You have an upset stomach; you take antacids to rid you of the pain. You have a headache; you take ibuprofen or aspirin to control the pain. Your heart is racing as you finished your aerobic exercise. You feel short of breath after climbing up 10 flights of stairs. You feel tingly and nervous and sweaty – are you in love? The thing is, any of these symptoms could mean anything. However, put them all together and throw in sensations of intense fear and doom, then there’s a possibility that you are experiencing a panic attack. If such is the case, the first thing you would want to do is find out how to get rid of panic attacks.
There is psychotherapy, medications, and some experts say, a change in lifestyle. These options work but what if the panic attack is actually happening? Is there anything you can do? Here are some of the things that you can do that will help you get rid of panic attacks:
If you’re one big coach potato, do something about it. Get active! Do some exercises or any type of sports to get you on a different kind of adrenalin pattern. A bout of a panic attack makes your heart palpitate and blood rush in your head. An attack is all about a release of adrenalin for a “fight or flight” mode. A panic attack is a physiological thing at the onset. Exercising could actually “burn” the excess adrenalin. So once it hits, go for a focused quick walk, jump in place, wiggle jiggle – whatever it is you do, burn energy!
Take a Breath
Hyperventilating is taking short-shallow breaths. At the onset of a panic attack, you hyperventilate and gasp. Not good. You have to remember to take slow deep breaths. Expand your chest. Breathe using your diaphragm – just like the way singers do it. Breathe in and out real slow. When done properly, being aware of and controlling your breath can help you get rid of panic attacks.
Get a Massage
The attacks tense up your muscles especially in the neck, throat, shoulders and diaphragm areas. The added stress from your tensed-up muscles will add more pressure on you. If you can, massage the affected areas to ease up on tension. If there’s someone with you, let him or her massage the back of your neck one side at a time. Remember to take deep slow breaths.
Stay Put and dare the attack
During a panic attack your body switches to the “flight or fight” mode, well, don’t! That is, don’t punch anyone within arm’s-length (kidding!) and don’t run as if hell hounds are after you. The best thing to do is for you to stay put and get a hold of yourself. Running from the place where the attack takes place will only worsen things. Remind yourself that no matter what, the attack will not harm you. And if you can dare and ‘tell’ the attack “Come on, I am not afraid of you,” you will be surprised to find out that you have just managed to stop the attack in its tracks. How? By depriving it from its most important ingredient – fear!
If the attacks occur on a fairly regular basis, make sure you see a qualified doctor for a more comprehensive evaluation and diagnosis to reinforce and validate your knowledge on how to get rid of panic attacks. You may also want to check out different options such as PanicAway or the Linden Method for help.