A panic attack or panic disorder is a wave of anxiety and fear that is extraordinary. Your heart beats hard and you can’t breathe. In many cases, panic attacks strike suddenly, without any warning. Often, there is no clear reason why the attack occurred. In fact, this paralyzing wave of panic can occur when you are relaxing or sleeping at night.
Panic attacks may only occur once in a lifetime, but many people have to live their lives with the fear that panic attacks will suddenly come again. Repeated attacks are generally triggered by a specific situation, such as crossing the street or speaking in public – especially if the situation has caused a previous attack, or if the person has a phobia about the situation that triggers his panic attack. Typically, a situation that triggers panic is one of those conditions where you feel threatened and cannot escape.
Let’s learn ways on helping someone with a panic attack from the review below.
What are the signs and symptoms of panic attacks?
Someone who has a panic attack may believe that they have a heart attack or become crazy, even dying. The fear and terror experienced by that person, when viewed from the eyes of others who see it, is not comparable to the situation that actually happened, and may not be at all related to what is happening around him.
Most people who have panic attacks can show the following symptoms:
- Shortness of breath or shallow breathing and hurry
- Heart palpitations (hard palpitations)
- Chest pain, or chest discomfort
- Shaking or shivering
- Feelings of suffocation or choking
- Feeling separate from reality and the environment
- Sweating or chilling hot
- Nausea or stomach ache
- Dizzy, dizzy head, or fainting
- Numbness or tingling sensation in the arms and fingers
- Hot or cold flashes (sudden increase/decrease in body temperature, in the chest area and around the face)
- Fear of death, loss of control of the body, or going crazy
Panic attacks are generally brief, lasting less than 10 minutes, although some symptoms can last a long time. People who have had one panic attack have a greater risk of having a subsequent attack than those who have never experienced a similar attack before.
Most of the symptoms of panic attacks are physical characteristics, and often these symptoms appear so severe that others around him think that he is having a heart attack. In fact, many people who repeatedly visit a doctor or emergency room in an effort to get treatment for what they think is a critical condition that is life-threatening, when in fact panic attacks. Although it is important to continue eliminating the possible medical causes of symptoms such as palpitations or difficulty breathing, often panic attacks are ignored as potential causes.
What to do when helping people who have panic attacks?
If you are with someone who is having a panic attack, he may become very anxious and anxious, and cannot think clearly. It can be daunting for you to watch episodes of panic attacks, but you can help by doing the following:
- Remain calm and accompany the person during his panic attack. Fighting an attack can make it worse.
- If you are in a crowd, bring it to a quiet place.
- Don’t assume what he needs, for example, “Do you need some water? Do you need to take medicines? Do you want to sit down? ” It is better to ask directly, “Tell me what you need!”
- If he has medicine to deal with his panic attacks, offer immediately.
- Talk to him in short and simple sentences.
- Avoid any disturbance that is surprising or busy.
- Guide the person to stay focused by asking him to do simple repetitive activities, such as raising his hands above his head.
- Guide him to re-regulate his breathing, by encouraging him to breathe slowly.
Sometimes, saying the right thing can help the victim get through the attack well. When talking to that person, you might want to offer supportive words. Tell him that this attack will pass soon, or that you feel proud of them for successfully passing this ordeal – can be very helpful. Or, you can calm him down by saying that you understand his panic attacks are very frightening, but that does not endanger him.
By following the simple guidelines above, you can:
- Reduce the stress level of the person, as well as yourself
- Prevents the situation from getting worse
- Helps to restore some control to the person in a horrendous situation
What if I have a panic attack myself?
When yourself is having a panic attack, try to find out what makes you panic and challenge the fear. You can achieve this by constantly reminding yourself that what you fear is not real and will pass quickly.
Many things can cover your mind during a panic attack – for example, think about death or disaster. Divert these negative thoughts by concentrating on positive imagination. Think of a place or situation that makes you feel peaceful and at ease and relaxed. After you have projected that picture in your mind, try to focus your attention on the imagination. This trick can help you divert your mind from situations that trigger panic and alleviate your symptoms.
However, sometimes positive thinking can be a challenge, especially if you have been used to thinking negatively for a long time. Creative visualization is a technique that requires practice, but you may gradually see a positive change in the way you think about yourself and others.
What happens if the panic attack is left alone?
If left untreated, panic attacks can cause other psychological problems, such as anxiety disorders, and can even cause you to withdraw from normal activities. Panic attacks are treatable conditions, usually with a self-help strategy or a series of therapy sessions, such as cognitive behavioral therapy.
Medication can be used to temporarily control or reduce some symptoms of panic attacks. However, drugs cannot treat or overcome the root of the problem. Drug use can be beneficial in severe cases, but it should not be the only way out of treatment. The use of drugs will be most effective when combined with other treatments, such as therapy and lifestyle changes, which target the cause of the panic attack.
So, that was our review about helping someone with a panic attack. Hope this article is useful to you.
Stay safe, happy, and healthy! 🙂
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