Category Archive Panic Attacks

ByAnxious Minds

My introduction to panic attacks

I wish someone had told me what it was like before I had my first panic attack. And I wish someone had told me that the anxiety I had struggled with before could actually get much worse. Just like you, I am an anxious mind.

I was out eating dinner with some friends when I had my first real panic attack. I had spent the whole day at work and was eating some Indian food out in the warm summer air. We were all chatting and hanging out, relaxing after a tiring day. I knew these people quite well, and I knew this restaurant too, so nothing was really new to me. It was just what I was used to on a regular week night.

At some point during dinner though, I started to feel like I was getting sick. My stomach suddenly felt like it had been turned upside down, and I felt very nauseous. I was also getting quite hot, and started sweating. I put that on the slightly spicy food. I can’t really take spicy food, and it always makes me feel a little bit uncomfortable, but this one surely wasn’t strong enough to cause such problems. My breathing got faster.

In seconds, I had trouble breathing. It felt like not enough air was coming through my lungs, so I kept trying to get more. As I thought I was controlling my oxygen intake, I only felt sicker. I started feeling a weird sensation within me, like a rush of adrenaline going from my gut to my face. I thought I was about to pass out. I got up and went to the bathroom.

Locked inside the small cubicle, I started to feel better. I put my sudden uneasiness on the account of the food. I came back to my normal state of mind and decided it was time to go back to the table. However, as soon as I sat down, the heavy breathing and the rush of adrenaline were back. I was quite ashamed, but I had no other choice than to tell my friends I wasn’t feeling very well and I wanted to go back home. I had barely eaten but it didn’t matter, all I was thinking about was to get out of this place.

My apartment was located less than 5 minutes away from the restaurant, walking. One of my friends was living in the same direction, so we started to make our way towards it. After a few steps, I couldn’t walk anymore. Again, I felt like I was about to pass out. I was overwhelmed by everything around me. I wanted to get home, but it felt so far away in my mind. I was picturing the way I had to walk through, and it seemed like an impossible mountain to climb.

I went inside a mall to get some air conditioning. I sat down and the freshness of the air made me feel better. The adrenaline rush eased out. But I was stuck there. I couldn’t walk any more. I couldn’t stand up. I was petrified. At that point, my friend decided to take me back home with a cab. The five minutes we had to wait outside for it felt like an eternity.

For weeks, I still believed that what happened that evening had been caused by some sort of food poisoning. I didn’t realize for even second that food poisoning couldn’t feel that way. I didn’t realize it was panic. This panic that was just about to ground me for months.

ByAnxious Minds

Taking Control of Anxiety Attacks

Anyone who has ever experienced anxiety attacks can attest that the condition can be very debilitating. Shortness of breath, palpitations, numbness, nausea, and the feeling of being trapped are all part and parcel of having an anxiety attack. Fortunately, there are ways of preventing an attack, foremost of which is identifying its cause.

What causes an anxiety attack?

An anxiety attack can be triggered by a number of reasons including illness, social events, or even memories of past situations. It is very important to know which situations trigger your attacks so you can take precautions to make them more manageable. For example, if going to social events like corporate parties triggers an attack, bring a friend with you to help you feel comfortable about the situation. Most importantly, consult your doctor for medications or therapies that can help minimize your anxiety.

Preventing an anxiety attack

There are several methods you can use or activities you can do to minimize your attacks or prevent them from happening like the following:

– Changing your diet

People who have switched to a more vegetable-dense or whole grain-based diet reportedly feel better than those who consume red meat. Scientific research shows that aside from keeping the body healthy, vegetables and whole grains release endorphins and other feel-good hormones in the body that promote a sense of well-being. On the other hand, people who eat red meat have been found to have a lot of stress-inducing hormones in their bodies that can trigger an attack.

– Avoiding caffeine-rich and alcoholic substances

Caffeine and alcohol can increase the chances of attacks as well as certain drugs. Instead of taking coffee or alcoholic beverages for a quick pick-me-up, try substituting them with fresh fruit juice. Juices are healthy options that can give you a quick energy boost like caffeine without the danger of triggering an attack.

