How To Help Someone Who Is Having A Panic Attack

Panic attacks are the abrupt beginning of a serious episode of overpowering apprehension and nervousness. There are various ways of aiding an individual in encountering a fit of anxiety. Among the numerous techniques, the first and foremost is to get their breathing under control. The accompanying article will help you out with the most proficient method to help somebody having a panic attack.

The article covers the early warning signs of an anxiety attack onset and when to get help when a situation like that arises. 


How to help someone during a panic attack

The most commonly suggested technique is the grounding technique. Here, the individual is asked to sit down on the ground and count to 10 as it is known to shift their focus to something else thus helping them to calm down and relax. 

It is important for those around people having panic attacks to know how to react to situations such as this. Due to the extreme nature of the symptoms, it may feel as though the individual experiencing them feels as if they are dying. 


Methodologies that reduce pain, facilitate what is happening, and prevent the side effects from turning out to be more regrettable ought to be followed. The ways by which it can be done include,

Calming them down: There is no way to predict the onset of a panic attack and there is no particular reason as to why one might experience panic attacks. Not all people experience panic attacks the same way, some experience it quite often while some experience it quite rarely. The sudden experience of a panic attack without any warning or indication can be quite scary.

Under such circumstances, it is mandatory to remain calm as fear and tension will only make the situation worse. Panic attacks often peak at about 10 mins therefore while administering help make sure to do so more so they reach the maximum scale of the attack. 

Talk positively and give hopeful affirmations: The words of the person consoling and taking care of the individual experiencing panic attacks are very important and do matter greatly. Try to engage in a conversation. Doing so helps them take their mind off tins and focus on your conversation, slowing talking to them and helping them regulate their breathing.

Ask what help the person requires and do so as per their request. The following are the guidelines on what should be said and done, 

Ask questions: Strike a conversation with the person you are trying to help. Introduce yourself and ask questions about them. You can ask what help they need and whether they’ve had a condition previously. This will trigger their memory of how they received from the previous attack thereby diverting their focus


Stay or let go: you can tell the person that they are in no compelling need to stay where they are and that they can leave the situation they want to. This will take the pressure off the person. This will help them calm down and make them feel more comfortable. 

Words of kindness: it is important to stay positive and non-judgmental. Assure the person that you are here to help them and that they are in safe hands. Utter words of hope and remind them that this is just a temporary experience that will pass away. 

Friendly conversation:  Engaging the individual in a conversation that is friendly will take their mind off the current situation they are facing. Assuming you are a companion of the individual, raise recollections that they are delighted in or are interested in to assist them with considering something different. 


Grounding techniques:

When panic attacks become way too severe. People tend to lose the sense of their surroundings, their situations, and the environment that they are in. to bring them back to the present, grounding techniques are followed and these include,

Sitting Down: Make them sit in a comfortable chair and ask them to relax. Rest their feet completely on the floor and focus should be directed towards their breathing. consciously inhaling and exhaling do help.

The 5-4-3-2-1 procedure: request that the individual investigates their environmental elements and name five items that they can see, four to contact, three sounds they can hear, two unique scents, and one taste.

Simple math: Counting 1-10 out of order, and performing simple calculations works p concentration thereby helping them to relieve their anxiety conditions. 

Provide ongoing help: After the individual has calmed down after an anxiety attack, it is common for some to feel embarrassed while some find it highly stressful. In such circumstances, you can continue to extend your support and engagement to ease them up. Reach out to them now and then and find out more about the condition so that you will be more prepared to administer help should the situation repeat. 


How to help them breathe?

At the point when an individual is encountering a panic attack, managing their breathing is significant. Try not to give them a paper pack to breathe in or breathe out from. Doing so can sometimes cause them to pass out. You can rather start breathing normally in front of them so that they can mirror your actions. This strategy will assist the individual with getting their breathing once more into control.


What are the things that ought not to be done to somebody encountering a fit of anxiety?

While directing assistance to somebody encountering panic attacks be aware of your activities, don’t accomplish something that could aggravate it,

Actions that cause negative results are

Asking the individual to ” quiet down”, telling them ” just relax” and requesting that they “attempt to unwind” will more often than not exacerbate the side effects


Do not become irritated with them. Understand that they are going through something severe and do not belittle them. Be patient and focus on them until the episode passes completely

Do not make assumptions. Ask them what they need and give them whatever they are expecting.


What are the warning signs that need to be taken into consideration?

Though a panic attack often has a sudden onset, there are certain warning signs that you need to look for, 

  • feelings of terror or dread
  • feeling as though they are dying
  • heart palpitations
  • shortness of breath
  • shaking and dizziness


Symptoms of Panic attacks:

There is no telling when one will experience panic attacks and this unpredictability can be quite frightening. A panic attack doesn’t necessarily mean that it happens only when a person is awake, it can also happen while they are relaxed or even sleeping. The symptoms of panic attacks can vary for each person, however, the common ones include, 

  • rapid heart rate
  • sweating, trembling or shaking
  • a loss of control
  • sense of impending danger
  • lightheadedness or faintness
  • feeling sick or nauseated
  • chest pain and stomach cramps

For people experiencing panic attacks or panic disorders, diagnosis and treatment will be given based on their medical evaluation. The Anxiety and Depression Association Of America asserts that the measurements of individuals encountering panic attacks represent up to 6 million in the United States alone and that is practically 2.7% of its populace.



Panic attacks are scary for both the individual who is experiencing them as well as those around them. Most commonly it occurs due to the rising of their stress levels and in such cases, it is important for those around the patient to stay empathic and calm.

The severity of the attack is also based on the response of the people who are around the patient. In addition to the aforementioned symptoms, if they are experiencing nausea or vomiting, call the emergency helpline number immediately. These can be indications that the patient might be having a heart attack.