Stop Panic Attacks Cold In Their Tracks

By: Matt Barlow

Panic attacks are considered to be dangerous when left unchecked and repeated attacks may indicate panic disorder. A panic or anxiety attack is defined as an intense and overwhelming experience of anxiety.

These panic incidents can explode suddenly, without any indicators. There is no doubt that these experiences of unadulterated panic can leave a person with extreme discomfort and weakness. Even though most attacks last just a matter of minutes, the perception of time is often altered and just 10 minutes may seem like hours. Probably the most insidious byproducts of panic attacks is the constant fear of a repeat attack, which may explode again at any time and in any place.

If you are experiencing symptoms of a panic or anxiety attack right now, here are some things you can do to help alleviate the symptoms:

- Correct Your Posture: When sitting hunched over, your heart, lungs, and other organs will be compressed and breathing will be constricted. Sit up straight to increase blood flow.

- Breathe Deeply: One symptom of anxiety attacks is fast and shallow breathing. By breathing deeply, into the abdomen, the senses will be calmed and the heart beat will slow down to a normal rate. Deep, abdominal breathing has also been shown to normalize blood pressure.

- Keep A Journal: Describe the events that led up to the attack in a journal. By describing something in detail you are drawing your mind out of the cycle of fear (repeating panic attacks). When the attack subsides, write down as much detail as you can about how you were able to break out of the panic. This journal will be a life saver should you have another panic or anxiety attack.

- Shake Up Your Environment: Panic attacks can be triggered by any number of associations. Crowded rooms, a certain song, driving in the car, even a scent. Shake up your environment radically. If you are in a bar with loud music, go home with a friend and put on some soft and comforting music.

Although most of our anxieties in day-to-day life can be traced to a particular cause, the anxiety associated with panic attacks often defy reason and seem to have no source whatsoever. By following established treatments, you can learn to recognize the signs of an impending attack and you can stop the attack cold its tracks.

You may be surprised to find out that there is no real medical explanation for panic attacks. Modern research suggests that they result from a combination of biological, social, and environmental components. Stressful life events, such as the loss of a loved one, are also known to contribute to panic attack predisposition. If you are experiencing panic disorder, you are not alone. It is estimated that over 3 million Americans suffer from panic and anxiety attacks. It is also important that you realize that this condition is curable and you can be free of panic and anxiety for good.

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