... very difficult thing to do, What can I do to help me take control of that point in time.
Panic/Anxiety attack usually begin abruptly shortness of breath anxiousness.
Panic attacks cannot be predicted. At least in the early stages of the disorder, there is no trigger that starts the attack. Recalling a past attack may trigger panic attacks. Sometimes when you're overwhelmed or too much stimulation can bring on a anxiety attacks
In my experience I concentrate on your breathing inhale and exhale slowly keep on doing it until you get a good deep breath. Are you taking any medication for the anxiety? I've found that talking - if somebody is there with you during the attacks have them talk you through the process, distraction.
There are several benzodiazepines that help with the anxiety, the shortness of breath and anxiousnesss. It is hard to do but once you get the grasp to do you'll excel. I have had panic disorder for 18 years, I tell you everytime I have a panic attack it feels like the first time.
I hope this helps.
The best way I prevent my panic attacks when they first started is to think about what triggered the attacks. That way I could try & avoid them before they start.
Like others have said here the breathing is the first thing you need to concentrate on... You need to get somewhere that is quite it is best to have someone to help talk to you to calm you down... If someone is not there with you.. Then call someone on the phone. It is best to talk to someone that knows you have these panic attacks. Go online & look up all the signs & how to get out of the attack & , make sure you inform your contact person also.
The MOST IMPORTANT thing to do is to calm down... Then focus on taking a deep breath thru your nose slowly until you cannot take in any more air.. (you can practice this when you are at home anytime..if you put your hand on your stomach you will feel your stomach rise)
then hold the breath for a second & very SLOWLY breath the air ou t of your Mouth
Keep blowing until it feels like you have no more air left to blow out (again if you are practicing you will feel with your hand that your stomach falls)
Then you continue to take these deep breaths & reassure yourself that you are safe. By doing the deep breathing slowly it will stop you from hyper ventilating which is the thing that will throw your panic attack full blown if you cannot control your breathing. Because when you are in the hyper ventilating it puts your body into a "fight" mood & elevates your pulse & heart rate then you start sweating & getting dizzy.
Just practice the breathing techniques so you are ready... Plus if you feel nervous our anxious try the breathing technique it will help. If all this fails then go to the dr. & see if they can give you some medication.
I wish you the best of luck as panic attacks can feel like you are having a heart attack. Best wishes, Kathy
Sometimes I just need to tell myself that I am ok, and going to be ok. Everyone says practice breathing and that may sound silly, but it does help if you can focus on your body. Do things like take slow deep breaths, stretch if you are somewhere you can. Its hard when you're in public or around co-workers or strangers... but if you can remind yourself that you are going to be ok and be confident in that, it will help. When I first started having panic attacks I did not know that I was going to be ok... because I really wasn't ok. But now that I know I'm not alone (my confidence is that God is aware of what I'm feeling and I can ask him for strength and comfort) because I've learned that you can't always rely on others to be there when you need, especially if you're like me and have put a lot of my hope in others to "make me feel better." I have had to gain strength within myself and put faith in God to carry me through...
Easier said than done... but I am getting better at it. So that is what I can suggest. Hope this helps some. Hope you gain strength. Panic attacks/anxiety is such a difficult thing to deal with. Positive self talk is helpful if you can tell yourself that you are ok and that "this" - what you're experiencing at the moment is ok and normal, and that you will get thru it... So that's the advice I have to offer. Best wishes! And keep in touch if you need!
Are you under the care of a PCP or a Psychiatrist. It makes a difference in how health care providers address you panic attacks. Unlike a lot of folks on this site, I'm a retired Heath care person, and I was taught that "an ounce of prevention is worth more than a pound of cure". I was raised in a medical family and was brainwashed that very thing in school also. We call it an intervention, catch the problem early and the symptoms don't progress and therefore are simpler to treat. Panic Disorder is a psychiatric diagnosis best handled by a Psychiatrist and not your family doc.
I too have this, terrifying at times, disorder and for the most part or most of the time, my psych doc gave me clonazepam, it prevented most of my attacks. Mine were terrifying to the point of having trouble breathing, heart palpitations, I actually thought I had a heart attack one episode. To prevent that and to make my life' worth living without the constant worry about when the next one would hit, I took my clonazepam as directed and like magic, my symptoms disappeared. And I have stayed on it for 30+ years without any side effects or any other issues.
