How to Cure Panic Attack Disorder
Anticipation Anxiety is a common problem for people who suffer from panic disorder (reoccurring panic attacks). It is called Anticipation anxiety because the person dreads going into a place where they had a panic attack before. The dread can be so strong that it will trigger another panic attack just with the negative thoughts conjured up in the person’s imagination. This whole process is a self-fulfilling prophecy and leads to a negative cycle. Quite often the sufferer will tell themselves on top of their wonderful imagination which is producing lots of horrible images that they cannot cope. Thoughts such as
-What if I go crazy in this situation and somebody calls the police and I will be taken away and locked up in a cell, etc.
-How am I going to escape if I have a panic attack on plane somewhere - what if I cause a scene on the plane and we get diverted, etc.
-What if I collapse at the shopping mall as my legs feel so wobbly.
Lack of Confidence
There are a million different things that sufferers can imagine within everyday life activities where they believe they just cannot cope. These thought processes will actually cause a panic attack in the exact situations you don’t want and will leave your confidence at an all-time low. Your body and mind will become extremely sensitized to these situations resulting in more panic attacks and anxiety.
So How do you Cure Panic Disorder?
The work has to be done before hand with positive affirmations which can help you cope. More importantly do not run from the perceived fear (WHICH WILL REINFORCE THE PANIC) but to stay calm, relax and tell yourself the positive affirmations.
‘Positive affirmations are statements you repeat that affect the subconscious mind, making it act to attract success and improve your life.’
Most importantly you have to stay in the situation and face the panic attack all the way through. No matter what it throws at you, you have to be strong. Every person who has suffered from panic attacks will tell you that after the attack was over it never actually harmed them. Once you actually stand toe to toe with it, without fear, you will find it has NO POWER OVER YOU.
This will breed new confidence inside you to get your life back on track and get you enjoying life again.
However there is another aspect you need to get under control. Once you’re in you’re a situation which is causing you panic, you do not scan for everything in the vicinity that may trigger a panic attack. This is sometime known as hyper-vigilance.
The definition of hyper-vigilance is
‘Hypervigilance is an enhanced state of sensory sensitivity accompanied by an exaggerated intensity of behaviours whose purpose is to detect threats. Hypervigilance is also accompanied by a state of increased anxiety which can cause exhaustion. Other symptoms include: abnormally increased arousal, a high responsiveness to stimuli, and a constant scanning of the environment for threats.’
You may also start to use your wonderful imagination to worry how events may change. For example you scan a room for the exits in case you need to 'esacpe' quickly. Then you start imagining 'what if' the exists get blocked. This encourages you to become panicky. Your mind in a panic state has because an expert at picking up threats which in turn causes strange bodily sensations. Our bodies are all unique, but for you perhaps tightness in throat or a missed heartbeat automatically produces scary thoughts. These in turn produce more adrenaline which produces more odd sensations. A person happy in their own body does not look inwards at their body functions. We are not designed to think this way, so when we start scanning externally and internally we are naturally going to feel anxious.
Things that we are interested in we tend to notice far more easily. Every little sensation of anxiety to a panic attack sufferer can be interpreted as some imminent catastrophic event. A de-sensitized person would just ignore these sensations and of course they would just go away.
An example of how we consciously and subconsciously pick up things is say you wanted to book up a holiday to Egypt but you don’t really know much about the country. You might ask friends who have travelled to Egypt and coincidently they telling you what a wonderful time they had. Then you start noticing adverts on the TV promoting Egypt. A week later you read an article in Sunday newspaper promoting the tourist spots for Egypt. All of a sudden it looks like everyone is going to Egypt on holiday. The fact is Egypt is a popular holiday destination and adverts/ reviews are always on TV and in papers, but because you’re interested in Egypt you start picking up on these things. It’s exactly the same with panic attacks. Your mind has become preoccupied with studying every symptom and trying not to have panic attack. The result of this is that you end up having one because you notice every little bodily sensation -fear them.
• To make your recovery long term you have to stand firm, and see a panic attack all the way through to the end. A PANIC ATTACK IS – NOTHING – YOUR BODY IS JUST BLUFFING THAT SOMETHING IS WRONG.
• You must live your life confident that whatever life throws you can cope. If you anticipate threats internally and externally you will never believe you are free of panic attacks and will therefore fear them. You will be subconsciously telling your mind to trigger anxiety. Only when you wake up each morning positive in the fact that anything life throws at you can cope will you truly be free from anxiety. Through Meditation , relaxation, breathing and positive affirmation you can reprogram your mind to start believing this.
I would recommend you read my Tools of Recovery for products that can help you.
Here are some books I would recommend -
Feel The Fear And Do It Anyway: How to Turn Your Fear and Indecision into Confidence and Action
Overcoming Panic and Agoraphobia
The Anxiety Cure
The Panic Attack Recovery Book
Panic Attacks: What they are, why the happen, and what you can do about them: What They Are, Why They Happen and What You Can Do About Them
Claire Weeks - Self Help For Your Nerves
Prevent Panic Attacks - Challenging the Thoughts which Cause Panic
How to Cure & Recover From Panic Attacks
20 Strategies to Help You Cope with Panic Attacks
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