Tad bit late as my meetings are on a Friday so apologies for the delay on my third therapy session.
In this time we spoke about what happens when I am having a panic attack, we discussed a situation where I would start feeling anxious and my panic attack would start to arise.
This is the picture of a situation I took from my first session…
We then looked at the vicious cycle of anxiety and what happens when we suffer a panic attack.
Again I took a picture (sorry for the blur, I took it quickly)…
This picture was based on when I have a panic attack caused by my phobia is vomiting, on the right we have the body sensations, mine being hot flushes, tingly throat, shaking, sweating, nausea, breathless, tense, racing heart and palpitations.
In the middle we have how it makes me feel, am i dying? am I going to pass out? I’m having a heart attack! I am going to be sick!! I know it is irrational but that’s why we struggle with panic attacks and anxiety because it makes us questions these things. It is scary! And what makes it worse is when we are having this panic attack the body sensations and thoughts/questions go round and round and round and intensify more and more and more!
So then on the right we have the safety behaviours! We all know we do them, use them, and think them to keep us ‘safe’!
Some of mine differ if I am having a phobia related panic attack I won’t eat anything, I chew gum, I hold my breath!
If I am having a anxiety panic attack I still hold my breath, I yawn to then get more oxygen, I get out of the situation quickly, I take my meds, head for the nearest exit.
And sometimes I avoid things all together like motorways!
And doing these behaviours each time is just feeding our anxiety. My therapist has said we need to eliminate these behaviours and overtime the middle and left will become easy and hopefully disappear all together.
Obviously I am going to be weaning into this slowly, I know that it is something that won’t happen overnight but I know I am on the right path now.
And will keep you updated.