– Exercising regularly

Exercise and physical activity trigger the release of endorphins in the body which promotes a feeling of happiness. Aside from this benefit, exercise, particularly cardiovascular activities, also prevent attacks by providing an outlet for the release of stress and anxiety. Cardiovascular exercises also strengthen the heart and body so it can withstand attacks easily with minimal symptoms.

– Practising relaxation methods

Certain activities like meditation, yoga, aromatherapy, and massages can reduce anxiety and stress levels in the body. They can also help you focus on good sensations and feelings that can improve your sense of well-being. You can try carrying relaxing aromatherapy oils like lavender and chamomile for a calming sniff when you feel an attack coming. Listening to soothing music, reading inspirational books, or drinking herbal teas can also soothe your frazzled nerves.

Although these prevention tips can help you ward off an anxiety attack, nothing beats talking to your doctor. A health professional specializing in anxiety disorders can help you understand your condition and provide you with treatment therapy. Along with the prescribed medication, you can also ask your doctor about group therapy for anxiety disorder

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How to Recognise Anxiety Attack Symptoms

You can easily begin to recognise the causes of your anxiety symptoms. If you have ever experienced being uncomfortable and feeling that something just isn’t right when it comes to your breathing or the way your body seems to be failing you, it is entirely possible you could have been experiencing an anxiety attack symptom. Let’s take a look at some of the symptoms that usually come with anxiety attacks.

One of the more common of an anxiety attack symptom is a pounding heart. This symptom can be caused by a number of different anxiety attacks, from mild to severe. Many people who do have an attack tend to clutch at their chest in fear of a heart attack or other ailment when in reality they are experiencing anxiety.

Shortness of breath is another anxiety attack symptom that is seen a lot because of someone feeling panicked due to other symptoms they are experiencing. The shortness of breath can seem like your world is caving in, but by being able to recognize the symptom as part of an anxiety attack, you can more easily control this.

Becoming lightheaded is one anxiety attack symptom that happens a lot in crowded areas. Many people have a phobia about being in crowds and becoming lightheaded or fainting is a common symptom that they experience. People will sometimes think they have a more serious issue, but it reality it’s only one of the symptoms that are associated with anxiety attacks.

Another anxiety attack symptom that is almost always present in an attack is the fear of losing control. This fear comes from the seemingly uncontrollable symptoms that precede like becoming light-headed with a racing heart, and shortness of breath. It is a natural feeling for us to feel as if we are losing control of our own bodies.

Anxiety attack symptoms vary and are not isolated to just one group of people. Everybody is different and may experience varying symptoms based on what their fears may be. Anxiety is a treatable problem and many people live normal lives once they learn to control their attacks. In the end, by visiting a physician to talk about the anxiety attack symptoms that bother you, a plan can be put in place as to how you can effectively overcome the symptoms as they occur, making it possible to ensure anxiety attacks do not have precedence over your life.

As these may be some of the most common symptoms I always recommend that you see your doctor. Your doctor will make sure and confirm your symptoms. Once you have done that you can begin to find techniques and methods to eliminate your anxiety attacks.

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Searching for a Sign of Anxiety Attacks

Searching for a sign of anxiety attacks is kind of looking for a needle in a haystack. The thing it is not quite as concrete. At least with the needle, once you’ve found it you know that it’s a needle; it feels like a needle, it looks like a needle, and it likely is a needle. With a of anxiety attacks, it could just as likely be a symptom to a great misdiagnosed problem as it could be a sign of anxiety attacks. Seeking good professional help is the most important key to solving this mystery.

Fear is your body’s natural reaction to a lot of outside stimuli. It is normal for the body to react in such a way as to become anxious or fearful because this often protected our ancestors from a lot of problems and harm. It is not normal, however, for our bodies to be overtaken with fear to the point that physical symptoms begin to arise because of it. When this happens, it is usually the sign of a larger problem.

There are many common types of anxiety: fear, panic, worry, dread, obsession, and compulsion are just a few. Clearly, anxiety comes in a variety of forms and is not only represented by fear. It is also quite common. Most people experience anxiety in some form, experiencing it before or after stressful situations like a traumatic event or an important meeting with the boss of your company. Other times the anxiety comes quickly and without warning and for no reason at all.

