If you suffer from panic attacks, you would definitely agree with me that it is one of the most terrifying experiences and you would do anything to make it stop. A panic attack during pregnancy is far scarier because not only is the mother-to-be concerned about herself but also about her unborn baby and the effects if any on the baby. On a lighter note, it has been said that pregnancy is a nine-month panic attack.
If you are pregnant and are late to panic attacks, there are some things that you can do to control some of the symptoms of the attack to make it more bearable. Below are some tips on how to handle a panic attack during pregnancy.
Nearly one-third of all Americans suffer from panic attacks annually. The usual panic attack symptoms are rapid increase in heart rate, nausea, difficulty breathing, hot flashes and dizziness. You may also experience chest pains, headaches, tightness in your throat and abdominal pains. These symptoms vary from one individual to another and also depend on how severe the disorder is.
Consult Your Doctor
If you suffer from panic attacks, you should inform your doctor and your obstetrician. If possible, inform them about the triggers of your attacks, medication if any and what you normally do during an attack. This information is very useful for your doctor to help develop a plan to manage your panic attacks during your pregnancy.
It is common to feel scared about having a panic attack during your delivery. For some women, just the thought of delivering a baby triggers an attack. You should request for a higher dose of sedatives from your doctor during your delivery to minimize the chances of you having an attack. However, you must also be informed that a higher dosage will also mean that your muscles are weaker and therefore your push strength will not be as strong.
Manage Your Stress Level
One of the most common triggers of a panic attack is stress. Although we can not eliminate stress completely, there are a few things you can do to help reduce your stress level during pregnancy.
Stay away from foods and beverages that contain caffeine. Most mothers-to-be stop drinking alcohol and smoking while pregnant, but many continue to drink coffee and tea and consume food rich in sugar. These substances are known panic attack triggers so you should minimize your intake of these foods.