During A Panic Attack

What You Should Do During A Panic Attack:

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Anxiety makes us feel on edge, uncomfortable, and stressed out during the period that it persists.  Panic attacks however, are when this anxiety falsely triggers our natural fight-or-flight mechanism that causes the immediate chaos of agonizing physical symptoms that makes panic attacks so scary.  When panic attacks occur there are some things you can do in the moment to regain control again.  Here is a list of possibilities for you to try:

  • Take control by shouting “Stop!” to yourself to interrupt your brain and snap it out of its normal pattern
  • Slow your breathing pattern down through deep breathing techniques
  • Remove yourself from your present location
  • Do math or other mental puzzles to give your brain a more demanding task
  • Take charge by issuing self-affirmations to yourself
  • Do light exercise or something physical to ‘reset’ your body’s physiological response
  • If you’re in a place where you can put some relaxing music on try that
  • Try muscle relaxation techniques
  • Breathe in and out into a paper bag
  • Do a word game to distract your brain

Realize that not all of these methods will work for you so you must experiment with each of them to find out which of these techniques will work best for you.  For more information I have made a video on nine excellent ways to stop a panic attack when they strike.

What You Never Want To Hear Someone Ask You During A Panic Attack:

Panic attacks are a truly awful experience.  And at times downright scary.  The physical symptoms can make you feel like you’re actually dying and when you start thinking about that, even though it’s impossible, the panic attack can accelerate even further causing hyperventilation and other awful things.

Even though most people are meaning well, the last thing you want to hear when you’re experiencing a panic attack is a non-sufferer trying to reason you through it.  Sorry but it just doesn’t work that way.  It’s not their fault really.  Unless they’ve been through it before like we have they cannot possibly understand how miserable and out of control we feel in that moment.

I found this video on the psychcentral.com website embedded below on that very topic.  If you’re a panic attack sufferer I think you’ll appreciate it because nearly all of us have been in this situation before:

To Recap The Video:

The Top Five Things You Never Want To Be Asked While Experiencing A Panic Attack:happy face icon

  1. Just calm down
  2. Why can’t you just relax?
  3. There’s nothing wrong with you
  4. Sit Down
  5. You’re Overreacting

Thank you to Summer Beretsky over at Psychcentral for bringing us this entertaining video.


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