The body's response - Deepstash

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The body's response

The body's response

A perceived threat may activate the body's physiological "fight or flight" response, similar to what your body would do if you're near a tiger. Your heart starts racing and pumping blood, so your muscles have the fuel to run or fight. 

Panic attacks are relatively common. One in four Americans will have at least one panic attack in their lives. But the pandemic seems to be causing many people to suffer panic attacks within a short time.

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Guidelines

For healthy people, a panic attack isn't dangerous. If you experience a panic attack, try the following:

  • Practice full, consistent breathing to combat hyperventilation.
  • Use relaxing distractions, like listening to music.
  • Another distraction method is to stop and notice five things you can see, four things you can touch, three things you can hear, two things you can smell, and one thing you can taste.
  • Exercise can also help stave off future panic attacks.

If someone else is in distress, do the following:

  • Ask the person if they want space or support.
  • Don't tell the person to "just calm down." Acknowledge their fear, and let them know you're there to support them.

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Panic attack symptoms

The tightening of the chest and breathing difficulties are often confused for symptoms of the new virus.

Panic attacks come on suddenly and typically last only 15 to 20 minutes, while symptoms of the virus emerge over a few days. With the virus, you will also have other symptoms, like a fever and a cough.

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A panic attack

The current pandemic is affecting the entire globe. As a result, many people may be experiencing panic attacks for the first time.

A panic attack happens suddenly, with short-lived disabling anxiety, fear, or discomfort. Your vision can get blurry, your chest can tighten, and you can't breathe.

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