- Alternative & Natural Medicine
How to Control Anxiety and Panic Attacks Naturally
Heart Palpitations and Adrenaline Surge
It's true that anxiety and panic attacks are often brought on by emotional situations. Heart rate skyrockets as huge amounts of adrenaline surges through the body. I won't go into all the details of what these attacks are like, because anyone who has experienced them—or witnessed someone who has experienced them—realizes that how frightening they can be. The sufferer often believes they will die from it. Thankfully, few, if any, ever do. However, that knowledge is little comfort for anyone who goes through such attacks repeatedly. The very fear of having to face such an attack again is, in and of itself, more fuel for the mind and body to create additional "perfect storms" for them to happen. This article is hope for all such sufferers, and those who witness and suffer with them. There are nutritional and natural substances, easily available, which can help control and manage anxiety and panic attacks. But first, let's understand how and why these attacks can happen.
Emotions That Generate Anxiety and Panic Attacks
Fear is the first and foremost reason for emotionally induced anxiety and panic attacks. When fear is confronted rationally, it usually loses its tremendous power. For example, be aware of where you are right now: It's likely that in this moment you are safe and there is nothing immediately in your presence that you would fear. The past doesn't exist because it's already happened. The future doesn't exist because it hasn't happened yet. Your mind is not focused on past or future events. It's focused on now. What is real is right now. In fact, now is all there is. There is nothing else. So whatever your fears may be, it's likely that you have far more power over them, than they have over you in this moment. If you think about worst case scenarios as a scale from one to ten, the statistical odds that you would actually encounter the worst case is very, very slim. Odds are that your experience would be somewhere in the low to mid range, even if it happens repeatedly.
If you do have a particular fear that can cause anxiety or panic, it's possible to envision yourself empowered to control the situation in your favor. It's like dreaming awake— a kind of day dreaming. This exercise, done little by little, can give the mind plenty of ammunition to empower itself to know how to handle fear inducing scenarios. You don't have to have a white-knuckled, pastey-faced, wide-eyed, nightmarish daydream to address it. Just take it in manageable chunks, little by little. You don't want to induce anxiety or panic in yourself, you want to desensitize your mind to your unmanageable fear of it. You take it in baby steps, and with each step, you become more empowered, in control, and in charge of these fear inducing scenarios.
Realizing that your actual experience with fear is going to be less than a 10 on the fear scale can help you keep your feet planted in what is real in the present. What is actually happening in this moment, will help you keep your mind in check so it doesn't fantasize and make the situation much worse than it really is. You begin to see your fear is far less powerful because you see more and more reasons why you are still safe in this moment, despite the unpleasantness of your circumstances.
Other traumatic emotions may also trigger panic and anxiety, but usually they build until fear takes over all emotions. Perhaps one of the best ways to diffuse these emotions that lead to debilitating fear is to try to talk about them with someone as they begin to occur. Conversation can actually help diffuse the fearful mind and keep it focused in reality. In reality, with someone else's help, we can actually begin to see how much less fear there really is in the circumstance. We begin to see that this fearful situation may be uncomfortable, irritating, sad, but not life-threatening. Most anxiety and panic attacks are not based on life-threatening experiences. They are based on fear of such experiences.
Biochemically Induced Anxiety and Panic Attacks
There are reports of people who are comfortable, safe, having no unpleasant thoughts or experiences, who suddenly, for no apparent reason, experience heart palpitations, bursts of adrenaline throughout the body, and hyperventilation. The experience is so fearful in and of itself, that emotions actually lag behind trying to catch up to what's happening in the body. With such confusion going on, it's incredibly easy for fear to take over, since there is simply no apparent reason for what's going on. A panic or anxiety attack of this sort can be even more bewildering than one induced by emotions.
How could a biochemical reaction happen in the body to produce such an attack? The foundation behind any illness or adverse reaction is usually the result of an imbalance of some sort in the body. Imbalances can go on for years before there are severe manifestations. The imbalances have a cumulative effect as time goes on until the body reacts by way of distress of some kind. Synthetic pharmaceuticals are designed to help alleviate such symptoms, and are powerful in their effectiveness, but there are problems associated with these substances. Adverse side effects and health problems can be amplified with long-term use of pharmaceutical drugs.
But even more alarming is evidence that the very prescription medications designed to control anxiety and panic attacks can actually produce side effects that cause them!
For example, mayoclinic.com posts this information on their website:
"Agitation, restlessness and anxiety can result from the stimulating effect that some antidepressants have. Although having more energy may sound appealing, it may mean you can't relax or sit still even if you want to."
Antidepressantsfacts.com says (paraphrasing) that the hormones cortisol and adrenaline are elevated in the body to combat increased serotonin levels, which are produced by antidepressant drugs. The body sees increased, unnatural rises in serotonin as a threat to its well-being, but the increased serotonin levels produce "deceptive" results (mood elevation) that both patient and doctor expect. In this regard, antidepressants do the job intended, but create other potential imbalances—information rarely, if ever, given to the patient. But here's the clincher: this means the body is forced into mood elevation in an unnatural way, causing cortisol (a stress hormone that causes the body to keep fat and burn muscle) and adrenaline to spike in the body, thereby, potentially elevating risks for anxiety and panic attack.
Startlingly, the pharmaceutical industry does not create natural substances to cure illness and symptoms of illness. It creates synthetic substances to control and manage symptoms of illness. Rarely, if ever, is there any mention of any pharmaceutical product that cures or heals a person. However, it should be noted that pharmaceutical drugs do save lives, and do increase quality of life for countless people who suffer. But it's the long-term effect of these medications that pharmaceutical companies may down play to increase bottom line profits.
Regardless of the reasons for anxiety and panic attacks, there is good news for those who suffer from them.
Nutritional and Natural Substances That Calm and Prevent Anxiety and Panic Attacks
There are wonderful, effective natural weapons for use against anxiety and panic attacks, including:
• inositol (calming effect on the nervous system)
• phosphatidyl choline (helps relieve racing thoughts and restless mind)
•amino acids capsules (balance brain and body chemistry)
Restore Balance to the Body
There are more possible helps for anxiety and panic disorders, but the real solution is to rebalance an out of balance body. Balance would include nutritious diet, exercise, optimizing digestion and assimilation and possibly including such simple things as a good quality vitamin/mineral supplement.
Additionally, if there are patterns of unhealthy thinking leading to catastrophic emotional upheaval and fear, one could consider such things as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, (CBT) and other books such as "Feeling Good" by Dr. David D. Burns.
Meditation and even mental exercises such as being aware of living in the Now can alleviate fear and restore peace to daily living.
Adverse symptoms we feel in our bodies are a result of some kind of imbalance. Something is out of order, deficient, or misaligned. Often these conditions can begin by the restlessness and unresolved issues of the mind. It can be worsened by poor diet, lack of exercise, nutritional deficiencies, and more. It can take time to restore balance to the body, particularly if chronic conditions exist, which can result in damage to organs and brain. However, consistently living by healthy emotional and nutritional principles, the mind and body can correct most—usually all—imbalances. When imbalances are corrected, with time for the healing process, suffering from anxiety and panic can be removed permanently.