Often time’s people will describe a response as to performing in front of people for the first time or to taking a test one time which resulted in an anxiety attack, but that is really not a fair assessment of the situation and it marginalizes the anxiety attacks that happen to people who suffer from them, so what is an anxiety attack.
Although you may feel a heightened sense of nervousness in a one-time event you really should only call that a case of nerves. This will help you avoid telling someone who is suffering an attack to buck up because you know how they feel.
If you have never had anxiety attacks then you really don’t know
how sufferers feel so, please don’t say that you do.
So, what is an anxiety attack?
What makes an anxiety attack different than what happens on a stage or presentation, that one time?
Clinically speaking an anxiety attack occurs when a person experiences repeated and unexpected panic attacks that occur suddenly; sometimes the cause is not known.
These individuals also suffer from fear that they will suffer another attack.
The symptoms of an anxiety attack are many and difficult to simply list, because not everyone experience’s the attacks the exact same way and some people may have symptoms that are totally unique to themselves, but there are some good descriptors that clients have used in the past to describe what happens to them in the midst of a an anxiety attack:
What is an anxiety attack for you can be totally different to, what is a panic attack for other sufferers.
Anxiety is not always a constant companion for individuals. Sometimes the anxiety can be described as mild, moderate or severe depending on how debilitating the condition has become for the sufferer. The symptoms can be sporadic, frequent or persistent as well.
Thankfully, anxiety attacks are totally treatable and resolvable.
You are not destined to suffer from these attacks for the rest of your life,
—— so you can breathe easier with that knowledge.
You and your therapist can come up with strategies to help you deal with sudden attacks such as mental imagery, mantras, and safe visualization. He or she can also help you learn to recognize the stressors that may onset an attack so you can learn how to deal with the occurrences even before the attack begins.
You can also learn who to let others know that you have these attacks and what they can do to help you through the attacks. By talking to others whom you trust about your attacks they can help you see what is happening and help you calm down. And this will help prevent a well-meaning person from saying anything that marginalizes what is happening to you.
If you can learn to see the signs that lead up to an attack, you can also deal with the fear of having an attack that exacerbates the occurrences.
In this way you can avoid the fear of fear that brings on the attack.
That may sound like circular thinking but in a way that is exactly what brings on anxiety attacks. The circular thinking that an attack is imminent brings on the expected attack, but if you have a strategy that blocks the attack before it occurs or a strategy that helps you through the attack may actually lessen the current attack and lessen further attacks until finally no other attacks occur.
Just because it feels or seems like magical thinking doesn’t mean it won’t work.