Anxiety can Affect your Relationships

An anxiety disorder is a more disabling feeling of anxiety that actually is constant and consuming. Anxiety disorder causes people to completely withdraw emotionally and often physically from their family and friends. It can cause people to withdraw indoors and avoid social activities for reasons involving fear. An anxiety attack, conversely, is an unexpected episode that usually involves fear as oppose to an overwhelming feeling.

A sign of anxiety attacks can be anything from irregular heartbeats to chest pain. They also include: shaking, twitching, trembling, hot flashes, chills, “rubber legs”, tingling in extremities, difficulty sleeping, unpredictable sleeping patterns, body tension, aches and pains, sweating, clamminess, and stomach problems such as nausea or “butterflies”.

There are also emotional signs including: fearfulness, a feeling of terror, insecurity, incredible self-consciousness, irritability, apprehension, dread, a desire to escape, a feeling you are going to perish, and other frightening emotions. These emotions are sometimes very hard to deal with. It is always recommended that you discuss your findings and experience with your doctor. Your doctor can direct you in the right direction for getting help and ending your anxiety.

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ByAnxious Minds

Panic Disorders: Are they Real?

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard of people having a panic attack and someone saying that they just wanted attention. Nothing could be farther from the truth. While a panic attack is not the same as some traditional medical conditions, it is both a mental and physical disorder that must be taken very seriously. If you suffer from panic attacks, see a doctor immediately to get your condition under control.

As classified by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), panic disorders are technically under the umbrella of anxiety disorders. Other anxiety disorders include social phobia, post-traumatic stress disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and agoraphobia, among other conditions. Over 10 million people in the United Kingdom alone suffer some kind of anxiety disorder or another.

Panic disorder is characterised by reoccurring panic attacks that often happen spontaneously and unexpectedly. A panic attack is an intense feeling of irrational fear that lasts over a period of time. Some symptoms of a panic attack may or may not include a pounding heart, chest pains, sweating, difficulty breathing, the fear of going crazy, shaking, cold or hot flashed, the choking sensation, and nausea. One panic attack does not mean you should be diagnosed with panic disorder, but if this condition occurs a number of times and interrupts your life, you should see a doctor immediately.

Most people experience the unpleasantness of a panic attack at some point or other in their lives. While this may be a scary experience, you should generally not be concerned unless the month following the panic attack leads to constant worry about have another panic attack, constant worry about a condition that could be related to the attack, or major changes in your lifestyle.

When you have a panic attack, even for the first time, see a doctor. Try to clearly think about the symptoms you’ve experienced and note the time and length of the attack. This information will help your doctor find the best treatment options available for you. Often, panic attacks occur simultaneously with other anxiety disorders, so being clear about your experiences will help your doctor to understand your experiences.

Remember, panic attacks are real. While there may be a few cases where people pretend to have attacks to get attention or for other reasons, this is not the norm. If someone around you is experiencing a panic attack, offer your help and call a doctor immediately to get help for the person.

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ByAnxious Minds

Panic Attacks: How to Prepare

Panic Attacks: How to Prepare

If you suffer from an anxiety disorder, panic attacks may be a part of your life. Even with proper medication, many patients suffer from panic attacks. Although predicting when a panic attack will happen may be a bit tricky, you can take steps to prepare for these panic attacks in order to take back control of your life.

The first step to taking back that control is to learn to breathe. When a person has a panic attack, often they feel so overwhelmed that they forget to simply breathe properly. Many doctors, therefore, advocating safe breathing practices in order to help calm anyone having a panic attack. In fact, if you’ve ever had a panic attack in public, someone may have tried to get you to breath into a paper bag. This may or may be a good method for you, but the fact is that you should know and practice your breathing exercise before you are panicking. Have a plan—learn calming breathing techniques and practice at least twice a day.

Other relaxing practices may also be able to help your panic attack. Of course, you might find it difficult to even consider meditation when you’re having a panic attack, but by learning this relaxing procedure, you can use some of the same calming techniques that help you to meditate to help you calm down.

Another great way to prepare for a panic attack is to simply know your triggers. Do you have a specific phobia? Is excess stress your downfall? Do certain situations seem impossible for you? When you know what triggers panic reactions, you can do your best to avoid or minimise these situations.

