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Guide to Panic Attack Symptoms

Deal With Panic Attack Symptoms Directly

Panic attacks are as difficult as they are unpredictable, and dealing with the different panic attack symptoms seems difficult. You might think that you are having a heart attack or are slowly losing your mind and it can leave you frightened and uneasy in the end. Fortunately, there is a way to manage the symptoms and even deal with the problem directly.

What Is a Panic Attack?

The main emotion that fuels a panic attack is anxiety. This is an all-natural sensation hard-wired to our brain to help the body adapt and deal with threats. The problem only pops up if the body reacts to threats that are simply not there.

The sensation is best described as a gradually increasing sensation that either something horrible is going to pop up around the corner or you might put yourself in a situation that might embarrass you for a lifetime. Fortunately, the panic attack is brief as it feeds off on your body’s energy which is limited (hence sufferers also feel drained out after the attack).

While the attack is mercifully brief (10 minutes at the most), its effects can last a lifetime. Most sufferers are afraid of suffering from the various symptoms that they would rather remain enclosed in their personal safe spaces or turn to substances like drugs and alcohol to cope with the effects. Both scenarios are not ideal as the former is limiting while the other leads to a destructive cycle of substance abuse.

Panic attack symptoms include shortness of breath, chest pains, dizziness, increasing palpitations (i.e. the heart feels like it is “racing”), numbness in the hands or fingers, breathing difficulties, and an overall sense of dread of losing control. Some sufferers claim that the sensation is like having a heart attack albeit without actually going into cardiac arrest.

How to Take Control

If and when a panic attack does occur, the first order of business for you is to take control of your reactions. Regulate your breathing as this can gradually restore the oxygen levels in your brain should allow you to think clearly. Breathing deeply can also have a soothing effect on the body, giving it enough time to reorganize itself.

The next area to tackle is your mind. It has to be brought back to reality and stop it from spiraling out of control. List down what you normally think of when you are panicking and even the thoughts that can cause you to panic in the first place. Then, try to come up with different logical rebuttals to these and remember them. This way, you have something rooted in reality to fall back to if your brain starts reciting these thoughts again.

Lastly, you will have to make a habit out of thinking positively. Most panic attacks can be categorized as either overestimating or catastrophizing. The former is when you believe that something bad is going to happen while the latter is when you think that your present course is going to put you in a situation that can embarrass you for a lifetime. Both of these thoughts are negative in nature and you need to push it out of your system. Instead, think about the instances when you did manage similar situations successfully as these can give you a standard to look back to.

Seek Help

Whenever you feel that you are overwhelmed by the different panic attack symptoms, do not hesitate to seek help. This is why sufferers are best accompanied when in public, so someone can assist them should ever an attack occur.

Also, it is recommended that you seek medical help when dealing with this condition. A professional should be more than capable of helping you identify how anxiety affects your body and come up with a long-term plan to help you manage it.

Remember that dealing with panic attacks is a lifelong process. You cannot expect to be rid of it within a few months and the different symptoms can pop up in one way or another as your brain tries to normalize itself. However, it is most certain that the condition can be treated and, with diligence on your part, you can become more confident in reining it in as each day passes.

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