How to Cope With Panic Attacks

How to Cope With Panic Attacks
How to Cope With Panic Attacks

If you have ever experienced a panic attack, you know that it can be very frightening and you may feel like you are unable to control what is going on. In reality, you may have more control than you think. 

Going through a panic attack is not easy but there are some things you can do to help calm yourself down, and to make the experience a little less terrifying. Firstly, you can focus on your breathing. During an attack you may start breathing really fast; this is known as hyperventilation. You can make an effort to focus on your breathing by slowing it down, and holding your breath for a couple seconds in the process. This regulates oxygen levels and can help calm you down. 

Secondly, you can reassure and comfort yourself. You can repeat statements to yourself that make you feel less flustered and scared. For example, you can acknowledge what is happening by saying, ‘I am having a panic attack. It feels scary but it will not physically harm me.’ You can also say, ‘this is temporary, it will pass.’ You can tell yourself that you are safe and that you can breathe. 

While experiencing an attack, you should try to relax your muscles. You can start with your toes by tensing them up and slowly relaxing them, and then moving your way up your body. It can be hard to focus on an activity such as this during an attack, so practicing it as much as you can, may help you in getting used to it. 

Lastly, you can speak to a friend or family member. During an attack, you may want to get away from other people, but letting yourself talk to someone about this may not only help you, but the person can reassure you that there is no immediate cause for concern, and can also help you with breathing exercises. 

 

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