Coping With Panic Attacks
If you live with panic attacks, you know just how profoundly they can affect
your entire life. If your panic attacks are severe enough, they might even keep you from leaving the house
unless absolutely necessary. The good news is, though, there are effective methods of coping with panic
attacks, without visiting a doctor.
The first, and perhaps most important, step is to understand that panic attacks are not your fault.
There is nothing intrinsically wrong with you, and you certainly aren’t crazy. You simply have a condition to deal
with, just like any other medical or psychological condition.
Removing the self blame will actually serve to lessen the impact of panic attacks, because you
won’t be worried about being worried.
There are several other techniques you can use for coping with panic
attacks. For many, meditation is a powerful technique, because it allows your mind to clear of stressful and
negative thoughts that can provoke panic attacks. There is no need to worry that you have to be a “guru” to
meditate effectively – with a bit of practice, anyone can use meditation to reduce stress and tension.
One of the simplest ways to harness the power of meditation is to focus on your breathing. Simply
settle into a comfortable position, and allow your mind to focus on your breath. As you inhale, imagine drawing in
calm, tranquil energy. As you breathe out, imagine letting go of stress, negative beliefs, and worries.
You don’t have to spend hours every day on this exercise – five to ten minutes is sufficient.
Still, the calming effects of breathing meditation will last all day long.
Another important technique for coping with panic attacks is to stay away
from alcohol, tobacco, and caffeine. Although many people use alcohol and cigarettes as a means to deal with
panic attacks, it only makes the condition worse.
Alcohol simply masks the symptoms of panic attacks, keeping you from addressing the root causes.
It’s also essentially a poison, so you are adding stress to your body – instead of rebuilding muscle tissue and
replacing cells, your body is forced to focus on removing toxins.
Alcohol, tobacco, and caffeine all disrupt sleep patterns, making it difficult to get sufficient
rest. When your body and mind are tired, panic attacks become more prevalent. When you remove these things from
your life, you allow yourself to get the deep, healing sleep you
need – and this can reduce your feelings of anxiety.
Physical exercise is another strategy for coping with panic attacks. When you exercise, your body
releases chemicals that promote a tranquil mental state. Physical exercise also releases the physical tension that
will make your panic attacks worse.
If you’re not up for strenuous exercise, or you shudder at the thought of going to a
gym, try doing yoga in your living room, or take a brisk walk every day. Both of these activities are low impact, so they won’t wear you out, but they will serve to reduce the effects of your panic attacks.