“Mom, come get me from school. I’m freaking out and nauseous.”
“Mom, I can’t get out of the car. I JUST CAN’T DO THIS. I can’t breathe! I think I’m going to pass out!”
“It’s happening again, Mom, I hate this! I don’t understand why this is happening to me.”
Teenagers have a difficult path getting to adulthood and when you throw panic attacks into the mix, that path becomes far MORE difficult. Torturous, even. As a parent, let me tell you… You feel pretty damn helpless. I hate it.
My daughter struggles with panic attacks, along with a nasty little negative voice in her head that comes along with them, and it’s become something that is heavily impacting her life. Her panic attacks have become so strong that she misses entire days of school. Her fear of having one magnifies them into monsters she can’t control.
She’s not alone.
Journalists also deal with panic attacks, sometimes even on the air live – and it’s far more common than most people realize.
Whether it lasts seconds or minutes, a panic attack is far more than just anxiety. They can be so severe that the person suffering the panic attack might actually think they are going to die, throw up, have a heart attack or pass out. They can’t rationalize or control their response, and it can happen without warning.
How to help someone having a panic attack can be a very useful skill for PR professionals. Who hasn’t had a client that becomes overly anxious at the thought of a live television interview? If that anxiety turned into a full-blown panic attack, would you know how to help them?