A panic attack is an unexpected feeling of great anxiety and fear. They can occur at random or if a person is exposed to “events” that may trigger a panic attack. The symptoms of a panic attack are usually a combination of physiological and psychological in nature. The attacks may begin with a sudden feeling of anxiety, fear, or panic and are followed by physical symptoms such as heart palpitations, sweating, nausea, trembling, shortness of breath, choking, and numerous other physical reactions.
The panic attacks usually last between 5 to 20 minutes. Many people confuse panic attacks with heart diseases or breathing issues. Many individuals claim to feel that they are about to die during a panic attack however most cases of panic attacks are harmless once the symptoms pass. However, you should seek medical attention if you regularly have panic attacks or you still feel unwell with a rapid heartbeat or pain in the chest after your breathing returns to normal.
Causes of panic attacks
Panic attacks are either – situational or unexpected. The situational panic attacks are triggered by a specific scenario such as someone with the fear of speaking in front of an audience will have a panic attack before he or she has to go in front of the public to give a speech. Those with situational panic attacks can remove themselves from the unwanted situation and bring their anxiety to an end. On the other hand, unexpected panic attacks happen spontaneously and many times the individual has a difficult time understanding why the panic attack has occurred. Panic attacks are also triggered by major life transitions such as graduating from college, marriage, having a baby, losing a job, losing a loved one, divorce, or a variety of other life situations.
How to stop panic attacks?
Panic attacks are treatable and can be avoided using various treatment methods such as:
- Medications: anti-depressants and anti-anxiety drugs can be used and are effective in treating symptoms of panic attacks for some people, naturally it is always in your best interests in the long term to find a natural solution, however sometimes you may need a short or even long term medical solution initially.
- Limiting the intake of caffeine, alcohol, and smoking is always beneficial, as they can tend to make a panic attack worse.
- Learning to control breathing: Deep breathing can relieve the symptoms of panic attacks and can help the individual in calming down when they begin to feel anxious.
- Practice methods of relaxation: Regular practice of yoga, meditation, and other methods of relaxation help the body relax and can increase the feelings of happiness and joy.
- CBT (cognitive behavioural therapy): A type of psychotherapy which involves teaching the individual certain techniques which helps in changing thinking patterns and behaviours.
Hypnotherapy for panic attacks:
Hypnotherapy is used to manage a variety of health issues including stress, weigh issues, pain, addiction, sleep disorders and smoking along with many other issues. It has also been proven to be effective when dealing with anxiety, fear, and stress.
A hypnotherapist guides the clients by helping the clients relax and go in to an altered state of consciousness. The therapist asks the client to focus on the physical sensation, emotions, and cognitions that they feel during a panic attack. The hypnotherapist may also offer calming phrases such as “you feel safe” and “notice, you are in control of this attack”. They also suggest ways to calm down such as “slowing your breathing will help you keep calm.”
The hypnotherapy sessions are aimed to provide the clients with suggestions when they are in their altered consciousness state that may help them cope better when they are in their conscious state. Hypnotherapy is also valuable in teaching the clients relaxation techniques which helps lower the risk of them having panic attacks.
Hypnotherapy might not be effective for everyone however it is a natural procedure, that many people find beneficial. Some people find it the best treatment for their condition while others use it in conjunction with other treatments. Consult your doctor for the various treatment methods including hypnotherapy that will help you avoid and manage your panic attacks.