Panic and anxiety attacks can be terrifying. While they aren’t dangerous, it can be hard to remember that in the middle of one. Luckily, with help from a psychiatrist, it gets easier to learn the signs of one coming and how to manage them.
Lying down might seem like the best option, but instead of relaxing it can restrict breathing, making the attack worse. Try sitting down or standing up. This will allow you to take deep breaths or pace away excess energy.
There’s a reason everyone offers water when someone is panicking. Take slow small sips of cold water to help you. Focus on the cool water as you drink it. Focus on the feeling of it going down your throat; this will distract you from whatever is causing you to panic. Dehydration can heighten anxiety so make sure to stay hydrated!
Breathing may seem like a silly tip, but focusing on the breath can really help. There’s a reason this is one of the most recommended tips. Breathe in slowly for three counts, and then out for three.
Fresh air does wonders for our brains. The outside also provides a lot of sensations for you to focus on. Open the window or step outside for a few moments. Take note of the smells, sounds, and temperature.
During a panic or anxiety attack, the body creates adrenaline. Your body is stuck in a fight or flight stage. Give your body a way to express some of that extra energy. Pace the room, fidget with a toy, click a pen, or toss a ball. Do anything to channel it!
Distract is one of the best ways to pull yourself out of an attack. Tasks that require mental focus but little energy are best. Puzzles, word games, or even certain mobile games are great.