Living With Panic Disorder

Panic attack is a sudden, terrifying feeling of fear and intense anxiety. Many people will experience panic attack at some point of their lives as a response to stressful situations.

However, people with panic disorder have the attacks on multiple occasions even without any apparent threat or danger.

Panic attacks come out of the blue making the sufferer avoid places or occasions because they are scared of the next possible attack. The person may feel persistent concern about having another attack, and may also change his or her behavior to accommodate the attack.

If you suspect that you or someone you love may be suffering from panic disorder, see your doctor for a diagnosis since symptoms of panic attack mimic those of heart attack. And, it is important you seek treatment, and the earlier the better.

How do you feel during a panic attack?

  • Pounding heart
  • Nausea
  • Fear of dying
  • Fear of losing control or “going crazy”.
  • Shortness of breath
  • Sweating
  • Chest pain
  • Shaking or trembling
  • Numbness or tingling sensations
  • Feelings of unreality or being detached from yourself.

Are there remedies?

Yes, the good news is that just like any psychological disorders, panic disorder is treatable.

  • Behavior therapy helps the person to face his fears through controlled exposure. If the person is terrified of heights, he is gradually exposed to taking occasional airline trips.
  • Cognitive therapy helps the individual examine his thought patterns and get rid of thoughts that trigger the attack. The person learns how to separate realistic and unrealistic thoughts
  • Relaxation therapy include meditation, deep breathing and guided imagery. It helps you relieve the stress that contributes to anxiety.
  • Medication helps to reduce the symptoms and make you feel better. Most of these medications have side effects, however.

Most people may respond best to a combination of these therapies. It may take time to achieve results, but they are effective to help you live a normal life again.

Thanks for reading!

Resource : Breaking the grip of dangerous emotions authored by Janet Maccaro, PH.d

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Insomnia, What is it?

Do you get trouble falling asleep? Do you find it difficult to stay asleep? Do you often wake up in the middle of the night? Do you wake up so early in the morning? If yes, you may be having insomnia.

Insomnia is a sleep disorder that makes it difficult to have a quality night’s sleep.

We have all had bad night at some time of our lives. But people with insomnia have this trouble lingering for a month or longer.

Insomnia leaves you unrefreshed, lethargic and sleepy during daytime.

The clear cause of insomnia is unknown, but factors such as medications, stress, depression, anxiety, illness and chronic pain increase the risk for developing it.

Entertaining anxious thoughts before bedtime may unsettle and keep you half awake at night. And one common side effect of the medications we take is insomnia.

Treatments.

Insomnia is treated with hypontics ( sleeping pills) and sedatives. These drugs include alcohol, the benzodiazepines and barbiturates. But first talk to your doctor or pharmacist before you take these medications.

Because these medications have undesirable side effects. Also, people who use them regularly may develop dependence and withdrawal may prove difficult.

However, people with mild insomnia can learn simple but healthy ways to overcome this discomfort and sleep well. They are;

  • Keep a regular sleep schedule. Go to bed and wake up at this same time everyday.
  • Avoid taking naps during the day
  • Don’t go to bed hungry
  • Get rid of any anxious thoughts before bedtime
  • Don’t eat too much close to bedtime.
  • Avoid alcohol and caffeine before bed.
  • Turn off your light and keep your room at a suitable temperature to induce sleep.
  • Get into bed only when you are feeling asleep or tired.
  • Most people have insomnia because of poor sleeping posture. Try to readjust your sleeping position.

Thanks for reading 😃

How to Care for Your Aging Parents.

Family caregiving is a responsibility people all around the world have embraced and practiced for a long time.

We assume the role of taking care of our parents at home who have become seriously ill, have had a tragic accident or retired. We offer our unconditional love, support, energy, time and resources.

Caregiving is rewarding. It offers us the opportunity to spend more quality time with aging our parents, make amends, settle our differences, and return their gestures of providing for us when we were little.

However, caring for your aging parents can be just as stressful as or even more stressful than raising children. Most people find it difficult to balance personal life or work and caregiving responsibilities.

If you’re one of them, then my practical guidelines will help you manage your caregiving responsibilities.

