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Tips For Dealing With Panic Attacks

Panic attacks can be frightening for those who are enduring them. Fear of dying or suffocating can overtake a person experiencing a panic attack very rapidly. Some people report that their hearts begin to beat quicker than normal and they have a difficult time breathing. There are those people who feel they are going crazy and they’ll seek to remove themselves from their current situation. Surprisingly, about 5% of the population will experience one or more panic attacks during their lifetime.

Despite the fact that it is very difficult to think clearly when you are in the throes of a panic attack, there are some things to remember to help you get through it more quickly.

Here are some tips for getting through a panic attack:

Log your symptoms so you can be aware of what might be triggering the episode. Just knowing the symptoms will alleviate some anxiety because you won’t be afraid it is a heart attack or that you are going crazy.

Even though your symptoms are frightening while you are experiencing them, tell yourself you aren’t in danger and that nothing bad is going to happen to you. Tell yourself that you know this too will pass. During times you aren’t having a panic attack, practice breathing techniques to help you calm down. Try to practice it a few times per day. Then, when you are experiencing a panic attack, it will become automatic to breath slowly and purposefully.

Distract yourself by snapping a rubber band on your wrist or by engaging in simple tasks like counting backwards or saying the alphabet slowly.

Activities like cleaning out a closet, scrubbing the tub, washing the windows or talking a walk can help your feelings of anxiety subside. These tasks will also distract you and eventually you’ll calm down. You’ll also accomplish something during your attack.

Compose and then post a telephone support list. These are people you trust and ones who have agreed ahead of time that you can call them while you are experiencing a panic attack. Family members, friends, and even a therapist would be good names to include. Carry a copy of this same list in your purse as well. Include the phone number of your local crisis center at the top of the list in case none of the others listed can be reached.

During an attack, try to replace thoughts of scary and depressing things with positive thoughts. Having a list of the positives in your life with you at all times is a good idea. Pull out the list and repeat those positive ideas to yourself while breathing slowly.

Face your fear if possible. Try not to run away from the situation. Try to work through it instead of escaping. You will find that the more times you face your fear, the less frightening it will become.

If you are one who decides that the panic attacks are just too much for you to handle and you want to seek outside help, there are programs available. Many of the programs teach techniques for controlling the panic attacks without the use of medications. There is help available, so don’t hesitate to reach out and get control of your life.

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