Panic Attacks. In the moment. What I do about them.

When I have a panic attack, and I have a lot of them, I usually am too incapacitated to do anything about them, but let them run their course. This is not always the case though. Sometimes I keep a clear head amidst all of the panic and I am able to lower the intensity of the panic attack. That is what I would like to talk about today. Becoming able to predict and prevent and in the case of having one lower the intensity of a panic attack.

According to Mayo Clinic, “A panic attack is a sudden episode of intense fear that triggers severe physical reactions when there is no real danger or apparent cause.”

So what do we do to prevent them from happening. I honestly do not know, but as a result of having so many I have developed a sense of them and I can accurately predict when they are about to happen. The way I do it is by checking my anxiety. Constantly. I am constantly looking at my anxiety levels and if there is a spike in my anxiety I know that I might be close to having a panic attack. you also need to judge what type of anxiety that you are having. Whether it be social or otherwise. Depending on the anxiety type (New post about that soon) you can address that issue.

For example, I am in front of my class giving a presentation with one or two other people. I start to feel a gradual increase in my social anxiety. I then use skills I have personally developed that combat social anxiety. Not the “look at everyone naked’ thing either. The way I deal with it is complex and I will save that for my social anxiety posts. Using the skills I am able to lower my anxiety and potentially avoid the panic attack.

I want to note, however, this is not a sure-fire way to stop them. You have to figure out what works best for you when it comes to panic attacks. Unfortunately, you have to make yourself into your own guinea pig and test out coping skills that you can use. Then after everything happens, gauge how effective the skill was.

Let us say that you cannot prevent the panic attack though. What do you do? What options are there? I can say from experience that it feels like there is not any way out of it, but I assure you there is. I have done it.

What I do is focus. It may sound trivial, but hear me out. I focus on what is giving me the anxiety that caused the panic. The key thing to note here is that you have to figure out what caused your panic attack. It is usually underlying anxiety that just bubbles up very fast and causes you disorientation.

Focus on that one thing and nothing else. Then use the one thing that unwarranted fear and anxiety cannot stand up to: logic.

Focus on the logic that you have. Panic attacks are usually unwarranted fear or anxiety so tell that fear and anxiety why they cannot exist. Tell them that they are not wanted, and that they are not welcome in your head.

Well, that is what I do. I am sorry if the explanation was a little vague, but future posts will provide more context to this one. Thanks for reading!

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