This post is to create awareness about intense anxiety, it's effects and role of psychologist/therapist in it.
Deepthi, 18 yr old medical college student was rushed to the hospital, midnight with symptoms of chest pain, rapid heart pounding, sweating, trembling of hands and legs. She experienced tightness in the throat and chills running through her body. Her mother brought her suspecting heart-attack.
She was taken to the emergency care for examination. The doctor checked her found that she was physically very normal. He spoke to her for quite some time and her symptoms reduced. He gave her a vitamin injection. He suggested the parent to take her to a psychologist and she was sent back home.
Deepthi, ,had a panic attack. She had her semester examination in a week’s time and so was in too much of stress and anxiety as she had lot of subjects/syllabus to study. She was worried about her performance results. Her mother was a strict parent and was expecting a lot of marks from her. All this was a threat to her which was expressed through physical symptoms.
To help a person experiencing panic attacks a psychologist needs to address it from the root i.e work on her/his thoughts and emotions. S/he can be encouraged to talk more about their perception of the event causing the anxiety. A trained therapist can encourage them to draw, paint images and also write about their anxiety, to promote emotional healing. The therapist can also encourage role play sessions where the client can speak to her/his trouble and ease her/his mind. They can also make models or figures to represent their anxiety and re-frame them into positive ones.
The psychologist can also speak to the client’s family to not keep too much expectations on the client as every individual has her/his own way of functioning.
Swathi Priya. P