You should also be medically prepared for a panic attack. When you go outside of the home, take with you a list of emergency contacts, which should include your doctor’s number, your local crisis hotline, and members of your personal support systems. You can use these phone numbers yourself if you feel a panic attack starting, or another person will easily find this information in your purse or wallet if you are not capable of helping yourself.

Also take with you a bag to help you feel comfortable and calm down during a panic attack. A crucial part of the bag is any medications you may be taking, along with instructions on taking it. You can also include any items from home that will help you feel more comfortable. This can include herbal tea, a stuffed animal, religious items, photos, rubber bands to snap on your wrist, mints, hand cream, money, a puzzle book, and anything else that may help you relax, stimulated your brain, or distract yourself. Remember, comfort is key.

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ByAnxious Minds

Panic Disorders: are they real?

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard of people having a panic attack and someone saying that they just wanted attention. Nothing could be farther from the truth. While a panic attack is not the same as some traditional medical conditions, it is both a mental and physical disorder that must be taken very seriously. If you suffer from panic attacks, see a doctor immediately to get you to condition under control.

As classified by the NHS, panic disorders are technically under the umbrella of anxiety disorders. Other anxiety disorders include social phobia, post-traumatic stress disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and agoraphobia, among other conditions. 20% of the population of the UK (ONS, 2018), suffer some kind of anxiety disorder or another.

Panic disorders are characterised by reoccurring panic attacks that often happen spontaneously and unexpectedly. A panic attack is an intense feeling of irrational fear that lasts over a period of time.

Some symptoms of a panic attack include a pounding heart, chest pains, sweating, difficulty breathing, the fear of going crazy, shaking, cold or hot flushes, a choking sensation and nausea. One panic attack doe not mean you should be diagnosed with panic disorder, but if this condition occurs a number of times and interrupts your life, you should see a doctor immediately.

Most people experience the unpleasantness of a panic attack at some point or other in their lives. While this may be a scary experience, you should generally not be concerned unless the month following the panic attack leads to constant worry about having another panic attack, constant worry about a condition that could be related to the attack, or major changes in your lifestyle.

When you have a panic attack, even for the first time, see a doctor. Try to clearly think about the symptoms you’ve experienced and note the time and length of the attack. This information will help your doctor find the best treatment options available for you. Often, panic attacks occur simultaneously with other anxiety disorders, so being clear about your experiences will help your doctor to understand your experiences.

Remember, panic attacks are real. While there may be a few cases where people pretend to have attacks to get attention or for other reasons, this is not the norm. If someone around you is experiencing a panic attack, offer your help and call a doctor immediately to get help for the person.

www.anxiousminds.co.uk

ByAnxious Minds

Panic Attacks

Panic disorders are a serious health problem and are very different from other types of anxiety. Panic attacks are sudden, appear to be unprovoked, and are often disabling. If you have panic disorder, you may feel suddenly terrified for no reason. During a panic attack, you also have scary physical feelings like a fast heartbeat, trouble breathing, or dizziness. Some people believe they are having a heart attack.

Panic attacks can happen at any time and any place without warning. Many people with panic disorders develop intense anxiety between episodes. It is not unusual for a person with panic disorder to develop phobias about places or situations where panic attacks have occurred, such as in supermarkets or other everyday situations.

Panic attacks often begin when people are young adults, around 18 to 24 years old. Sometimes they start when a person is under a lot of stress, for example after the death of a loved one or after having a baby. Anyone can have panic disorder, but more women than men have the illness. It can also be a hereditary disorder.

Speaking to a specially trained doctor or counsellor who can teach you ways to cope with your panic attacks can help many people who struggle with panic disorder. Therapy will help you feel less afraid and anxious. Thanks to research, there are a variety of treatments available, including several effective medications, and also specific forms of psychotherapy. Often, a combination of psychotherapy and medications produces good results.

It is extremely important for a person suffering from panic disorder to understand that help is available. Tragically, many people with panic disorder do not seek or receive treatment. The physical toll this takes adds to the problem.

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ByAnxious Minds

Anxiety Panic Attacks

This world is no doubt a stressful place to live in. So many people spend their precious time working at jobs with long hours, raising children, paying for a house, trying to save for the future and dealing with a constant flow of bills. Yeah, when it’s put that way, life sounds a bit more stressful than most of us would like it to be.

