By Jackie Edwards:
Let’s face it: being a Mom is a hard job — even when you love it and life is good, there still may be many sleepless nights, dealing with toddler tantrums or teenage dramas, and multitasking. Making dinner while breastfeeding a baby and listening to another child do his/her reading homework? Easy peasy! Or is it? Many moms are juggling so many demands on their time and attention that they may feel as if they are the proverbial circus act, just trying to keep all the plates spinning without letting any come crashing down.
Sometimes the stress of trying to do it all or to be the perfect mom can become overwhelming; anxiety can set in and can even cause a panic attack. This in itself often causes more anxiety: you don’t want to scare your kids and you want to keep everything running smoothly; you become more anxious about it all, and it becomes a vicious cycle.
Where to Turn
Your general practitioner is a great place to start — severe cases of anxiety or panic attacks may require prescription medication, but often a more natural therapeutic approach can be beneficial and be kinder to the body.
In terms of general anxiety, there are many natural avenues to explore. Doctors have found that essential oils can be helpful in treating and preventing anxiety, either through aromatherapy, topical application or (in certain FDA approved cases) ingestion. Simple breathing exercises can be very effective also, either as a daily practice coupled with relaxing meditation, or as a calming technique to use when panic starts to rise.
Identifying the Cause
Panic attacks often are triggered by something in your past, which you many times may not even be aware of. For example, in cases of PTSD, a noise or smell associated with the traumatic event might induce an attack. In these cases, hypnotherapy can prove a valuable tool in helping to identify the trigger of your panic attack and changing your response to it.
Some people respond well to therapy — either a cognitive behavioral type, a deeper psychotherapy to explore possible triggers from the past, or life-coaching to help with life management to better reduce stress and anxiety.
Whichever route you choose to take, know that you are not alone! Often, the simple act of talking through your fears and concerns with a friend, spouse or therapist can be enough to help you realize that you are doing better than you think, and that many other moms are feeling the exact same way.