  • It’s OK to seek and ask for help. Don’t feel guilty to ask other family members for a hand. If things get tougher, consider getting extra help. Be specific and spell out the kind of help you need. Instead of saying, ” Becker, stop by this weekend if you have time” rather, say, ” Becker I need you to buy some fruits for mama this weekend“.
  • Always make time for yourself. Stick with your hobbies and interests. And, while you attend to the needs of your parents make time for your children and partner.
  • Protect your health. The stress of caregiving can hurt you and increase your odds of developing health problems such as depression. Eat well, exercise often and have quality sleep.
  • Get caregiver training. Enroll in a short caregiving program and acquire some basic skills and knowledge about how to go with things.
  • Hire a professional caregiver if you feel you can’t take care of your parents. This decision comes along with costs since it’s not covered by insurance plans. And, contact a reliable caregiving agency which run the best services.
  • Create a safe environment at home. They will spend chunk of their day indoors so remove all distractions and create a soothing atmosphere at home. If you can, get them their favourite pet to keep them company.
  • Minimize stress. Anger, frustration, low energy are warning signs of stress. You’ll perform poorly if you carry out your caregiving role under stress. Take time to relax and recharge.
  • Encourage them to participate in social and recreation activities. Offer to take them to places they have fond memories. It could be the movie theater, park or church.
  • Give them the opportunity to spend quality time with their grandchildren.
  • Help them make appointments with their doctor or pharmacist for regular check-ups.
  • If your parent is ill, learn about the disease. Read books and articles to get more information about their condition.This will help you seek the best treatment for them.
  • Learn how to communicate with health professionals. Collaborate with them and open up information that may help with your parent’s recovery, if they are ill.

Thanks for reading 😃

Living with Generalized Anxiety Disorder.

Generalized anxiety disorder ( GAD) is the most common anxiety disorder. While worrying is sometimes healthy and normal. People with GAD worry about everyday life events, from things in the past to things that will happen in the future. They have unusual high level of anxieties about their health, safety, job, family, and relationships.

Case study.

Marzia is a young mother who works at a petroleum company. She can’t stop herself from thinking that her boss will soon find her incompetent and dismiss her. She has a deep worry that someone might bully her daughter at school but her daughter always reports home safe and sound. She fears she’s overspending and will soon have no money in her bank account but she’s worth more than 10 million dollars. She visits her doctor every weekend to check her blood pressure but never an hypertensive patient. She’s extra careful not to offend anyone with her words. She worries if she’s eating well or gaining weight.

It’s normal to have these anxieties, but in the case of Marzia, it has become a habit and she can’t stop her from such worrying thoughts. It’s interferes her daily life and social functioning. If this last for six months or more then Marzia may be having GAD.

Symptoms of GAD.

People with GAD have symptoms of deep, ongoing worry, nausea, restless, getting startled easily, headache, tensed muscle, easily irritated, tiredness, trouble falling or staying asleep

Treatments and help.

If you or someone you care about is diagnosed with GAD, there are help and resources available to help reduce the symptoms. They can include;

  • Behavioural cognitive therapy. This tool has proven effective to help anxious people get rid of terrifying and dreadful thoughts, real or imagined with positive ones.
  • Relaxation techniques. Practice breathing exercises to help calm your thoughts.
  • Stay connected with loved one. You don’t have to deal this alone. Seek support and counsel from people you trust.
  • Get distracted. Listen to your favourite music or podcasts to help shift your mood and relax. Catch up with your friends and engage in wild conservations.
  • Anti-anxiety medications can help reduce the severity of the symptoms but I strongly recommend you see your physician before you self-medicate.
  • Websites and online organisations have resources and information to help you with your anxiety disorders.
  • Get professional help if your anxieties become crippling and unbearable.

Thanks for reading.

How to Beat Depression Without Medications

Hello readers!

Depression is hell. You need not to to read a book to understand.

It interferes your everyday life, ruins relationship and makes you completely insecure. It robs you the happiness and joy of living.

Depressed people find life not worth living.

The good news is, just like any other illness, depression is treatable.

If you’re battling depression or someone you love is depressed, it’s important you seek professional help.

However, besides medications, there are many cost- free things you can do to get better and recover.

Recommended actions:

1 Exercise more often.

Exercise is known to stimulate endorphins which boost the level of serotonin in the brain reducing the symptoms of depression.

2 Eat well.

There are foods that increase serotonin levels and lower depression. Some are green leafy vegetables, vitamins supplements, salmons ( rich in omega-3), avocados and magnesium supplements.

3 Reduce stress.

Studies have found a relationship between chronic stress and depression. Unresolved stress increases the odds of having depression. Learn how to manage and reduce stress.

