When you feel a panic attack coming on, one of the first signs is an increased heart rate. When your blood is pumping, it can make it very difficult to calm down causing the panic attack to become almost unavoidable. There are ways that you can help lower your heart rate so that you can calm your mind and get your head out of that fearful mindset.
Checking Your Heart Rate
The average heart rate is 60 – 100 beats per minute. If you think your heart rate is elevated, you can check it by putting your index and middle finger on the wrist of the opposite hand just below the baseline of the thumb. You can also check your heart rate through the large vein that goes along your throat just below the joint where your jaw connects. Instead of counting for a straight 60 seconds, count the number of beats within 15 seconds and then multiply by four. This gives you a good idea of what your heart rate is.
Slow Your Breathing
When you feel your heart rate is elevated, take in a slow breath of five seconds, hold your breath for five seconds, and then let out the air for five seconds. Keep repeating this until you feel your heart rate slow down focusing on your exhaling. It’s unclear as to exactly why, but your breathing and your heart rate are connected. Some scientists believe that it is a way for your body to use energy more efficiently.
With your mouth and nose closed, try to blow air out. While doing this, bear down like you are having a bowel movement and do this for about 10 to 15 seconds. In the first phase of this exercise, you get a temporary spike in your blood pressure which is why you should talk to your doctor before doing this method if you have high blood pressure issues. You should also only need to do this exercise once if your increased heart rate persists talk to your doctor about it to see what they suggest.
Splashing or dipping your face in ice water can help lower your heart rate by setting off the dive reflex. This reflex slows down your body’s metabolism so that you can survive under cold water for a longer period which in turn lowers your heart rate.
Taking CBD Oil
While CBD oil doesn’t lower heart rate directly through interacting with the cardiovascular system, if your heart rate is increased due to anxiety it can help. Cannabidiol interacts with the brain’s “fight or flight” system, helping to reduce anxiety. The quickest methods to get relief are by using tinctures, oral sprays, vapor, or concentrates.