A gripping panic attack can make you feel like you’re suffocating. The grip it has on you can make you believe for a moment you’re dying and that the world is crashing around you. But you don’t have to allow those panic attacks to control you. When you become overcome with panic, the goal is to calm yourself.
This does mean you need to take a course of action. More often than not, just winging it will cause your panic attack to escalate, rather than to improve the symptoms. When we react to the panic and do something, we are giving into it and allowing it to dominate us. In some cases, medication may be recommended by your doctor or pharmacist to get you to a point where you are able to function normally.
The first thing you’ll want to do is to acknowledge you are having a panic attack. Remind yourself that while you are afraid, there is no danger to you. It’s just the panic attack you’re going through, and you need to accept that the symptoms you are experiencing are part of that. Then think about the symptoms and why are they there. If someone is holding a gun to your head, the panic attack is justified, as you are fighting to survive. But if the panic attack is over something like getting pulled over, it’s a part of life. The latter doesn’t include danger of any kind.
In the moment, you realize there is no danger to you, close your eyes and clear your mind. Don’t do anything as a reaction to the panic attack. Realize that this breaks the cycle and allows you to return to the moment and what you’re doing. As you routinely experience panic attacks, watch to see what triggers them or causes them to occur more frequently.
If watching the news upsets you, simply turn it off. You have the power to control the triggers in your life. When you discover these triggers, choose life over the elements that are overwhelming you. When it all becomes too much, you can also write it down. Have a panic journey where you fill the pages with your stress and worries. When it is full, burn them and let the troubles you face drift away with the smoke.
What works for you to stop these panics attacks will be unique to you. While you may need medication, there is also a chance that deep breathing, calming sounds, or other techniques will work better for you. Once you find out the solution that works for you, build off that. You have everything within your grasp to help combat panic attacks and to cope with them in the moment they happen.