Being Open About Panic Attacks

Woman lying on floor experiencing a panic attack with hands on face

Impending Sense Of Doom

Anyone who has ever experienced a panic attack will tell you that it’s one of the worst feelings in the world. The impending sense of doom that many experience when a panic attack comes into being, is a feeling and thought that your life is about to end; everything to come down to this very moment. That’s why being open about panic attacks is important and can prove to be very beneficial.

Sometimes it helps to tell someone around you that you might have a panic attack in the next couple of minutes. It takes a lot of confidence to divulge such information, so that’s why it’s better to tell someone who you feel comfortable with. But if you have the courage to tell anyone, it can still help prevent you from experiencing a panic attack.

When you share with others around you your fear of an impending panic attack, you are basically incorporating another person into your experience: when this happens, there’s a greater chance that the panic attack will not start in the first place, or diminish right away. This is because you’ll feel more comfortable about your situation if someone knows about it.

Part of the battle with panic attacks is that you want to avoid any detection. If anyone notices your symptoms, you start to freak out even more, thinking to yourself, “I probably look like a fool right now. This is so embarrassing!” This worsens the symptoms. But when you tell someone that you’re about to have a panic attack, that person can now help you calm down.

It’s all about distraction with panic attacks. Whenever you become distracted from the train of thoughts surrounding a panic attack, it tends to either never come into play or go away much faster. Because what is a panic attack? It’s a set of uncomfortable anxious symptoms based on thoughts that have gone haywire in the present moment.

Panic attacks are also based on patterns: if you previously had a panic attack in the middle of the mall, then the thought of having a future one, again in that setting, starts to occur even before you arrive at the mall. But if you tell someone who is with you at the mall, “Hey I think it’s about to happen. Can we sit down and relax for a bit?”, there’s a good chance that you’ll feel better, rather than dealing with it on your own.

So don’t let panic attacks corner you. Always tell someone about it, especially if you have a good opportunity to do so. Don’t be embarrassed.

Are you Ready? (This is Defeating Stigma Mindfully)

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