Panic attacks can be difficult to endure when you’re feeling overwhelmed. For many people, panic attacks can occur suddenly and without notice. If you want to stop a panic attack and prevent it from escalating, there are a few steps you can take.
Control Your Breathing
Breathing in deeply can allow you avoid hyperventilating during a panic attack. Controlling your breathing will send a message to your brain that you aren’t in danger, and taking slow, deep breaths will help to lower your heart rate. Practicing diaphragmatic breathing will also decrease the rate at which you’re breathing and help you avoid becoming short of breath and lightheaded.
Mindfulness can allow you to control your emotions and can reduce the anxiety that you experience by changing your perspective. Make it a point to focus on all of your senses and describe everything in detail either in your head or aloud. List a few things that you can smell or see and touch a few textures around you. By focusing on different sensory details, you will effectively distract yourself from the source of your anxiety while also grounding yourself in reality.
Picture Your Happy Place
When you begin to feel stressed, practice envisioning your happy place, which can be anywhere from a secluded island or the middle of the woods. The vision should offer you peace and allow you to feel calm. Taking yourself out of your current situation can make it easier to calm your nerves and have distance from your thoughts. Think about what your happy place might be when you are in a calm state so you have an image prepared.
Lavender is an essential oil that is useful for alleviating stress and should be kept on hand both at home and in the office. By applying the oil on your hands, forearms, and temples, you can make your body relax and possibly prevent a panic attack before it starts. Breathing in the scent can also alleviate tension while taking a break from your emotions.
Remind Yourself the Situation is Temporary
Controlling your thoughts can be powerful. By reminding yourself that the situation is temporary, you acknowledge that this panic and anxiety will eventually pass. Understanding that the circumstances aren’t permanent can make it easier to change your perspective and avoid feeling overwhelmed with issues that you face in life.
Though you may feel overwhelmed by anxiety when a panic attack strikes, being mindful of your condition is among the first steps you can take to prevent the attack from escalating.