Introduction to Panic Attacks, Symptoms and How to Control Through Effective Breathing Techniques
A panic attack is this intense wave of fear that comes characterized by some debilitating, unexpected, and immobilizing intensity. Once you have a panic attack, your heart starts to pound very fast, and you suddenly are not able to breathe. One will begin losing their breath, feeling like they are going crazy or worse, dying. A panic attack can strike from the blues without any clear triggers and well, without any warnings. Did you know a panic attack can occur not just when you are sited and relaxed but also when asleep? To some people, this could be a one-time occurrence just from the blues. However, some people tend to experience repeated episodes of panic attacks. With such recurrent episodes, they are sometimes triggered by specific conditions and situations e.g., when crossing a bridge or during public speaking. Typically, the panic-inducing situation is one where one feels endangered and vulnerable like they are trapped and not able to escape. This situation triggers the body to have a fight or flight response hence the panic attack.
That said, there are effective strategies that one can use to reduce or eliminate panic attacks. Ultimately you are looking at not just eliminating these symptoms but also regaining your confidence and taking full control of your life. While there are medications especially for panic attacks that occur as a result of other disorders such as social phobia, depression, or panic disorder, nearly all other instances of panic attacks can be controlled via breathing techniques. Breathing control to get over panic disorder has proven very useful in many situations. It is merely a process by which one re-educates their brain by positioning the bone structure to manipulate brain muscles. In the end, this process promotes relaxation and helps prevent over-reliance on chest muscles that tend to cause panic in the first place.
See, when you force the body to relax by using the diaphragm, you can reprogram the brain to relax. This way, the brain does not attach and relate any form of danger to the attack, thus dispelling the feeling of panic. This forced relaxation is simply having all chest muscles restricted apart from the diaphragm; the only muscle that people use for breathing and relaxation. Learning how to control panic attacks through breathing and relaxation is a very effective way of ensuring you are taking control of your body. Of course, this is a free technique that you can practice all by yourself with a little professional guidance.
What are the tell-tale signs and symptoms that you need to know when this abrupt onset of intense discomfort or fear strikes? When you experience any of the following four symptoms or more, then that is a panic attack and needs controlled breathing movements to help restore your body to normalcy. Sweating, pounding heart (palpitations or accelerated heart rate), shaking or trembling, feelings of choking, smothering or sensations of shortness of breath. Chest discomfort or chest pain, heat sensations or chills, feeling unsteady, dizzy, faint or lightheaded. Paresthesia (tingling sensations).