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How To Manage Panic Attacks In The Elderly

Here's Your Guide To Understanding Panic Attacks

Newsweek AMPLIFY-  Panic attacks

Alyssa, a 54-year-old widow, volunteered thrice a week at a home for the aged that was near her home. It fulfilled her desire to help people and be a good, productive member of society. She has become good friends with some of the seniors and enjoyed playing BINGO and chatting with them.

One day, while crossing the bridge that connects her subdivision with the city, she suddenly felt an overwhelming shadow of dread overcoming her. Her heart started pounding violently and her hands had started to shake uncontrollably. She thought she was having a heart attack.

However, as soon as she got over the bridge, she started feeling much better. She was able to stop shaking and was able to collect her wits.

She was always curious about this moment since it had only happened once in her life so far and without any special reason. She doesn't think it was a heart attack but she has no other idea what it could be.

Alex had moderate dementia and lived with his daughter Jo. Jo and Alex had developed a great system of distributing the responsibilities of the house among themselves since Alex had much intact long-term memory left.

Alex used to manage well but lately had been pestering Jo of stories of aliens invading their neighbor's farm. Many a night has Jo been awoken by a sweaty Alex who kept repeating that he had to protect her from being beamed by the mothership.

One day, she saw a couple of police cars surrounding her neighbor's farm. Jo was curious as to what had happened but she didn't want to intrude with the police at work so she checked with her dad instead. She saw Alex sitting on their front porch muttering that he had sent the aliens away for good.

Jo didn't believe that aliens had really taken over the farm next-door especially when she heard from the store that a meth lab was the reason that farm was closed down but she always did wonder what gave her dad the idea that there were aliens running about their area.

Would you believe that Alex and Alyssa's seemingly irrational fears have one explanation?: Panic attacks.

What is a Panic Attack?

A panic attack can happen at any time. Some experience it only once in their entire lifetime while for others, it can come frequently. Attacks can manifest at any age and are twice as common in women.

Statistics show that 3 to 14 % of older Americans have a diagnosable anxiety disorder. Moreover, more than 27% who are under home care services have symptoms of anxiety that may not be enough to diagnose them with a disorder but are enough to significantly impact their functioning negatively.

Newsweek AMPLIFY-  Panic attacks

Leading Causes Of Panic Attacks In The Elderly

Loss of a Spouse

Daily routines are interrupted by the loss of a partner. Family roles become redefined and a grieving spouse may a loss of purpose.

The surviving member may develop a disinterest in normal activities, a major decrease in appetite, and these can cause an imbalance in one's brain function and trigger a panic response.

The bereaved may also experience overwhelming regret, fear, and/or guilt from milestones/wishes that weren't met or fulfilled by their significant other when they were still alive

Failing Health

When older adults face health issues related to their old age, it is normal for them to experience feelings of fear and uncertainty. With the coronavirus pandemic disrupting normal activities and forcing a new normal on everyone's routines, their fear of being infected may cause compounded stress that can trigger some panic attacks at home.

Diseases that cause cognitive declines like Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and dementia can also cause a patient to be agitated and distressed and lead to panic attacks. Similarly, a combination of medication-related side effects can cause disruptions in metabolism and induce panic attacks.

Elderly Depression

Mayo Clinic online published that late-life depression affects about 6 million Americans, ages 65 and older with only 10 % receiving treatment. Depression in the elderly is often misdiagnosed as an effect of multiple illnesses and the different medicine used to treat them.

Introspection and looking back on past events are more common as you grow older, elderly adults may recall memories of previously repressed traumas that may not have been addressed. This can create disruptive emotional upheaval and trigger panic attacks that will come across as out of the blue for the people around them since no clear trigger can be identified.

Newsweek AMPLIFY-  Panic attacks

What Can I Do?

When addressing anxiety in older adults, it is important to consider that they have access to proper nutrition, hydration, and regular physical activity as part of their comprehensive treatment.

You can also invest in CBD Tinctures like Calm by Wellness' Peppermint-flavored Hemp CBD Oil Tincture. Tinctures are highly concentrated and are placed under the tongue for 30-60 seconds before swallowing. This type of ingestion is much easier for the body to break down is effective for helping with anxiety.

When someone you see someone you love having trouble concentrating, going on, and on about things that don't make sense to you, clutching their chest while sweating, etc., they may be having a panic attack. Here's what you should remember to help them calm down.

  • Don't panic. You cannot give in to their own fears and you should do everything possible to ensure that you remain collected.
  • Be gentle. Use a soft, soothing voice when addressing the person panicking.
  • Go together to a safe, quiet place where they can sit or lie down.
  • Help the person go through breathing exercises like emphatic inhaling and exhaling and counting to 10 with each breath.
  • You can paint a picture of a place you think they would be happy in. Use imagery such as, "We are on a little hill, listening to the whispers of the wind. You see bright flowers all over the meadow and hear the faint tweeting of small birds.

Help your loved ones put their minds at ease when you buy this Peppermint CBD Oil Tincture.

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