4 Spend time with nature.

Exposure to sunshine triggers the brain to release more serotonin which significantly improve your mood and relieve depression.

5. Declutter.

Start the day with positive thoughts. Replace negative and/ or suicidal thoughts with healthy and optimistic ones. Declutter through meditation or affirmations.

6. Get productive.

Set daily goals and challenge yourself to reach them. This will help you stay motivated, improve your overall sense of accomplishment and feel worthed.

7. Connect with people.

There are many depression support groups you can join to share and learn from the experience of others who are facing similar challenges. It is encouraging to know that you are not alone.

Thank you for reading 😘

Tips to Overcome Migraine

There’s no worst feeling than to wake up on a beautiful morning with a throbbing headache.

“Could I be having yet another migraine attack“?

According to the International Headache Society (IHS), migraine affects approximately 28 million people in the United States each year. Women are twice as likely as men to have migraine attack.

Migraineurs may report of changes in mood, throbbing pain, nausea, vomiting, increased sensitivity to light, smells or sound.

The cause of migraine is not fully understood but there a wide range of treatments available that can reduce the frequency and/ or severity of the attack.

Medications from painkillers to triptans have proven effective to provide relief to migraineurs.

As usual, you need to see your GP for diagnosis before you self medicate. The treatment and trigger for migraine is different for everyone. What may trigger your migraine may not necessarily affect the other. And the treatments that may work best for a fellow may end up increasing the frequency or severity of your attack.

Here are some self-help tips.

  • Eat healthy.

Migraineurs should avoid foods such chocolates, caffeine, alcohol and cheese and other diary products. Rather drink plenty of water and avoid long hours without food.

  • Reduce stress.

Stress is linked with migraine. If you have high levels of stress in life, either from work or family, it will be healthy to cut it off because it plays a key role to trigger migraine. Practice yoga, meditation and relax more.

  • 3. Sleep better.

Having irregular sleep patterns could trigger your migraine. Try to get at least 7 hours of sleep each night. Maintain this sleep patterns even on weekends.

  • Keep a record.

Keeping records on the frequency, how long or what triggers your migraine could be helpful. It will enable you recognise triggers and warning signs and possibly reduce/ eliminate those triggers. Your GP could also use the records to provide an accurate diagnosis.

  • Control your environment.

Although you can’t change the weather, which is also known to trigger migraine, you can reduce the amount of light or sounds you expose yourself to. Wear sunglasses or MigraLens to reduce the intensity of lights. Also, avoid wearing strong perfumes and smoking.

Beat migraine and have cruise control in your day.

Thank you for reading! 😃

Happy new month!

How to Deal With Change.

Your daughter is going to college, a natural disaster has forced your family to relocate, you have a new boss who is bossy and demanding, your close friend is moving out of town.

Are you braced for such changes?

Change is inevitable and very uncomfortable but we must learn how to adapt to it.

A few years ago, my best friend moved away. I felt so lonely although we could still get in touch on social media but I felt I was completely going to lose her.

I recollected an article I read from Awake, a publication of the Jehovah witness offering advice on how to deal with changes in life.

I practiced their ideas and it really worked. Now, I’m doing just find with that major change. And I want to share it with you. I believe it will work for you too.

1. Accept the reality.
I realized I couldn’t change things, I can’t convince my friend from leaving. So, it was better I accept the reality and not stress on an event I don’t have control.

2 Focus on the positive.
There’s an old saying worth repeating often; ” every cloud has a silver lining”. Instead of feeling depressed, I picked my journal and listed at least three advantages that my new circumstance offered? I realized,

  • it was good for my friend who was about to start college to read economics.
  • it was an opportunity to make new friends and add to my inner circle.
  • It was good news for her mum who quitted her stressful job to begin her own business.

That change was really a blessing in disguise!
3. Look ahead.

It was better for me not relieve it over and over in my mind that I was not going to see her again, or that I would miss her terribly. Like me, get over it and keep your eyes focused on the future and begin to see the possibilities that life will reward tomorrow.

4. Develop resilience.

The person with resilience is able to recover from change, good or bad , and adjusts well to his new circumstance. However, the fellow who lacks it feels distressed, overwhelmed and struggles to live a normal life again.

Let us hear from you, how do you respond when you face changes, big or small, in life. I bet you have a lot of experience to share 😃

Thanks for reading! 😃