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Quick General Tips for Sudden Anxiety or Panic Attacks

An estimated 19% of the US population has or has had any anxiety disorder in the last year. Obviously, a number so high means many of us struggle with some form of anxiety, or even panic attacks.

Personally, while I have grown in many ways over the last few years, my anxiety has only worsened. While I strongly encourage anyone and everyone to talk to a therapist or use a tool like Better Help where they have different contact options, I know sometimes people are not ready or they do not have the ability to do so for one reason or another at this time. Because of this I wanted to share some very general tips for coping I have grown to use sometimes that I wanted to offer as a potential trick for helping you break that peak of the anxiety attack.

  1. De-stimulation! - For me, this looks like going into a small room (like a bathroom), turning off the lights, laying pressed up against the door and pressing my knees and hands onto my face.

  2. Loud music - I have always been a music gal, but this can potentially be a tool for many as not being able to handle silence without growing anxious can be a symptom of anxiety for many. I like to use over the ear headphones for when I am struggling with an attack, and I base the type of music on the type of attack I'm having.

  3. Biting into a lemon - not my favorite. But there is a lot of research behind the effect it has on your brain and pulling you out of the peak.

  4. Ice cold shower - this one is not for me. I just can't will myself to it, but like biting into a lemon can alert your senses.

  5. Socializing with someone you trust - this one I think is only dependable in certain situations. There are attacks where I cannot come up with the will or stamina to stand up let alone go out and do something with another person. But there have been less intense attacks where I have forced myself to try, and it really did help. Maybe try it, if you are up for it?

These are just a few ideas you can try. Maybe one or more won't work for you, maybe none even. But maybe one or more will, and you won't know unless you try. If you're struggling with frequent anxiety attacks please reach out to someone. If you want some help in looking around, shoot me an email and we can do it together - I know I really struggled to look at potential therapists when I was looking alone. Two is better than one :)

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