Gaining Mastery over Your Anxiety Attacks

 By: James Smi
Anyone who has ever experienced anxiety attacks can attest that the condition can be very debilitating. Shortness of breath, palpitations, numbness, nausea, and the feeling of being trapped are all part and parcel of having an anxiety attack. Fortunately, there are ways of preventing an attack, foremost of which is identifying its cause.

What causes an anxiety attack?

An anxiety attack can be triggered by a number of reasons including illness, social events, or even memories of past situations. It is very important to know which situations trigger your attacks so you can take precautions to make them more manageable. For example, if going to social events like corporate parties triggers an attack, bring a friend with you to help you feel comfortable about the situation. Most importantly, consult your doctor for medications or therapies that can help minimize your anxiety.

Preventing an anxiety attack

There are several methods you can use or activities you can do to minimize your attacks or prevent them from happening like the following:

- Changing your diet

People who have switched to a more vegetable-dense or whole grain-based diet reportedly feel better than those who consume red meat. Scientific research shows that aside from keeping the body healthy, vegetables and whole grains release endorphins and other feel-good hormones in the body that promote a sense of well-being. On the other hand, people who eat red meat have been found to have a lot of stress-inducing hormones in their bodies that can trigger an attack.

- Avoiding caffeine-rich and alcoholic substances

Caffeine and alcohol can increase chances of attacks as well as certain drugs. Instead of taking coffee or alcoholic beverages for a quick pick-me-up, try substituting them with fresh fruit juice. Juices are healthy options that can give you a quick energy boost like caffeine without the danger of triggering an attack.

- Exercising regularly

Exercise and physical activity triggers the release of endorphins in the body which promotes a feeling of happiness. Aside from this benefit, exercise, particularly cardiovascular activities, also prevents attacks by providing an outlet for the release of stress and anxiety. Cardiovascular exercises also strengthen the heart and body so it can withstand attacks easily with minimal symptoms.

- Practicing relaxation methods

Certain activities like meditation, yoga, aromatherapy, and massages can reduce anxiety and stress levels in the body. They can also help you focus on good sensations and feelings that can improve your sense of well-being. You can try carrying relaxing aromatherapy oils like lavender and chamomile for a calming sniff when you feel an attack coming. Listening to soothing music, reading inspirational books, or drinking herbal teas can also soothe your frazzled nerves.

Although these prevention tips can help you ward of an anxiety attack, nothing beats talking to your doctor. A health professional specializing in anxiety disorders can help you understand your condition and provide you with treatment therapy. Along with the prescribed medication, you can also ask your doctor about group therapy for anxiety disorders.
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