Panic Attacks and what to do about them

What is a panic attack

A panic attack is an extreme state of anxiety. 

What does an attack it feel like

Panic attacks can include a range or symptoms from raised heartbeat, sweating, rapid breathing and breathlessness, sweating, dizziness and nausea.  The feeling can be very frightening and often the sufferer feels as if they are going to have a heart attack or die and that something is very wrong with you.  Panic attacks can last only a few minutes or can last for up to half an hour.  

What causes them

Panic attacks can have many causes. Often you may not be aware of the exact reason it starts. As it is a form of anxiety the cause is usually whatever is making you anxious at the time.  Anxiety is our bodies natural response to stress.  Stress automatically triggers the fight or flight response in our bodies which is why we feel how we do. And as we cannot usually respond by either fighting or running away this feeling is intensified.  But it will pass. 

How to stop them

The main thing to realise about panic attacks is that you are not in danger.  You are not going to die neither are you going mad. 

The best thing to do when you are having a panic attack is to go with it.  When you try to stop the feeling it can often make it worse and last longer.

If you are with someone else, it can be helpful to get them to reassure you that you will be ok and that you it is anxiety that is making you feel how you do.

Can you prevent them?

Panic Attacks HypnotherapyPractice this breathing exercise. When you feel anxious take a deep breath in through your nose.  Hold that breath for a count of 4 and then release it from your mouth.

Find out what is causing the stress.  You will never be able to remove all the stress from your life. After all, a little bit of stress can be a good motivator.  But if a certain area of your life is causing excessive stress then it can be helpful to identify this and see what you can do to reduce that stress.

Familiarise yourself with the symptoms.  This way when you start to feel an attack coming on you can say to yourself. “I’m ok, it’s only a panic attack and I know what to do.”  This way you will not get so anxious.

Read up about panic attacks. The more you know about what is happening to you the easier it is to understand what your body is going through and why it might be happening. Also, seeing that other people also suffer from panic attacks and that they are quite common helps you feel you are not alone.

Hypnotherapy can also help prevent panic attacks as well as providing you with methods of dealing with the attacks when they happen.

How hypnotherapy can help panic attacks

Hypnotherapy is a very good method of treating anxiety. Your therapist will teach you coping mechanisms and ways of helping to prevent and minimise the feelings of helplessness. Treatment takes between 4 and 6 sessions and usually involves some NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming) and CBT (Cognitive Behaviour Therapy) as well as teaching you self-hypnosis so you can help yourself when at home.

If you find that panic attacks are affecting your life please phone me on 0770 235 2363 or 01275 873362 for an informal chat and for more information on how I can help you. I am based in the Clevedon area and also offer some home visits.

I will aim to get back to you within 24 hours on working days.

*Disclaimer.  Results cannot be guaranteed as this is a therapy and each person is unique. All I can promise is that I will do my best to help you.

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