Additionally, many people use the terms “anxiety attack” and “panic attack” interchangeably, which can also be confusing.
The next time you think you might be having an anxiety attack, take our quiz to find out what your symptoms mean. Then read on to learn how to treat them naturally.
What is an Anxiety Attack?
An anxiety attack can be characterized by sudden waves of emotion that cause intense worry.
Often, thoughts about imminent events like illness and death or uncertain outcomes like the possibility of being late for a job interview can trigger these attacks. Mood disorders such as depression can also trigger it.
During an anxiety attack, you may find it hard to function normally or concentrate until these immense feelings pass.
Anxiety Attack Symptoms
According to the Cleveland Clinic, an anxiety attack is not listed in medical terminology, but that doesn’t mean your symptoms aren’t real.
Instead, you may be having a panic attack, which is likely due to an underlying anxiety disorder.
Here are some common signs of anxiety attacks:
- Chest pain or tightness
- Increased heart rate and breathing
- Shaking or trembling
- Sudden and severe thoughts of doom, panic, or death
- Feeling like you might be choking
- Chills or becoming too hot
- Nausea or vomiting
- Gastrointestinal symptoms, such as the quick onset of diarrhea or urge to use bathroom
- Unable to concentrate
- Feeling like you’re going crazy or that what’s going on around you isn’t real
Are You Prone To Anxiety Attacks? Decoding Your Quiz Answers
If you think you may have an anxiety disorder, then getting an early diagnosis from a mental health expert is important. This can help you manage the occurrence of an anxiety attack effectively.
Alternatively, you could also seek the advice of a Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) physician.
In addition, a TCM practitioner will also provide you with suitable therapies for keeping the symptoms of either condition at bay.
Let’s find out if your answers describe an anxiety attack or a panic attack.
If you answered mostly “A”
You may be prone to anxiety attacks. But don’t worry, because adopting the right management habits can help allay the symptoms of this disorder.
From a TCM standpoint, practitioners believe that anxiety disorders are typically caused by our emotions.
Fatigue, dietary consumption, or a weak body constitution, among other factors may also cause it.
According to Eu Yan Sang TCM physician Ignatius Ooi Yong Chin, “Excessive mood swings, which include feelings of happiness, anger, worry, thought, sorrow, fear, or shock, a weak constitution, susceptibility to chronic illnesses, fatigue, irregular lifestyle habits like staying up late at night, or an unhealthy diet that consists of frequent consumption of fried, pungent, and spicy food will cause the loss of qi, blood, yin, yang, and energy, and lead to anxiety.”
For this reason, physician Ooi suggests the consumption of a herbal brew known as rose tea.
Prepared with ingredients such as rosebuds, tangerine peel, and honey, this beverage can warm and nourish the heart, liver, and blood vessels, relieving liver qi stagnation in the body, inducing calm, and preventing depression.
Similarly, physician Ooi also believes that massaging the Foot-Jueyin acupoints of the liver meridian can help to suppress nervousness and anxiety by soothing the liver and regulating qi.
If you answered mostly “B”
You may not be suffering from anxiety, but you’re likely to be at risk of panic attacks.
Some attacks may come from environmental stimuli and cause hyperventilation. People will mistake for lack of oxygen and start to breathe more rapidly.
Physician Ooi says the best way to do away with panic attack symptoms is to inhale deeply and exhale slowly.
Apart from deep breathing, also try applying pressure to certain acupoints to manage different symptoms. Neiguan (PC-6) — located two inches from the horizontal lines of both wrists — can be stimulated to relieve chest tightness and slow heart palpitations. A firm press on Shenmen (HT-7) — located on the crease of your inner wrist — can soothe the nerves and regulate your heartbeat.
How To Prevent Anxiety Attacks
An anxiety attack (or a panic attack, for that matter) can affect you physically and mentally. It can also impair your overall quality of life.
In addition to the strategies mentioned above, you can prevent an anxiety attack by adding calming supplements to your diet.
Lingzhi Capsules contain the stalk and mushroom cap of the entire Lingzhi plant, which helps calm the mind and promote relaxation.
Here are some other tips for managing anxiety naturally:
- Exercise regularly to control stress and reduce cortisol levels
- Practice journaling or write down your tasks to prevent feeling overwhelmed
- Speak with a therapist or trusted friend that you can share your feelings with
- Eat a healthy diet and avoid highly processed inflammatory foods
- Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water throughout the day
On a brighter note, you can take comfort in knowing that the sooner you tackle anxiety or panic attacks head-on, the better the curative effect of therapy.
Share this quiz with people presenting the symptoms of either condition if you found it helpful, and check out our article on how to prevent an anxiety attack here.
- Michigan Health. 2017. Panic Attack vs. Anxiety Attack: 6 Things to Know. [Accessed on 28 January 2022]
- MedicineNet. 2021. What Is the Difference Between a Panic Attack and an Anxiety Attack?. [Accessed on 28 January 2022]
- Cleveland Clinic. 2019. Are Anxiety Attacks and Panic Attacks the Same Thing? [Accessed on 28 January 2022]