Management of Panic Attacks


What Causes Panic Attacks?

Panic attacks solely originate from the mind. The most common trigger comes from the subconscious mind. It contains repressed emotions, suppressed hurt feelings, fears and phobias, and images of past traumatic experiences. When any of these forgotten experiences suddenly surface in the conscious mind, a series of physiological and chemical responses are triggered. Brain 'misinterprets' it as life threatening. This is the typical fight or flight response to any danger.

All impulsive behavior due to piled up stress and anxieties are also kind of panic attacks – in mild intensity though. If the stress and anxieties continue to grow, the person will become more susceptible to being the state of chronic panic.

Sometimes a panic attack starts off slowly in the form of mental chatter – a constant flow of thoughts and mental dialogue. We all have this internal conversation going on most of the time even when we are busy with other activities. When triggered by unpleasant memory or event this mental chatter get highly negative and compulsive – one negative thought feeding on the other.

Soon the person start imagining worst possible scenarios and loses his sense of mental balance – at least momentarily. By the time he regains some semblance of normal awareness, he is already in the tight grip of physiological triggers.

The worst thing a panic attack does is that the person loses control on himself and his behavior. When repeated a few times, he begins to fear the occurrence of panic attack itself – a typical case of phobia turning into a nightmare.

Situation Specific Panic Attacks

Any fear or phobia can trigger a panic attack if you are forced to live with it. For example, if you have stage fear watch for the intense panic and feelings of helplessness if you are forced before an audience of dozen people.

It applies to all fears such as that of height, water, darkness, and so on. But these can be prevented by avoiding the trigger situations.

Most Common Symptoms of Panic Attacks

Feelings of losing control or going crazy
Trembling or shaking
Chest pain or discomfort
Shortness of breath
Dizziness or feeling like you’re going to faint
A pounding heart and increased pulse rate

Tips to Manage Panic Attacks

  • Reduce levels anxieties and stress – Resolve conflicts and reduce social encounters that are potentially stress inducing. Learn to let go of mental load. Streamline your life so that you get good rest and eat healthy meals at regular times.

  • Treat panic attacks just as bad dreams – they are just painful emotional responses and can’t actually kill or harm you. Always keep this thought at the back of the mind.

  • Avoid alcohol and caffeine. Avoid stimulants such as caffeine and CNS depressants, especially alcohol. They actually reduce your capacity to fight emotional responses of the panic attacks.

  • Practice deep breathing – Panic attacks make you restless by grabbing your process of breathing – it gets short and shallow. Train yourself in breathing deeply and slowly – make sure to breath all the way from your diaphragm (under your rib cage). Regular practice will keep you rather relaxed and give you better self control.

  • Start exercising regularly – Exercising releases endorphins that release stress and make you feel good. Make sure to exercise daily to get a constant dose of endorphins and a progressively increased sense of well being. A half hour routine of different body weight exercises will tone up neuro-muscular connections giving you better control on yourself.

Useful Resources

Natural Remedies for Anxieties, Fear, and Panic Attacks
Home Remedies for Panic Attacks


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