If you’ve ever felt the overwhelming anxiety panic attacks can bring, then you know just how debilitating a panic disorder can be. You’re visiting the mall, or taking in a sporting event, a when you start having feelings of pure stress – your chest tightens, your heart rate increases, your breathing quickens – and you know you have to escape – now! For some people, even going to the grocery can be a frightening prospect – they never know when those overwhelming feelings of panic will set in. Fortunately, there are several safe, effective ways to deal with the anxiety panic attacks can bring. You will want to experiment with these methods to find the ones that work the best for you. Often, you will need to use several methods in conjunction to get a handle on your feelings of panic – but once you have found the right combination, you can all but eliminate the anxiety.
First, take a look at your lifestyle. If you use caffeine, take steps to reduce or eliminate it from your life. Coffee, sodas, tea, and stimulant pills all contain a large amount of caffeine – this can worsen the anxiety panic attacks bring. Likewise, tobacco can make you more irritable and anxious – nicotine and other chemicals in tobacco increase your blood pressure, raise your heart rate, and leave you with a general sense of irritability.Alcohol can also play a major role in panic attacks. Although many people with panic disorders use alcohol as a means to calm themselves, the stress that alcohol places on the body can make the situation even worse.A proper diet will also help decrease the anxiety panic attacks can bring. Eliminate sugar, junk foods, processed frozen meals, and fast foods that force your body to run on empty. Instead, focus on meals that contain fresh fruits and vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains. While you’re at it, decrease your sodium intake as much as possible – this can also help reduce anxiety and stress.Meditation is an excellent tool for combating stress and anxiety. Although it can be a bit difficult to get the hand of meditation at first, continued practice will bring substantial benefits. Your mind will be calmer and more focused, and will react less quickly to stressful situations. Also, meditation lowers the heart rate and decreases muscle tension, so you will feel better physically, too.
If you have trouble sitting still long enough to reap the benefits of meditation, try yoga or Tai Chi instead – these are essentially forms of moving meditation. Not only will you reduce the anxiety panic attacks can bring, you will receive added benefits from the physical activity as well.
Finally, make sure you get sufficient exercise. It can be difficult to motivate yourself to exercise when you’re dealing with feelings of panic, but this technique will go a long way toward eliminating the anxiety panic attacks bring. Exercise releases chemicals in the brain that promote positive thought and a general sense of calmness – the effect of these chemicals lasts long after your exercise session has ended. Engaging in physical activity will also reduce tension in your joints and muscles, which helps to combat anxiety.