There are some very simple techniques you can learn to use and manage those episodes to restore calm. Applying pressure to particular points in your body is one of the easiest, discrete ways to do this.
For the management of anxiety and panic Healthline suggests the following pressure points:
- Hall of impression point
which is directly between the eyes, at the very top of the bridge of the nose
- Heavenly gate point,
located near where your thumb is when you grab the top of the ear
- Shoulder well point
found on both sides of the upper back where the shoulders meet the neck
- Inner frontier gate point
which lies below the inside of the wrist approximately three finger widths
- Union valley point
in the webbing between the thumb and index finger
- Great surge point
on the top of both feet approximately 1-2 inches back from where the big toe and second toe
Is it just hoo-ha, or does it really work? The use of pressure points (acupressure) has been studied in various settings. One such, a 2012 study published in the Journal of PeriAnesthesia involved 70 subjects who were experiencing anxiety prior to undergoing abdominal surgery.
The control group received acupressure at sham points. The intervention group received acupressure on two specific acupressure points. Both groups reported a reduction in pre-surgery anxiety. However, theintervention group showed a statistical difference that was found to be clinically beneficial.
So how do you do it? It really is very simple.
Get comfortable and relax. You might want to lie down with your eyes closed. And do some deep breathing. The pressure is applied with your fingers, usually the thumb. it should be firm and deep. You know you’ve hit the right spot if it is sore. Apply pressure for several seconds, up to 2 minutes. This is one treatment you can’t overdose on. Do it as often as necessary.
There is a lot of information on the net and YouTube about the various acupressure points that are helpful in the management of anxiety and panic. This is just one of them.
And here’s a video for those who like visuals:
Rhythmic breathing is a core practice when it comes to meditation and yoga. When combined with acupressure specific breathing techniques enhance the efficacy even more. One of my favourites is the 4-7-8 breath. The act of concentrating itself is akin to Mindfulness. You cannot think of other things at the same time.
Acupressure can be used for many different conditions. Google it and you will be amazed.
The 4-7-8 breathing technique can help with reducing anxiety and falling asleep. It’s very simple. Empty your lungs first. Then take a deep breath in counting slowly to 4. Hold for the count of 7. Release to the count of 8.
Dr. Andrew Weil teaches the 4-7-8 breathing technique, which he believes can help with the following:
- reducing anxiety
- helping a person get to sleep
- managing cravings
- controlling or reducing anger responses