Panic episodes can be frightening, and they can strike unexpectedly. Some may be of immediate assistance, while others may linger. Here are some tips for preventing or managing panic attacks.
Consult a therapist.
People who suffer from panic attacks or panic disorders can benefit from cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) and other types of psychotherapy. CBT seeks to modify the way you think about difficult or frightening events and to help you find new strategies to deal with them when they arise.
CBT can be found for individuals or groups, online or in-person, and the length of treatment varies. Your therapist will expose you to anything that can provoke a panic attack and help you work through it in exposure-based CBT.
Take your meds as prescribed.
Benzodiazepines, such as alprazolam (Xanax), can be used to alleviate panic symptoms.
They won’t assist with an underlying anxiety issue, though, and can swiftly lead to addiction. As a result, doctors only advise using them briefly during a crisis.
Because benzodiazepines are a medication that can’t be found over the counter, you’ll almost certainly require a diagnosis of panic disorder to get them.
A doctor may prescribe antidepressants for long-term usage in specific instances.
While hyperventilation is among the signs of panic attacks that can trigger terror, deep breathing will help to alleviate the panic symptom.
You’re less likely to experience hyperventilation, and it can exacerbate other symptoms — as well as the panic attack itself — if you can control your breathing.
Concentrate on taking deep breaths in and out via your mouth, allowing the air to slowly fill and then leave your chest and belly. Inhale for four counts, hold for a second, then exhale for four counts.
Recognize the signs of a panic attack.
Realizing that it is only temporary, that it will pass, and that you are OK could help you realize that you do not have a heart attack.
Take away the dread of death or impending doom, both of which are signs of panic attacks. This will free you to concentrate on other ways to alleviate your discomfort.
Panic attack triggers can’t always be avoided, but knowing what they are can help you recognize a panic attack for what it is.
Close your eyes
Overwhelming triggers bring on some panic episodes. A panic attack might be exacerbated if you’re in a fast-paced atmosphere with a lot of stimulation.
Close your eyes during a panic episode to limit the sensations. This might help you focus on your breathing by blocking any distracting inputs.
Mindfulness is a good thing to do.
Mindfulness can assist you in becoming more aware of your surroundings. Because panic attacks can produce a sense of detachment or separation from reality, this might help you cope with your panic attack as it approaches or occurs.
Find a focus object
During a panic attack, some people find it beneficial to locate something to focus their entire attention on. Pick one object in plain sight and jot down all you can about it.
Muscle relaxation methods should be used.
Muscle tension is a hallmark of anxiety, and using muscle relaxation methods during an attack can assist reduce tension and inducing calm. Progressive muscle relaxation tries to relax the entire body by releasing tension in one set of muscles at a time.
By regulating your body’s response, you can halt a panic attack in its tracks with muscle relaxation techniques.
Picture your happy place
Stress and anxiety can be reduced with guided visualization techniques. Spending time in nature and imagining nature, according to research, can help alleviate and manage anxiety.
What is the calmest spot you can think of?
What could be better than a sunny beach with gentle flowing waves? May you want to rent a cottage in the mountains?
Imagine yourself there and concentrate as much as possible on the different details. Consider thinking about sinking your toes into the soft sand or inhaling the fresh perfume of pine trees.
Light exercise is recommended.
Regular exercise will keep the body healthy but also improve mental health. According to experts, exercise for 20 minutes three times a week at 60 to 90% of your maximal heart rate helps relieve anxiety.
Stop and take a break if you’re worried, hyperventilating, having trouble breathing, or opt for a more mild activity like walking, swimming, or yoga.
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