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Twitter user explains how to deal with someone's panic attacks with a very handy list

Actor Kelsey Darragh wrote down things her boyfriend could do to help her through her panic attacks, and they stand true for everyone

Rachna Srivastava SPIN_occhio 24 May 2018, 5:23 PM
Globally, one in every 13 people is battling anxiety issues

Globally, one in every 13 people is battling anxiety issues Image: Thinkstock

In the history of exclaiming 'calm down!' at another person, has one ever been able to calm down? It's hard to do so when one is feeling heightened emotions. And the unsaid and very first rule of dealing with someone having a panic attack or a meltdown is to not scream at them or ask them to.. yes, you got that right, calm down.

But not everyone knows that. According to World Health Organisation (WHO), one in every 13 people suffers from anxiety disorders, globally.

The major problem that people face when dealing with someone going through an anxiety attack is that they are clueless about what to do. There's no formal training at school, there's no guidebook. So how does one deal?

Kelsey Darragh, who happens to be an occasional actor, openly admitted to having anxiety issues and panic attacks. She recently took to Twitter to share the list of helpful pointers she made for her boyfriend to follow. Her boyfriend was often clueless about how to react around her whenever she would have an attack.

The list – 15 realistic things you can do to help me through a panic attack – enumerates relatable things everyone must follow.

1. Know that I am scared and won't be able to explain why. So please don't freak out or be annoyed with me.

2. Find my meds if they are nearby. Make sure I take it.

3. Breathing exercises are going to frustrate me but they are vital. Try and get me to sync my breathing with yours.

4. Make gentle suggestions of things we could do together to distract my panic. (Don't tell me what I need/should do and listen when I say no to something).

5. For dissociative panic, remind me that this has happened before and this too shall pass! It always does. But it's scary AF when it's happening, so maybe tell me some fun facts about me or our life together that will make me smile or laugh. :)

6. Sips of water can be helpful but don't tell me I need to eat or drink because, trust me, I feel like I'm going to vomit it. :(

7. Keep breathing with me.

8. If we can leave where we are – take me home!

9. Please be really, really nice to me. I'm not feeling like myself. I'm embarrassed, feeling guilty, already putting you through this, so please don't get frustrated with me. :/

10. Sometimes a really big, loose, long hug will help me feel safe.

11. Helping me breathe will be hard but so key!

12. If it's really bad – call my mom or sister or BFF on the phone for me!

13. Tell me not to fight it – rather, let it pass through me. The more I try to control it, (or for you to try and control it) the worse it will be.

14. Empathise with me. You may not get it, but you get me!

15. Once it passes (like hours later), open up a dialogue with me about it. How'd you do? What can we do next time?

Kelsey even opened the floor and asked her followers to contribute and they, too, shared what they do during such times.

This sure is handy, isn't it? Also remember, compassion is key. So be nice to them and treat them the way you would want to be treated in such a situation.

Read more:

A mental health expert on 5 things anxious millennials should know before socialising

 4 Instagram accounts which talk about mental health with memes

Catch It, an app to fix anxiety and depression for you

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