Surviving a panic attack

I won’t try to list all the symptoms or giving you the definition of a panic attack or investigating the biology behind, there are way more qualified people for that. Instead, I’ll tell you what I know by experience, and it goes like this: having a panic attack is a fucking terrible thing! It’s something you can’t really explain, from one moment to the other you start losing both your physical and mental existence. You can’t control yourself or anything around you, you are just not yourself anymore. It’s so bad that you are dying to get out of it, but while you are trying, it’s taking more and more of yourself away from you.

It gets difficult to breath, so you are terrified you’d choke. You feel you cannot move your muscles, so you are terrified you got paralyzed. You have no idea what’s happening to your body and your mind, so you are terrified you’ve gone crazy… the whole thing is about being terrified and wanting to get out but not knowing how.

When this happens, it will be bad, no matter what. However, the good news is that there are ways to make panic attacks appear less frequently, or when they do, make them less horrible.

Due to having lived with agoraphobia, panic attacks happen to me quite often, so I’ve had my chances to learn how to deal with them. Unfortunately I cannot say I mastered the panic-know-how to a point I made them disappear forever, but I can say that now panic attacks don’t happen to me randomly anymore, only in situations connected to agoraphobia. Also, when they happen, they are way less bad than they used to be.

Here are the techniques which turned out to be helpful to me, try them if you need guidance for the bad moments. The effect of these techniques vary from person to person, so in case you experience that some of them are not useful for you, then forget about them, take only the helpful ones with you… and survive!

To do’s when you panic

Take it easy
Breath, breeath, breeeath...
Move
Back to reality
Distract yourself
Self-talk
Realize what’s real and what’s created only by your mind

Still alive? Cool, you made it! See, panic doesn’t last forever, plus now you have some useful techniques to make you more powerful when life gets rough.

Panic might challenge you, but it won’t kill you. My existence is the proof of it.

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