Natural Home Remedies for Panic Disorder

Panic Disorder describes repeated panic attacks and the accompanying fear of more.

A photo of a forest trail through the forest in autumn

You are more likely to be diagnosed with this disorder if it causes you to avoid otherwise safe situations that may precipitate a panic attack. Your doctor would test for many other medical conditions including heart problems, asthma, and seizure disorders.

WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS?

You would have some of the following symptoms.

  • Chest pain
  • Dizziness
  • Dry mouth
  • Excessive sweating
  • Feelings of suffocation
  • Headache
  • Insomnia
  • Muscle tension
  • Rapid heart rate, sweating, shaking
  • Shortness of breath
  • Your heart may be pounding or you may feel that it is beating irregularly.

PREVALENCE

It is estimated that every year about 1.7% of the US adult population suffers from panic disorder. Women are twice as likely as men to experience this disorder.

ALLOPATHIC TREATMENT

Physicians may prescribe medications to treat this disorder. Home support would be essentially the same as for panic attacks.

SELF TREATMENT

DIET

A healthy immune system is always the first line of defense against disease and it is important for emotional disturbances as well. When hormones are imbalanced, you are more likely to fall prey to any number of physical and emotional dysfunctions. To promote a healthy immune system, it is important to eat a balanced diet, with as much variety as you can manage, with lots of whole, fresh vegetables and fruits, quality protein and healthy sources of monounsaturated fat. The Zone is an excellent nutrition plan.

FOODS THAT MAY PROMOTE HEALING:

  • Antioxidant-rich foods
  • Bone Broth
  • High protein foods to stimulate dopamine
  • Omega 3-rich foods
  • Turkey and other tryptophan-rich foods
  • Vitamin B-rich foods

FOODS AND OTHER SUBSTANCES TO AVOID

  • Alcohol
  • Caffeine
  • Processed meats
  • Sugar
  • Tobacco

TEAS AND OTHER LIQUIDS

  • Chamomile tea
  • Green tea for the L-theanine

HERBS AND SPICES

Herbs and spices can have a powerful effect on the body. If you are under the care of a physician, and especially if you are taking prescription drugs, be sure to ask your doctor about the safety of your home treatments.

  • Ashwagandha (herb)
  • Kava Root
  • Lemon balm (but too much can increase anxiety)
  • Passionflower
  • Valerian is sedating (capsule, tincture or tea, which is bitter)

ESSENTIAL OILS, TOPICAL

It is safest to use carrier oils when applying essential oils to the skin. Some are safe undiluted, but only in small amounts for short periods.

  • Angelica
  • Basil
  • Bergamont oil
  • Cedarwood
  • Chamomile
  • Clary sage
  • Frankincense
  • Geranium
  • Grapefruit
  • Jasmine
  • Lemon
  • Lime
  • Neroli
  • Orange
  • Peppermint
  • Rose; a few drops in a foot bath
  • Rosemary
  • Sandalwood
  • Vetiver
  • Ylang Ylang

OTHER SUBSTANCES AND SUPPLEMENTS

If you are under the care of a doctor, and especially if you are taking prescription drugs, consult your doctor about the supplements you take.

  • Lavender capsules
  • Magnesium supplement
  • Omega 3’s are said to protect against depression. Cold water fish, like salmon, are the best source. Anchovies, sardines and mussels also have O-3.
  • Vitamin B
  • Calcium
  • Theanine
  • Vitamin D

HYDRATION

Water is essential and a main nutrient for the human body. Without it, you cannot survive for many days. Staying hydrated is fundamental for a healthy body, so how much is enough? There are so many differences in people (i.e., how much we sweat), as well as the diets we consume (a lot of water comes from healthy, whole foods), but a general rule is to consume enough water that your urine is clear, but not so much that you dilute your nutrients. If you are taking certain supplements that make your urine yellow, then you can start out with the formula of drinking ½ ounce to 1 ounce of water for each pound you weigh. If you weigh 130 pounds, drink 65 to 130 ounces of water a day. Definitely drink when you are thirsty.

EXERCISE

That exercise is beneficial is undisputed. If you are ill, you will want to take it easy, of course, but there is always something you can do to support your body. Do what you can do without making yourself feel worse. Be sensible.

EMOTIONAL SUPPORT

  • Distract yourself with something different than that to which you are reacting. Play a computer game, hold an ice cube in your hand for as long as you can, do some work, call a friend and talk about something else entirely.
  • Face your fears. Don’t do dangerous things but if you are afraid of ordinary things that are part of most of our lives, do them; you may come to realize that they aren’t going to topple you and the fear will have less power over you.
  • Meditation
  • Practice relaxation exercises.
  • Take a walk in the woods.
  • Yoga

OTHER THINGS YOU CAN DO

  • If you drink excess alcohol, wean yourself from it slowly.
  • Slowly cut back on heavy use of caffeine.
  • Quit smoking.
  • Before bathing, dry brush your skin to help eliminate toxins.
  • Practice slow, deep breathing.
  • Take a walk in the woods.

ALTERNATIVE THERAPIES

CAUTIONS

If you have repeated panic attacks, you should visit a doctor to determine if you have this disorder or if the symptoms are from another condition.

PREVENTION

  • Stay calm.
  • Eat well.
  • Exercise regularly.
  • Minimize stress in your life by avoiding situations to which you respond with anxiety, as well as avoiding people to whom you respond with anxiety.

 

SHARE