For many people, the scariest times of their life are when they're having anxiety attacks. When going through a panic attack you may feel symptoms such as lightheadedness, heart palpitations, dizziness, hyperventilation, and complete disorientation with reality. Because of this confusion, and these extremely uncomfortable feelings, everyone who's experienced this sort of thing just once, wants only one thing – immediate relief.
In this article, I will give you some tips on how to immediately seek relief when having an anxiety attack, as well as some long-term treatments that may be helpful to you.
First, observe your breathing patterns. Typically, you will be breathing slowly and quickly, which is a physiological arousal for panic. Simply by correcting your breathing you will send physiological messages to your brain to no longer panic as much. You want to breathe slowly and deeply, inhaling through your nose using your diaphragm. You know you are breathing right if your shoulders do not move up and down when you breathe.
Second, do not engage in future-based thinking. Often time's people will compound their anxiety by thinking about negative things that may soon happen to them or could happen to them in their panicked state. If you catch yourself thinking "what if", then shift it into "what now".
Third, do not try to "fight" the attack. Typically, fighting an attackrings about resistance which in turn increases the episode. It is better to acknowledge that the attack is occurring and accept the fact that you're experiencing a panic attack and that it will pass. By floating with the symptoms instead of trying to fight them you will immediately decrease the amount of panic you feel.
Finally, having someone to turn to for support when you're experiencing an anxiety attack can be extremely beneficial.
In the long-term, there are a number of different options available to you to decrease your chances of having a bout with anxiety. In this case, there are certain medications, cognitive therapies, as well as dietary and fitness options that you should pursue. Cognitive behavioral therapy is regardless of the most successful type of therapy for treating these types of attacks.
It is important that you develop coping strategies so you can spend less time in a panicked state and more time enjoying your life. Use some of the strategies I have outlined above to make this happen and continuously experiment and find new ways to handle anxiety attacks when they occur.