What You Can Do About Anxiety Attacks

You are scared and you cannot catch your breath. You feel helpless. This is what an Anxiety Attack feels like.

What is an Anxiety Attack?

An Anxiety Attack is the sudden onset of overwhelming Anxiety and fear that triggers severe physical reactions when there is no real danger or apparent cause. These episodes manifest differently for different people and can occur during a calm or anxious state. They can take place frequently, and unexpectedly and are not related to any external threat. You may experience one or more attacks, yet be otherwise perfectly happy and healthy.

Although Anxiety Attacks themselves aren’t life-threatening, they can be frightening and significantly affect your quality of life.

Common Symptoms and Signs

The physical signs differ from person to person. In severe cases, sufferers may feel as though they are choking or are about to faint. Symptoms develop abruptly and usually reach their peak within 10 minutes, but they rarely last for more than an hour, most ending within 20 to 30 minutes.

An episode can include:
• Heart palpitations
• Dizziness/light-headedness
• Nausea
• Tingling
• Breathlessness or shortness of breath
• Chest pains/heaviness in the chest
• Tight chest
• Feelings of suffocation
• Chills or heat sensations
• Shivering/trembling/twitching muscles
• Vision disturbances
• Terror
• Feelings of unreality or being detached from oneself
• Fear of dying
• Fear of losing control

If a person experiences recurring Anxiety Attacks, they should see a psychologist.

What are the Causes of Anxiety Attacks?

It is twice as common in women as it is in men and the average onset of an attack is during the early 20s for women and 40s for men.  The causes are not always known, but the following factors can play a role:

• Certain medications
• Genetics
• Acute Stress
• The tendency to be sensitive to stress and prone to negative emotions
• Changes in the way parts of your brain functions
• Trauma of some kind
• The use or withdrawal of addictive substances

Panic is not brought on by a recognisable incident or threat, these attacks are usually a manifestation of an anxious mind or constant worry as a result of excessive stress or other negative life conditions.

Can Anxiety Attacks be Treated?

Panic attacks can be gotten under control. There are some over-the-counter remedies people use, but most cases need treatment with medication and a psychologist. Unfortunately, many people do not seek help for Anxiety Attacks, which can lead to an increase in episodes.

It is recommended to do the following to find relief during an attack:
• Breath in deeply through your nose and slowly through your mouth
• Concentrate on your breathing
• As you focus on your breathing, you should feel yourself calming down. Continue for as long as you feel it is needed.

Here are Some Additional Self-Help Tips To Help Prevent Anxiety Attacks:

• Learn about panic and anxiety. Knowing more about panic attacks can help towards relieving your distress.
• Avoid smoking, alcohol, and caffeine. These can provoke panic attacks in people who are susceptible.
• Connect face-to-face with friends and family. Symptoms can become worse when you feel isolated, so reach out to people who care about you on a regular basis.
• Exercise regularly. This is a natural reliever so try to get moving for at least 30 minutes on most days.
• Get enough restful sleep. Poor sleep can make anxiety worse, so try to get seven to nine hours of restful sleep a night.