October 14


How To Deal With A Panic Attack

By Stephen Boylan Dip Couns, PG Cert MHCBT, REG MBACP

October 14, 2018

Anxiety, Panic Attack

How To Deal With A Panic Attack

In this article, you're about to discover, how to deal with a panic attack.

I'm going to reveal, seven easy steps to help you to deal with a panic attack.

If you've ever had a panic attack, you'll know that it's really scary and you don't know what to do for the best.

You might think, it's a good idea to breathe in and out really fast to control the panic attack!

Or, you might simply think it's a really good idea to completely avoid the situations that trigger your panic attacks!

But worry no more because in this article I'm going to finally share with you, what you should never do and what you really need to do if you want to deal with a panic attack.

What Is A Panic Attack? 

Before I share with you how to deal with a panic attack, it's really important that you understand what a panic attack is.

Panic attacks are very common and according to studies it's been identified they occur in up to five percent of the general world population.

When you experience a panic attack you'll feel a sudden onset of intense apprehension, fear or terror and a mix of physical bodily sensations such as:

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  • Feeling dizzy 
  • Difficulty in your breathing 
  • Palpitations 
  • Pains in your chest
  • Tingling sensations in your body
  • Sweating 
  • Shaking in your body
  • Your legs feel like jelly

These physical body sensations are always accompanied by a wealth of negative automatic thoughts. For example, you might think "I'm going to die" or "I'm going to have an heart attack.

I understand that you might think it's natural to have these thoughts when you experience these sensations but they are largely a misinterpretation of what's going on in your body.

Never the less, when you have negative thoughts your physical sensations will increase and so will your panic attack. You'll soon get stuck in a negative trap of hell.

What Maintains A Panic Attack? 

If you're really serious about learning how to deal with a panic attack you really need to understand what's maintaining your panic attacks.

Your panic attacks will be maintained by a combination of the following:

  • Stressful life events 
  • Negative worrying thoughts about the bodily sensations
  • Scanning your body for sensations 
  • Avoidance and safety seeking behaviours 

There a wealth of strategies that you can use to deal with these problems and therefore I'm going to share with seven easy steps to help you to start deal with these problems. 

7 Easy Steps To Deal With A Panic Attack 

Now that you understand what a panic attack is and you understand what maintains your panic attacks. I'm going to share with how to deal with a panic attack in just seven easy steps.

Step 1: Monitor Your Anxiety Levels 

The first step I want to share with you, in this article and this step will be something that you will do throughout all the steps that I will share with you. I'll explain why in just a second.

Firstly, you need to monitor your anxiety levels. What do I mean by monitor your anxiety levels? To do this, you need to use a scale of zero to ten, with ten being classified as extreme anxiety, couldn't be any worse, and zero is obviously no anxiety.

You need to notice where you place yourself on the scale when you have a panic attack. Whether it's a ten, an eight, or a nine. You need to try and do it by making a mental note in your mind. And then, you must follow the remaining six steps that I'm to go share with you in this article.

Step 2: Stay In The Situation 

Step number two, you need to stay in the situation. Do not leave the situation, because by leaving, you and your brain will technically learn that, this is how to cope with a panic attack.

Therefore, you will continue to keep moving away, and this will maintain and keep the panic attacks going. You need to stay in the situation and continue to use the additional steps in this article.

Step 3: Notice What's Happening In Your Body

Step number three, you need to try and notice what's happening within your body. Be mindful of what's going on within your body. Try to relax your shoulders. Try to drop your shoulders down and try to relax.

Then you need to notice your feelings, what are you experiencing, and what is happening? Try not to fight these feelings because as you fight them, that's when you will ignite the anxiety and the panic attack.

Try your best not to fight the panic attack. Just be aware of what’s going on, and be mindful of the feelings that you've got.

Step 4: Use Positive Self-Talk 

Step number four, you need to use, what I call, positive self-talk. Positive self-talk is extremely important to use when you have a panic attack.

You must tell yourself that it's just a panic attack and that nothing dangerous will happen. You need to tell yourself that it's a panic attack and that the panic attack will subside very soon.

It's important to constantly say this over, and over again. Tell yourself that you will be okay and that you can cope with it. You need to use positive self-talk.

Step 5: Take A Deep Breath In

Step number five, you need to take a deep breath. Take a deep breath, right into your stomach, and just embrace the anxiety. Try not to do lots of deep breaths or try to control what's happening.

Instead, just take a nice deep breath into your stomach, and then continue to use the positive self-talk, and continue to notice the feelings you are currently experiencing.

And then again, don't forget to continue to monitor your anxiety level by placing where you are as you've gone through each of the steps, are you noticing that the anxiety and the panic attack is coming down?

Step 6: Relax Your Tense Muscles

Step number six, relax your tensed muscles. What do I mean by relaxing your tense muscles? When we have a panic attack, our muscles tend to get really tense.

So, what you need to do is try to clench the muscles, starting from the top of your head all the way down to your feet.

Clench your muscles as tight as you can and then relax the muscles. You need to keep doing that for each muscle group in your body. 

As you go through the previous steps that I've just covered, again, remember to continuously monitor your anxiety levels, as you begin and continue to relax each muscle within your body.

Step 7: Accept The Feelings Of Anxiety

Step number seven, this is the last one, but it is by far, the most important step that I've shared with you in this article. You must accept the feelings.

Accept the feelings of anxiety, because the more you try to fight them, the more that the anxiety will try to take over you. So, accept it, allow the anxiety to pass over you.

The more you fight it, the more it will come. Instead, you simply need to embrace it to allow it to pass naturally.

Eventually, if you go through the previous steps, and you continue to monitor your anxiety, the anxiety and the panic attack will subside.


Well, there you have it. My article on, how to deal with a panic attack in just seven easy steps.

If you've got any specific questions about coping with and dealing with panic attacks, please leave them below, and I would really love to help you out.

Also, please don't forget to like this article, and more importantly, don't forget to share this article with your friends.

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Stephen Boylan Dip Couns, PG Cert MHCBT, REG MBACP

About the author

Dear Friend, Stephen Boylan here, I'm the founder of Natrul. My mission and passion is to help you to improve your mental health and well-being. I hope you have found this blog post helpful and if you have any questions please feel free to comment below. I look forward to helping you.

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