Though the most popular forms of treatment for panic attacks and panic disorder are the psychological methods, they often involve the use of anti-depressants or anti-anxiety pills as an aid to the treatment. Patients who are uncomfortable taking medication or are uncomfortable with the method itself often take much longer to recover should they recover at all. (It is difficult to recover from any problem without the patient’s full participation.) Because of issues like these and the growing trend of living a more natural lifestyle, many patients have tried treating panic naturally.
Natural methods for treating panic disorder have their roots in alternative treatments or therapy. These methods are often holistic and involve only natural medicine. Some treatments bear similarities to psychological methods, which make them noteworthy because psychologists may be able to use them in order to help and treat their patients.
The most similar to psychological methods are biofeedback and neuro-biofeedback. These methods are similar to CBT, aiming to help patients understand their body and control the attack. During a biofeedback session, a patient is hooked up to machines that give them feedback on how the body is doing. This helps the patient see how their body reacts when a panic attack is about to hit. By knowing and being able to spot the very first small signs, patients can control the panic attack, preventing it from happening. Neuro-biofeedback works the same way, except that the focus is on the brain and controlling brain activity through thoughts. Hypnosis and self-hypnosis are two more treatments that stem from psychology. The coaxing or training of the brain to stop panicking, or training the person to control their panic attack by establishing a hypnotic trigger finds its roots in learned behavior and classical conditioning.
Other popular methods of treating panic naturally, which are less related to psychological methods than those mentioned above, include mediation, aromatherapy, and herbal therapy. Most of these therapies involve learning to relax the mind or creating soothing environments for the body so that anxiety is less felt. For example, herbal treatments often involve drinking or eating certain herbs. For treating panic naturally, borage juice and chamomile tea are often recommended because of its soothing or calming effects on the body. (Keep in mind that it is always best to consult a herbalist before trying any herbal treatments.) Aromatherapy is similar to herbal therapy, except that it uses scents to help soothe and relax, and in some cases to stop an oncoming panic attack in its tracks. Often, the most effective scents are specific to the person and their history.
Treating panic naturally through meditation is another popular option among those who seek alternative treatments. When using it as a method of treatment, the patient needs to be well trained (it is best to attend a class for the first few sessions) and then to practice everyday. Mindfulness is one specific kind of meditation which really helps patients take control of their panic disorder. It is also known as meditation in action, training the person to be very aware of their surroundings, feelings and thought processes so that they can quickly address any situation that may lead to an attack.