Panic attacks can be highly pervasive, impacting every area of an individual’s life – from friendships and romantic relationships to home and work life. And if you leave the condition untreated for a long time, it can also cause different physical problems.
A psychologist can offer long-term solutions to manage panic attacks. However, you can improve the effectiveness of the therapy through meditation, which is one of the most powerful ways of controlling anxious thoughts.
As per studies, using meditation for a panic attack can help relieve the condition, even if it’s just a one-hour introductory session. But before we understand how meditation can help people with panic attacks, let’s take a closer look at the condition.
What Is a Panic Attack?
A panic attack is a sudden, brief incidence of extreme fear and anxiety, causing severe physical sensations.
The Causes of the panic attack
These physical reactions include:
- Shortness of breath
- A racing heartbeat
- Muscle tension
Panic attacks happen unexpectedly and frequently. Though they are not life-threatening, they can be frightening and significantly impact an individual’s quality of life. Panic attacks can last from a few minutes to at least an hour. Nevertheless, a panic attack’s emotional and physical effects might last for several hours.
Panic attacks are pretty standard. Around 35% of the world population experiences them at some point in life, with 11% being Americans. Approximately 2% to 3% of cases of panic attacks move on to develop panic disorders.
If left untreated, prolonged and frequent panic attacks can be disabling. People of almost all ages can have panic attacks, including children and teenagers. Women are more likely to experience these attacks than men.
Meditation for Beginners having a panic attack
If you have decided to overcome your panic attacks, guided meditation can be incredibly effective, including counselling and guidance.
- For first-time meditators, it can be strange to sit in complete silence, observe their internal feelings and thoughts, and do nothing. Meditation for beginners can feel a bit exhausting or even overwhelming.
- Initially, when you sit down to meditate, you will find your mind easily distracted, restless, and busy. After all, the human mind is a wild horse that even the most experienced psychologists cannot tame overnight. So, effective meditation for beginners requires good practice.
- Close your eyes, focus on breathing, and allow your mind to do everything else.
Some tips that can help you to overcome panic attacks as a beginner in meditation are:
- Choose a proper time and a quiet place.
- Get in a comfortable posture.
- Have an empty stomach.
- Try out some warm-up exercises.
- Take deep breaths.
- Have a smile on your face.
How Does Meditation Help People with Panic Attack
Experts attribute the significant signs of a panic attack to the body’s fight or flight responses. During this response, hormones such as cortisol and adrenaline are released, which trick the body into thinking that it is in danger even when it isn’t.
Meditation helps people with panic attacks by triggering the relaxation response of their body. Different meditation techniques like mindfulness, breathing, visualisation, and grounding one’s body in the present moment inform the body that it is safe now. Meditation and mindfulness can also help you become more aware of the present moment and let go of anxiety-inducing thoughts.
People who experience recurring panic attacks can use meditation preventatively as an integral part of their regular wellness routine. This way, they can identify the onset of an attack and take the proper steps to control it, making it less likely to occur in the first place.
Meditation is helpful For People With Panic Attacks.
- Triggering the relaxation response of their body.
- Mindfulness, breathing, visualisation, and grounding one’s body in the present moment inform the body that it is safe now
- Meditation and mindfulness can also help you become more aware of the present moment and let go of anxiety-inducing thoughts
Some meditation ideas to relieve panic attacks are:
- Five Senses Meditation
- Breathing Meditation
- Body Scan Meditation
- Walking Meditation
Guided Meditation for Panic Attack
While you can ease the symptoms of a panic attack with the help of meditation, most beginners may find it challenging to practice the technique on their own. Luckily, they can turn to guided meditations for use.
Guided meditations for panic attacks are led by an experienced and trained instructor, allowing even first-time meditators to achieve relaxation and reduce stress. The instructor teaches students–
- a) How to sit and breathe.
- b) What to think about or visualise.
- c) How to adjust their feelings and thoughts.
Guided meditation helps in managing panic attacks in several ways, such as
- Focusing on the present moment
- Breathing better
- Having a better sleep
- Shifting away from the thoughts that can lead to a panic attack
Thus, guided meditation, under the supervision of a trained instructor, can help individuals manage their panic attacks better.
Undoubtedly, meditation is the most impactful way of managing panic attacks. Meditation reduces stress levels and encourages you to live in the present, effectively reducing the occurrence of panic attacks.
However, meditation is just one way of managing anxiety and panic. If you are experiencing panic attacks recurrently, you might need other tools to help the condition, such as medicines and expert therapy.
Using medicines and therapy in conjunction with meditation is an effective way to handle panic attacks. Opt for a trusted online platform for mental health wellness like United We Care for expert therapy and meditation. It has thoroughly trained and licensed counsellors and meditation experts to understand your problems and help you practise the correct meditation techniques.
Overcoming panic attacks can be slow and requires constant practice and effort. However, know that you can overcome it eventually and start living a more balanced and peaceful life.
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