No wonder so many individuals every year suffer from random anxiety panic attacks. All the stress they grapple with on a daily basis can certainly bring about such undesirable reactions. The key is balancing life’s issues and getting help.

How do you deal with the infinite stresses of life? One way to approach this subject so that you don’t suffer from anxiety panic attacks in the future is by taking a deep breath every once in a while. Naturally this is somewhat of a metaphor. However, there is much to be said about stopping to take a break and just clear your mind. If you are one of the millions of individuals that routinely have to grapple with anxiety panic attacks and other stress related issues, then it’s prudent to acquire assistance from a professional.

There are a few different ways to approach this topic/burden. Maybe you’d feel comfortable seeing a psychiatrist. He/she has the training and knowledge to help you deal with anxiety panic attacks. The key is pinpointing a great doctor who can truly assist you in remedying your dilemma. Start by seeking a professional out on the web. There is likely a few located in your area. A second route is physical and mental healing through massage therapy and acupuncture. This can also assist with anxiety panic attacks. The key is releasing much of the stress and angst from your body and mind, hence allowing you to relax.

Most businesses and professionals regarding anxiety panic attacks can be located online in this day and age. Therefore it’s wise to access the web and see which ones you can find in your town or city. Call several to inquire about rates, which are often left off of websites. It’s high time you got your stress levels and anxiety issues in order to improve your overall health and happiness.

ByAnxious Minds

Anatomy of an Anxiety Attack

Anatomy of an Anxiety Attack

Anxiety attacks are normal body reactions and coping mechanisms against different stressors and distressing predicaments. In other words, these are chemical, physical and emotional reactions that are elicit by fear, apprehension, or shock. These reactions also cause a fight or flight response. Based on scientific studies, people automatically react to stress or stress-inducing activities by either making a confrontational stance or making a decision to avoid the stress.

Pressure can come from an emotional problem in a relationship at home, demanding tasks and deadlines at the office, the dread of a forthcoming test, or the clamour for a game-winning performance in a championship game. All these can product constant anguish and even anxiety attacks if a person is not able to cope effectively with the stress. A person that is undergoing an anxiety attack often experiences a feeling of numbness or tingling, shortness of breath, dizziness, heightened palpitations, chronic sweating, chills, hot flushes, and nausea.

Extreme levels of anxiety can produce serious ill effects on one’s physical and mental health. Anxieties can actually a hinder or adversely affect a person’s the day-to-day activities. Aside from the possibility of leaving a person emotionally depressed and physically weak, anxiety can also cause a person lose the ability to make a rational decision. It is not uncommon to hear of cases of people with severe anxiety who have lost their jobs and failed in their relationships. For these people who have become victims of anxiety attacks, life has become a mere matter of survival — bereft of happiness, fulfilment, and health.

Some people can cope with depression and anxiety. But for a significant number of people who do not have the ability to cope with stress and anxiety, the only means to regain their life is to undergo therapy and, if necessary, take anxiety medications. These anxiety medications, if accompanied by therapy conducted by professionals, offer relief and possibly permanent protection from the debilitating effects of stress and severe emotional distress. Anxiety medications often vary in the dosage and desired effects. However, what is common among these anti-anxiety medications is the ability of these drugs to suppress unnecessary chemical and emotional surges. Controlling these chemical and emotional surges allow a person with anxiety to regain a sense of peace and tranquility.

Anxiety medications, also known as anxiolytics, are prescribed to treat the different symptoms of anxiety. For example, Bensodiazepines are prescribed to treat the short-term and disabling effects of anxiety. These drugs are take effect in a person’s central nervous system, which is the reason why a certain degree of sedation occurs in a patient using the medication.
Non-bensodiazepines, however, are used to control the serotonin level in the body. Serotonin is essential to the body for regulating anger, temperature, mood, sleep, vomiting, sexuality, and appetite. Though they are proven to be less effective than bensodiazepines, the serotonin-regulating effect of this type of anti-anxiety drug also helps a person to achieve a relaxed state.

While these medications offer relief, people must still practice a little caution before taking these anti-anxiety drugs. These drugs cannot totally remove all symptoms of anxiety. Of course, these medications cannot resolve an emotional or psychological problem that is actually the origin or source of a person’s anxiety attacks.

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