What is anxiety disorder and panic attacks
What is a panic attack is a question that is not asked by people. This is because , more often that not ,people are unaware of the symptoms of an anxiety attack. They truly don’t know what constitutes a panic attack. A panic attack could be defined as an involuntary anxious bout of fear or apprehension. One might experience sudden pounding of the heart and feeling of breathlessness. A person undergoing a panic attack needs to be aware of the same so as to cure it before it turns into a severe disorder. In the next few paragraphs we will see what to do for a panic anxiety attack.
Help for panic attacks and anxiety
The foremost things that helps with anxiety attacks is to first accept that you are having an anxiety attack. As soon as that is clear, it is imperative that you focus on our breath. Once you realise that you response to any situation or event is an anxiety disorder, you need to simply sip a glass of water and take deep breaths. The breathing in question is what is referred to as abdominal breathing (See Video). An anxiety disorder is not a mental illness and therefore it need not be hidden from friends or family. Instead it is advised to be open about it so that timely interventions in lifestyle and attitude can be made either through counselling, Yoga, change in food habits, among others.
Symptoms of a panic attack or anxiety attack
To begin with, just make sure that you don’t step back from daily life. If the occurrence of panic attacks drains you and dissuades you from going about your regular chores, make sure that you start identifying the triggers. What you can do is to watch out for the signs of a panic or anxiety attack. Be watchful for any abnormal palpitations, breaking out into sweat, tremors, drying of mouth, constriction in throat, sweating, premonition of any untoward incident. The intensity and duration might vary from seconds to hours but it can last for about 30 minutes if you do not address it immediately.
How to help with panic attacks
The following suggestions are aimed at helping you prevent and eliminate panic or anxiety attacks using simple lifestyle practices. If implemented as a part of life, these will help you deal with panic attacks and anxiety and also reduce or eliminate these over a period of time
A sound mind in a sound body makes sure that anxiety, stress or a sense of lack of control does not come your way. So the first step is to be in control of your thoughts.
Be aware of the fact that your breath is the be all and end all of your life, literally! So the fuller your breath, the better you are in control of yourself – your thoughts, your speech and your actions.
Follow a daily regimen that includes such stress- relieving activities as exercise, Yoga, Running, Jogging or simply waking up few minutes early and observing the rising sun.
Sound and restful sleep goes a long way in alleviating feeling of anxiety and depression. Make it a habit to recount the days activities, focusing on the small events that brought a smile on your face. If you are unable to list anything worth recounting, don’t despair. Just remember that you are alive and in a bed – these small reminders shall make you realise that you are indeed better off than a lot of people.
Eating regular, healthy meals is another important aspect of stress-free living. Make sure that you watch yourself for any bouts of binge eating or comfort food eating. These are early indicators of depression or stress. So make sure that you are aware of your Body Mass Index (BMI) and weight. You need to take in only those many calories as are required for your healthy living. Excess calories are bound to make your sluggish and prone to feelings or laziness, lethargy and helplessness. ‘A moment on your lips and forever on your hips’ is not just a funny line. It actually works like that if you do not eat consciously. Keep yourself hydrated through frequent sips of water throughout the day.
Excess of everything is bad and therefore moderation has to be your key mantra. A disciplined, healthy, lifestyle that focuses on your mental, emotional, physical and spiritual well-being will give you the kind of rock-solid foundation that no event or person can shake.
The more you invest in yourself, the more you will gain. So make sure that you are the only protagonist of your life. Know that you are the owner of your life. Your response to any situation is in your hand. This knowledge is what can help you avoid any panic attacks. A situation is only as powerful as you allow it to be. So be careful of your response to the situation and it will surely turn into your best interest.
The most important thing to remember is to PAUSE as soon as you feel the onset of a panic attack. This can be achieved in myriad ways. You can sip a glass of water, count up to ten or even hundred, take few deep breaths or simply curb the urge to respond immediately. If possible, walk away from the situation, perhaps a short walk to the loo! Remember it is a feeling and if you do not allow it to linger, it will die down. Don’t feed the demon by staying put. Make a note of the situation and let it be. Know that you are in charge and can take action to undo any damage.
Panic attack or anxiety, be it in the form of stage fright, presentation, speaking to a partner, dating, meeting new clients, networking, job interviews, hospital check-ups, project deadline delays, financial loss, emotional triggers, ragging, bullying, fear of the unforeseen, lasts as long as you feel that you are powerless. So the best way to get over that feeling is that once you have paused and got yourself centred, envision the worst case scenario. More often than not, we realise that we can live through that and with that realisation comes the power to beat any panic.