TikTok psychologist shares tips for managing panic attacks: ‘I never thought it would work but it did’

Dr. Janine Kreft is a licensed clinical psychologist who takes a holistic and spiritual approach to her work. Dr. Kreft’s TikTok is a resource for anyone who wants simple advice for managing stress, anxiety and other mental health issues. 

Her tips range from learning how to ask for a personal day off from work to helping a friend get through a panic attack via text message. According to the Mayo Clinic, a panic attack is a “sudden episode of intense fear that triggers severe physical reactions when there is no real danger or apparent cause.”

But a friend isn’t always available exactly at the moment they’re needed. So if you’re alone, you’ll want to check out Dr. Kreft’s video on two ways to manage a panic attack quickly and all by yourself. 

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“As a trauma-informed therapist, we see the root of panic attacks as unprocessed trauma in the body and a dysregulated nervous system,” she explains

The first strategy she says is to think cold.

“Anything that is going to command your energy back in your sensory body,” she said. “So think cold showers, holding ice cube, ice pack on the back of your neck, submerging your face in cold water — you get it.” 

The second tip is to think like an animal. 

“After a fight or flight response, they shake or tremor to discharge the adrenaline in their body,” she said. “So shake your limbs out, dance, get weird.” 

Dr. Kreft’s advice received 71.4 thousand TikTok views. 

“I was having a panic attack. My hubby remembered these tips and put ice on my neck and back. I never thought it would work but it did,” one user commented

“Ecstatic dancing has really helped me recover from anxiety much quicker then if I just control my breathing,” another wrote

“Yes! Cold always works for me,” someone added

Interested in more ways to combat anxiety? Check out ways to reduce your anxiety using your 5 senses according to a therapist.

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