Steps to Prevent a Panic Attack


I see lots of postings on here about panic and anxiety, but nothing about steps one can try to prevent a full-blown attack.
Therefore, I am providing this list of known (and maybe some unknown) items that have helped me and my friends over the years. Aside from #1, these are in no particular order.

  1. Slow down overall and take several slow and steady breaths - in through the mouth, out through the nose
  2. Remember - you are not dying, even though it may feel like it.
  3. Count backwards from 100 or other number. Look at a calendar and count the days.
  4. Think of some place you love to be in and name off all the things you love about it
  5. Name off, in order, all of the albums of your favorite music artist. Substituting movies/actors is another option.
  6. Get up and move. Take a walk, clean the house, lift weights, do some stretches.
  7. Get angry - channel that adrenaline surge into something and scream about it (note - not a good idea at work).
  8. Look at an object and study all the fine details about it
  9. Look at your hand and notice all the lines in it (don’t laugh - this saved me countless times)
  10. Talk to someone about any subject and get involved in the conversation
  11. Attach a rubber band to your wrist and snap it hard when the feelings start
  12. Sing a song, Laugh at a joke
  13. Drink cold water
  14. Cry your eyes out
  15. Watch something fun on TV
  16. Think about what you are doing right now - not a minute ago, not 5 minutes in the future - but right now
  17. Pretend you are yelling at a person and give them a good “KNOCK IT OFF” (or worse) in your mind. Or verbalize.
  18. See #2.
  19. Know that what you are feeling is nothing more than misfired adrenaline.
  20. Know that, no matter how horrid this feels, the feelings do eventually end.
  21. Know that you are not alone in your feelings.

I invite anyone else to add theirs.

Thanks and may these help someone else out there.

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Haha, these are really good. Ive never had anxiety until I got migraine and now I have some control of my migraine I don’t suffer with it. I believe it goes hand in hand with migraine (look up seretonin and it’s effects). It’s a horrible thing.

Here’s some more to try if feeling panicky:

-Listen to some very loud music through headphones.

-Visualise the windows in your house and count every window.

-Run somewhere or go on a treadmill.

-Just tell yourself it’s a bunch of chemicals in your brain and it will only last around 30minutes or so max.

Just thought of 3 more…

  1. Find a quiet area of your house, office, etc and just sit in the corner. If you can, put your feet up and
    just try to relax as best as possible. I used to call this my “safe corner”.
  2. Carry something with scent you find very pleasing (whatever it may be). Start smelling it as soon as the feelings start.
  3. Spend time with a pet (if your situation allows).

see step 2 above, i like to carry a nice hankerchief I’ve sprayed with lavender
if I have to go somewhere I can put it over my face and take breaths
It sounds like an old lady thing to do but it’s like a portable peaceful place
I also like to wear a scarf i can wear over my nose and mouth if necessary
its all related to the migraine, I think the sensory overload is working on the same area in the brain
so i do things to tell my brain to take it easy, like i bought some cosy flanelette pyjamas
and warm slippers ( my toes are sometimes really cold)

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