts from your mind like a strongman lifts weight.
Do exercise regularly. This will help to keep your body healthy and your mind balanced. It will burn off adrenaline which can cause an attack.
Working on your mind to control your feelings
Do not complicate the situation by adding more negative feelings and unpleasant thoughts. Try to force your mind to think about all the positive aspects in your life and the things that mean the most to you. Write them down and carry them with you, so that you can read them if your thoughts start racing.
Work through your panic attack by dis-empowering it. Remind yourself over and over again that the attacks have never hurt you and don’t have the ability to do so. Tell yourself that you know what it is and know that it will pass. Remember that it is only sensations you are feeling, that sensations are harmless, and that you have the power to overcome them at will.
When experiencing a panic attack, do not fight the feelings of anxiety. Understand that when you fight against the natural flow of a panic attack you will only make the situation worse. Ride through the feelings and allow them to subside naturally and the attack will end sooner. This can be difficult to do but with practice you will find it easier.
Remember that you have been through it before, and nothing bad happened. Just try relaxing and do not add bad thoughts because this will only make things worse.
Other practical tips
If you feel like you are prone to panic attacks, you should try to avoid too much caffeine and alcohol consumption. Both substances have been shown to cause an increase in the chances of a panic attack occurrence. Control the frequency of your attacks with this simple tip.
Go to sleep and wake up at the same time every day, even on the weekend, you’ll find that you sleep better and end up less stressed out, avoiding panic attacks. A good night’s sleep is an important key in staying healthy, so stick to a routine daily.
Eating multiple small meals a day can help keep panic attacks away. Your body will be sensitive to any sort of disruption, so keeping yourself from feeling hungry will ensure that you’re satisfied and not searching out a meal. This is also a great way to keep your weight at a good level.
If you find your anxiety tends to get you to grip the steering wheel too hard when you drive, periodically squeeze the wheel as hard as you can ten times in a row to get your grip back to a normal pressure. When you get to a stop take your hands right off the wheel and shake them out. This can help avoid a panic attack later.
It is imperative that a child is helped to relax as soon as a panic attack begins so that it will last as short of a period of time as possible. Talking a child through the panic attack is important. You should try to take their focus off the attack itself and focus their attention to something else. Asking questions, playing music, or simply having them look at pictures may help.
In conclusion, you may have not realized that panic attacks can be as bad or worse than people’s phobias. Now, not only do you realize this, but you know a lot more useful information about panic attacks that will help you to better understand yourself, as well as other people.
Using the information in this article should help you defeat your panic attacks. Always remember that negative thoughts and feelings will only exacerbate your panic attacks. This is within your reach. Taking positive steps to get your panic attacks under control is time well spent on getting your life back on an even keel.