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How Can You Deal with a Panic Attack?

Do you ever get so nervous that you get a panic attack? Or Do you ever get panicked even without any trigger around you? Panic disorders make an individual feel overwhelmed with a feeling of fear, terror, or apprehension. It makes an individual anxious as well as terrified. An individual can experience panic attacks any time at any place that they are in. If you might be suffering from panic attacks, you can even feel that you are experiencing a heart attack. If you have experienced a single or two episodes of a panic attack over your lifetime, it is considered normal. In case you are experiencing them regularly, you might develop panic disorder. Hence, it is essential to treat and understand the importance of coping with panic attacks as they can harm our lifestyles.

Generally, each panic attack lasts from five to twenty minutes. Symptoms of Panic attack differ from person to person. A few common symptoms of a Panic attack are-

  • Intense anxiety

  • Excessive sweating and trembling

  • A feeling of detachment or choking

  • Hyperventilation or shortness of breath

  • Rapid heart rate

  • Chest pain

  • Nausea

  • Experiencing chills

  • Fear of dying

  • Feeling of insanity

If you have experienced the above symptoms, you need to understand the causes and ways to cope with Panic attacks. The exact cause of Panic attacks is still unknown. Although, various factors can cause as well as contribute to the development of the disorder. A few common elements are-

  • Excessive stress

  • History of abuse, especially in the childhood

  • Genes

  • Traumas

  • Excessive consumption of nicotine

An individual can prevent panic attacks by taking specific healthy steps in their life. Various research has shown how more than 50% of the individuals who experience mild symptoms of a panic attack can quickly recover, and their daily lives aren’t affected. A few of those steps are-

  • Having a healthy lifestyle

  • Doing exercise

  • Mediation

  • Avoiding caffeine, cannabis, alcohol, and nicotine

  • Practising mindfulness

  • Seeking regular treatment

  • Eating nutritious vegetables and fruits

Here are some techniques that can help you cope with a panic attack –

  • Start visualizing: Whenever you start experiencing symptoms of a panic attack, start thinking of any particular thing or an experience. This thought process can make your mind feel relaxed and calm. The visualization helps in fighting the feelings of distress and fear. For example, an individual can think about the sunset at a beach.

  • Deep breathing- Deep breathing helps in reducing blood pressure as well as decreases stress. It increases the energy in the body and makes our minds calm. Not only this, an individual who learns deep breathing can easily control their panic attacks. Tip- Always remember to focus on your breath.

  • Distract yourself- Whenever you start experiencing intense feelings of fear or start getting overwhelmed, try to distract yourself for some time from your surroundings. An individual gets a better headspace when they change their environment. For example, you can talk over a call to the person whom you feel most safe with, or you can try counting from ten to one.

  • Recite positive affirmations/mantras- Saying Positive affirmations as I can get through this, I am strong, and God has given me the power to get through. Not only this distracts your mind, but it helps in reducing fear. It even makes an individual feel optimistic and full of positive energy.

  • Progressive Relaxation Technique- As mentioned above, one of the symptoms of a panic attack is your body muscles getting tensed up. It happens as your body is entering the state to either go into flight mode or fight. If you practice progressive muscle relaxation, your mind gets calm as your body helps the mind releasing all the tension.

  • Medication– If you are suffering from panic attacks, it can turn into a panic disorder that negatively affects your mind and brain. Psychiatrists often prescribe anti-anxiety and anti-depressants. With regular medication and by doing coping activities, an individual can cope with panic attacks.

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