The major opposition to clonazepam on this site, and many non psych docs, is that is a benzodiazapine and is addicting. Am I addicted ... yes. Do I want to stop this med ... NO! As I said, takes care of my anxiety and panic attacks quite well, why should I suffer because some people are against these types of meds. It's my body, and I am the one living in my head, how can anyone but, yours truly, know what is best for me? I researched all meds and made an informed decision regarding this ' my best friend' med ... and don't ever plan on stopping. Can I take myself off of clonazepam, yes, I tapered slowly and jumped off. The only thing that happened, my anxiety and panic disorders came right on in the open door. Well, after proving to myself I could get off of them, why suffer a miserable life without when I could and would br happy with my best friends.
I am a functional human through the miracle of modern medications. So what? Do diabetics get harassed about taking their insulin, do heart failure patients feel guilty about taking their life saving meds ... NO! Why should I?
So I don't. Just a fact.
So ... if you need something for your panic disorder, go tell the appropriate doc and let your psych doc do his thing.
Along with panic and anxiety meds, I'm on a lot more for a bunch of psych issues. They aren't benzos and I'm taking them along with my Psychiatrist's prescription and taking all of my meds as prescribed and am doing well, I think, for a certified nut, crazy loon. I have a great life now that my psych issues are under control right now. But thongs change and sometimes I don't handle stress or my life becomes totally overwhelming ... and I go in for a 'tweaking' of my meds until I'm back on track. At that point, I jump into my little PT Cruiser and mosey on down the road to continue with my life.
So there you have it ... my 5 cents worth. Take what you want from this post and toss the things you don't need.
Have a happy, unstressed life adventure.
PS: Sorry for being so long winded ... been up all night, hopeless insomniac. Maybe I'll talk to my shrink about this next visit. Cheers!!
Hi meta marie... My psychiatrist recommends at the onset to take a lunch size type paper bag and place it around your mouth holding onto it and begin breathing in and out of it. The exchange of air will stop the attack from escalating because of the carbon dioxide being exchanged into the bag as you continue to breathe in and out of the bag... He recommends that in lieu of medication because it brings the anxiety part down very quickly...
Just my two cents worth here...
Just wanted to say that sweet hippie is right on target. When talking to my therapist I told him what the attack was like. I felt like a very small child unable to do anything but cry and shake, scream, thrash, and nothing made sense. I felt trapped. I also told him my story of being a very small chld and unable to stop my mom from being beaten. Yeah, that was the connection. My other meds raised my anxiety but my mind went to something tragic. I now take Xanax at a very small dose every morning. I will probably take it the rest of my life. My stress levels are greatly improved. Well worth it. I am not sedated nor dreamy, loopy. I feel normal and not always wondering when the next something is going to upset me. My last attack was because I knocked a container over and the glass lid broke. I freaked. Add med, no problems.
When the transmission went out on the car at a shopping center and my oxygen was low, i started calling friends for a ride rather than my hubby thinking he could push me in a wheel chair the three miles home. He panicked, not me.
I really don't agree with avoiding situations. It builds greater fear and more reactivity. Since life is what it is, there is no way to avoid things. The life of an agoraphobic is so sad and profoundly difficult. Withdrawing just negatively reinforces us of upcoming tragedies that will happen and we will be helpless. A frightening prospect confirming more attacks. Of course there are reasons for panic attacks. A therapist helps sort it out.
Meditation is the best to do. Yoga can help as well. Comedies rather than dramas. Sleepless in Seattle rather than Terminators. Mozart instead of rap. If your heart starts pounding to the tv, turn it off. Why drive yourself into a panic? The body doesnt know why you are disturbed, it just knows to kick in the flight or fight response. Keep the anxiety low in life. It is doable and you will be surprised how many people you know have battled this. Some of us were just too abused as children or adults and we need the meds. It is ok. getting better is the goal. So many wonderful things to do instead. Step by step and you can be greatly improved. Wishing you wellness. Karen
If you really want to help control panic/anxiety attacks drug free, and I do have them but I cannot do this myself, so don't think that I am preaching, is to practice meditation and controlled breathing. You cannot do this when you think you are having a panic attack as it is not a PRN method. but is has been studied and proven that you can control them with the controlled breathing, provided you practice it for at least 20 min. daily. Otherwise, you do like I do, rely on medication, and if you do happen to have a panic/anxiety attack, you start the controlled breathing, which tends to help lessen the attack. Hence the advice to breathe in a paper bag. The attack is caused by unconscious rapid breathing. best of luck to you. I know how awful these things are!!
Hello meta marie313. The best thing to do? Remember, no matter how awfull you are feeling, tell yourself its going to pass. And it does. The one blessing in panic attacks is it passes and then you feel as if you won the battle and you have. Mind over emotions. Powerfull tool. Best of wishes to you, pledge
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