Pushing myself to the limits of my endurance, finances, and emotional ends sometimes sets me up to more likely have an anxiety attack.
PTSD Breaks the Silence posted some awesome suggestions. Click on the name below to go to their web page if you have Facebok
PTSD and Panic Attacks – Overview and 8 ways to cope with them
Panic attack may happen when something reminds you of your trauma.
During a panic attack, you may be afraid of dying or afraid of losing control of yourself. It may seem like things happening around you aren’t real. An attack usually lasts from 5 to 20 minutes but may last even longer, up to a few hours. You have the most anxiety about 10 minutes after the attack starts.
You may have physical symptoms, including:
Dryness of mouth
Inability to comprehend the situation
Flashes that alternate between hot and cold
A fast or pounding heartbeat.
Dizziness, shaking, or trembling.
Stomach pain or nausea.
Chills or hot flashes.
Feeling like you’re choking.
If you’ve had more than one panic attack, or if you feel worried about the next time a panic attack will happen, then you may have panic disorder. Worrying about future panic attacks can cause stress and interfere with your life. You may try to avoid things that bring back memories of your traumatic event.
Panic Attacks – 8 Ways to cope with them
If you are in the middle of an attack try to remember and recognize that you’re having a panic attack. You’re not really in any danger. You’re not losing your mind.
Here are some steps to take to control and end your panic attack:
1. Take deep breaths
2. Rub your temples in a circular motion
3. Drinking a glass of chilled water can actually help you get your nerves in order.
4. Force yourself to get your mind involved in a funny television show.
5. If you can’t sit for obvious reasons stand up and watch it and pace around or walk or jog in place until your mind eases.
6. Rational thinking – All kind of negative thoughts pass through your head when you experience a panic attack. These thoughts are unfounded. It can help to shout STOP!!! inside your head to stop your negative thoughts in their tracks.
7. Breathe into a paper bag. This trick really does work. The carbon dioxide helps to slow your breathing down and makes you feel calmer.
8. And my favorite tip, this trick helps me to prevent an attack if I feel one coming (especially helps me on the plane) and if I do have an attack, it ends it sooner. Do Math! Really. Try to get your mind onto something that makes you concentrate. I will start to write out our bills or do them in my head, or I will do multiplication tables in my head, 8×12= 96 and so on. It really helps because I am not focused on the attack but something that I really have to think about. Or, if you are not a fan of math, count backwards from 100 by 3s. Ex. 100, 97, 94, 91, 88, etc.
If your attacks start to be more often consider seeking help. Whatever the reason for your panic attacks, there’s no shame in getting help from a medical doctor or a psychotherapist. Often, it only takes a few therapy sessions to get relief from panic attacks. Or you can get prescribed some anti-anxiety medication to help.
I’ve used all of these plus drawing, coloring, photography, writing, video games or any activity that redirects my mind.
Another person shared this tip also known as grounding:
What helped me most was 5-4-3-2-1.
I found it while googling in a panic to calm down immediately. What you do is name:
5 things you can see,
4 things you can touch and also a word description (arm-warm, table-hard, hair-soft, shirt-smooth, for example),
3 things you can hear,
2 things you can smell, and
1 thing you can taste.
You can do it again if you’re not sufficiently calm yet. It seems to bring me back to the here and now in an oddly satisfying way. I put two scents on, one on each arm, in the morning, just in case I needed them when I was having lots of anxiety attacks.
I wish I could say that after counseling my panic attacks quit. That wasn’t how it worked for me. I had more tools and techniques on how to help myself through them. It also helps to reach out to another person that you trust. My darling husband, my sister, a few friends are on my short list of go to people that can help me talk through my anxiety.