It's natural to feel anxious before important exam or when waiting for results of medical analysis. But what to do, if fear comes without any reason?
Anxiety is regulated by the part of our brain, called amygdala. If this center becomes excessively sensitive to the nerve signals, you may experience so-called panic attacks.
This trouble occurs suddenly and feels like splash of fear, accompanied by pounding heartbeats, sweating, trembling, lightheadedness and sense of detachment from reality. Sometimes it may even mimic the heart attack, causing pressure in the chest and shortness of breath.
In most cases, pattern to these overwhelming attacks remains unclear. However, in certain conditions, like claustrophobia (fear of closed spaces), attacks are triggered by exposure to the the main cause of fear.
Although panic attacks may be really terrifying for those, who experience them, they commonly last nearly 10 to 20 minutes and don't lead to serious problems. But it may be much better to learn, how to cope with panic attacks effectively and decrease their frequency.
The good news that you can do it easy, using these simple steps:
Step 1: control your breath
It's extremely important to keep under the control your breathing during the attack.
Breathe in slowly through your nose for the count of five, then hold for a second. Exhale slowly through the lips for the count of four. Make a 2-second pause and repeat once more.
Step 2: recognize your condition
Say to yourself that it's a temporary, not dangerous problem, which will pass soon. Try to recognize that everything, you feel now, is a result of fear. And the faster you get rid of your anxiety, the faster symptoms go away.
Step 3: focus on something
Find an object and try to concentrate your attention on it. Take a good look, noticing the color, shape, size and other features of the thing.
Focusing on something, besides your fear, can quickly diminish the symptoms of panic attack.
Step 4: try to make a conversation
It may seem like you can't breathe and do anything during the attack. But try to speak with somebody and maintain conversation. This can help normalize breathing and keep your mind in the present moment.
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