Panic Attack Tips – 7 Techniques That Helped Me!
Today I will be discussing panic attack tips and 7 techniques that helped me when I would suffer with them.
Panic attacks are truly terrifying, something anyone who has suffered having one will agree with.
Your heart beats out of your chest, breathing becomes more difficult, and everything you feel is impending death. Luckily there are ways to keep attacks from happening, or even riding one out while remaining relatively calm.
I was 36 when I had my first one, and I needed an ambulance, as at the time I truly believed I was going to die, it was horrible.
The paramedic talked me through calming myself down and I felt a bit silly afterwards as I thought I was having a stroke or heart attack!
I used to suffer with regular panic attacks for a period of about 2 years. Over time I learned how to control them and calm down myself down, and eventually eradicate them completely.
Panic attacks can be unpredictable. And I think it’s important to know how to deal with them when they happen because you’re not always in a place where you can just lie down and ride it out.
These techniques are designed to take the mind off the state of panic that you’re in and respond to something else instead. It can help you calm down faster, or avoid the panic attack altogether. They don’t work for everyone, but here are some of my favourites.
Disclaimer: I am not in any way a certified therapist so all the advice is given from my own experience and should not be taken as medical advice.
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How You Know You Are Having a Panic Attack
Before you learn how to control panic it is important to first understand what the signs and symptoms are for a panic attack. Not only does this tell you if that is exactly what you are experiencing, but it helps you to recognise the signs early so you can start implementing some of these strategies quickly. This lets you put a stop to the panic attack before it progresses, since they do tend to worsen over time. Here are some different symptoms you might experience:
- Tunnel vision
- Dizziness or light-headedness
- Fight or flight
- Fear of losing control
- Racing heartbeat
- Flushes or chills
- Tingling in the extremities
- Twitching or trembling muscles
- Feeling like you aren’t real
- Flushed face
- Fear of dying
Many people mistaken the symptoms of a panic attack with a heart attack since they are very similar, right up to the chest pains and dizziness. The problem with this is that even if you know you are having a panic attack, you have an intense worry that your worrying could lead to a heart attack, which then worsens the symptoms of the panic attack, making you feel like it is leading to a heart attack. The circle can continue unless you are able to put a stop to it.
Panic Attack Tips
Practice deep breathing
If you’re searching for tips to help you learn how to stop a panic attack fast, you’ve probably read about deep breathing. It’s one of the most common breathing techniques for anxiety and panic attacks, but it’s not always easy for everyone. It does take practice, but when you get the hang of it, you’ll be able to do it with ease.
To get started, find a chair to sit down in and put your arms on the armrests. Take a deep breath in through your nose, lasting for about 5 seconds, hold your breath for 3 seconds, and then breathe out through your mouth for 7 seconds. Repeat 10 times, and as you get more comfortable, you can repeat up to 20 times
The below channels on YouTube are great for guided meditations;
If you want to learn about meditation, the follow channel is excellent:
If you’re interested in learning more in-depth about meditation, then the below books are excellent:
Mindfulness is our innate ability to be fully present in the moment – to focus on where we are and what we’re doing without allowing other, intrusive thoughts, worries, or fears to permeate our minds. When we’re practicing mindfulness, we’re impartial and non-judgmental to what’s happening around us, and when our minds wander, we redirect our thoughts back to the present moment.
Mindfulness sounds pretty simple in theory, but we live in a day and age where we are encouraged to overschedule our time as much as possible, and it can be surprisingly difficult to focus on the here and now without letting all of the things that are vying for our attention to take hold and send us into a stress-induced state.
If you’re looking for tips on how to stop a panic attack fast, mindfulness is an excellent strategy to learn. There are tons of great mindfulness resources and classes available online, and you may be able to find mindfulness instructors and classes within your area.
Want to find out how practicing Mindfulness helped me turn my life around? Then see below:
- Why is Mindfulness Important? – Read How Mindfulness Changed my life
- 8 Easy Mindfulness Activities – Simple Guide to Calm The Mind!
Some great channels that I use for mindfulness videos, are the following:
I also recommend the following books to read:
Muscle relaxation techniques
Help with calming your body. Focus on one body part at a time and release any tension then move on to the next area. Practice doing this at night when you’re chilling in bed.
I like to start with my feet and work my way up the body. Take deep breaths and release any tension in that body part before moving on to the next. You may drift off to sleep from the relaxation. During a panic attack focus on this until you’re through the other side of the panic attack.
Close your eyes while doing deep breathing or muscle relaxation. If you’re feeling lightheaded this is not the best alternative. Instead, focus on an object while breathing. You may find one way works better for you than another.
Want to find out more about how slowing down and focusing on the present can help you be more productive? Then the see post below:
First, notice five things around you, then four things that can be touched, then three that can be heard, two that can be smelled, and one thing that can be tasted.
That way your mind is not focused on fear and doesn’t run around bouncing from one to another worry.
This is a common exercise often recommended by physicians to people that suffer from frequent panic attacks.
Focus on an object
During a panic attack, find one object and focus all your attention on it. Note everything you can about it (patterns, colours, size, etc.) to yourself.
This technique has the potential to take your mind off your panic attack and help your symptoms subside.
Pick a colour
Take a look around you, are there a particular colour you can see? Blue, green, pink?
Now, search the area around you and find as many objects as you can in that colour. Once you run out of things, you can move on to the next colour. And repeat, until you start to feel better.
This one is quite fun, and if you are a visual person it may be a better option than the two above as you are focusing on things that are actually in front of you.
Learn as much as you can about panic attacks. This could be the key to your handling of them. Make sure you learn as much as you can about the possible causes and how to deal with them. The more information you have, the better able you will deal with a panic attack when you have one.
Panic attack tips – Final thought
Each of these ways have been helpful to me when I was suffering from panic attacks. If you can apply some of them, your panic attacks won’t be so severe and extreme.
Once the severity of the symptoms starts to wear out, you will know that you are on the right track. It is not a fast process, but if you are persistent in your attempts to prevent and stop panic attacks, at one point they will go away.
What are your coping techniques for panic attacks? I would to hear them below.
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