Once the anxiety ball has started rolling, it can be tough to stop it before a full-blown panic attack occurs. Trust me on this one because I’ve had plenty in my lifetime. After a few attacks, I started learning the symptoms leading up to one. So that way I could stop it from every happening.
In order to stop it, I have to get my mind off of what’s currently playing in my head. This can be very difficult and that’s why I’ve developed little quirks to help. Unfortunately, mine are super strange, but as I’ve said before – whatever works! This is a judgment free zone. So here’s my 5 quirks:
- Burping. I swallow air to make myself burp. It’s totally gross. However, people with anxiety tend to have the trifecta (I’m not a doctor by any means, but I’ve done my research) which includes anxiety, acid reflux and allergies. For me, the acid reflux makes me feel like I can’t breathe. Almost like someone is choking me. Relieving the build up by burping helps make that feeling go away. It also helps to decrease the bloat in my stomach making it feel like I can’t breathe.
- Biting on my finger. A lot of times I hyperventilate when I have an anxiety attack. By sticking a finger in my mouth and biting down, it only allows a certain amount of air to get through so I’m not getting too much oxygen. Sometimes I’ll chew on a straw to get the same effect.
- Taking a shower or bath. While it’s normal to take showers, it’s probably not normal to sit in them for excessive amounts of time. When I can’t sleep at night because I think I’m dying or I’m having an episode of PVCs, I hop in a hot, steamy shower. It helps me to relax and makes it to where I can’t hear or feel my heart arrhythmia. Sometimes, I’ll even take baths and put on a movie. It’s just something about the hot water that helps soothe me.
- Watching something. This is one of the best things I can do. Whether it’s a weird video on YouTube or a TV show I can get lost in, it helps stop my anxiety attack from ever penetrating the surface.
- Putting my fingers in my ears to block out noise and allow me to focus on my breathing. Sometimes I think anxiety is caused by over stimulation from things around us. That’s why putting my fingers in my ears helps block out everything around me. Overhead lighting can also do this to me. Sometimes going to the bathroom and turning off the light helps to desensitize me.
Just a reminder: I am in no way a doctor or medical professional. I am not legally liable for any of the tips you try above.