Anxiety and anxiety attacks: 8 things to know and 13 things you should NOT to say
The frantic world in which we live exposes more and more people to anxiety and anxiety attacks. But there are several things you can do to improve your quality of life or to help someone in crisis.
The symptoms of anxiety and of an anxiety attack can be difficult to explain or put into words. Everyone has their own way of naming their state of ill being.
Whether for you or to help someone close to you, this article will help you understand and demystify the mal of the century.
Here are 8 things to know about anxiety and anxiety attacks:
- Anxiety and anxiety attacks are normal and sometimes necessary.
- Anxiety attacks are due to hypersensitivity
- After an anxiety attack, the person feels very bad.
- The irrational fears a person feels are responsible for the onset of the attacks, but those fears seem very real to the person about to have an attack.
- The anxious person needs to be heard and not judged.
- A person subject to anxiety is psychologically stronger than the average person.
- They generally have hope in the face of the anxiety that is overtaking their mind.
- For a person with this condition, the help and support for people around them are crutial to their recovery from an attack.
When a person is anxious he is simply more affected (emotionally and physically) by external events which would leave someone else totally indifferent.
The simple fact that the anxious person knows that it is their perception and not the actions of others, will help them to manage their crises. Afterwards, they may wonder why the situation bothered them and what would happen to someone who is not affected by anxiety attacks.
Learning to manage their strong sensitivity to make it a real asset in their daily life will be a source of personal enrichment. An hypersensitive person has a lot of qualities compared to a person who is not. Indeed, hypersensitive people are generally more creative, perceptive, imaginative, and emphatic than the people around them.
It is also difficult to understand the fear and distress that an anxious person feels after an anxiety attack, if you have not experienced it yourself.
Here's a bit of what it looks like:
With each panic attack, it's the same scenario. The person ruminates for hours, days, even weeks, to understand what is happening to them. Unfortunately, they do not necessarily find answers to reassure them, and sometimes anxiety this is when anxiety will settle in.
This period is so hard, so trying, that they are drained of their energy. Finally, they have the impression that their hearts are going to stop or that they are going out of their mind. These are irrational fears that assail anxious people.
Even if their fears are irrational, the distress they cause is very real. Their behavior can be difficult to bear for those around them. Indeed, they may appear to be whimsical, negative or angry. Also, they no longer necessarily realizes what they is doing or what they are saying as their mood becomes uncontrollable.
They feel guilty, ruminate over negative images and phrases for hours, making them extremely sensitive and on edge.
If you have never had an anxiety attack, but have someone around you who has, try to be patient with them and take a step back. Do not judge, be available, but let them come out of their black hole by themselves, because there is little to do except be available and open-minded.
These people will need you during difficult times. An anxiety attack is a normal phenomenon. When a person is in the midst of an anxiety attack, there is no point in panicking or blaming them. It’s counterproductive. It only increases their stress.
Rather then that you should try to reassure them by your mere presence. You can also offer a breathing exercise as simple as breathing hard and quickly with your hands covering your nose and mouth (or in a paper bag if you have one).
Know that anxiety attacks are not a mental illness. It is simply an excess of stress and anxiety, felt most of the time in trivial situations.
A person in the midst of an anxiety attack, you must remain calm and try to put things into perspective. Listening to relaxing music is a good way for both of you to take the stress out of the situation.
Often after an anxiety attack, people who suffer from anxiety and anxiety attacks just need attention and comfort. During these difficult times, they just need you to listen, and to be reassured to relieve their fear and sadness. You may not realize it, but people who suffer from anxiety often put a lot of pressure on themselves to remain dignified and positive despite the intense stress they feel.
Don't judge them. Do not say awkward things, which could be hurtful. for example:
- It's nothing, it's in the head.
- Why are you stressing? Can you see that there is nothing?
- You stress for nothing!
- I don't understand why you're doing this!
Listening is enough. This gives them the courage to get out of it. They are psychologically stronger than the average person. Many people imagine that being anxious or depressed means that you are in a weak psychological state. On the contrary. You have to have a strong temperament, and also a mental strength far higher than normal, to be able to endure anxiety attacks for months or even years. The anxiety attacks make them stronger and more determined. They keep hope in the face of anxiety.
Despite all their problems, they know very well that sooner or later, they will manage to overcome the difficulties linked to their anxiety. They need to know that they are not alone in this situation, and that many people have successfully overcome anxiety, depression and chronic stress on a lasting basis. They need to take the time it takes to feel better and find more calm in their lives.
Just be by their side. Support them during these trials, love them during their moments of doubt, and motivate them as they come out of their depression. The anxiety attack and anxiety can be controlled with time and patience.
Finally, here are 13 things you should not to say to an anxious person:
"Oh no, you're still screeching. Poor yourself."
"It's only a phase. It always ends up passing"
"Why don't you tell me about it?"
"Why don't you tell me what's wrong?"
"So ... when are you going to get help?"
"Here, have a drink it'll calm you down."
"I know how it is."
"What do you have to be so worried about?"
"It's all in your head."
"You have everything to be happy!"
"It will be fine."
"You should try to meditate."
"You are going to make it."
If you are in the life of an anxious or anxious person, do not hesitate to ask for help and support to get through the screech with them without ruining the beautiful relationship that is behind this crisis.