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How do paper bags help with panic attacks?

105 Answers
Last Updated: 06/22/2020 at 5:19pm
1 Tip to Feel Better
United States
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Top Rated Answers
December 30th, 2015 9:39pm
By reducing the amount of oxygen into your brain, the amount of spiraling thoughts can be reduced. I have not tried it personally, but I have heard it helps!
December 31st, 2015 5:17pm
The paper bags help slow your breathing down, which helps you feel more relaxed when dealing with the situation.
January 1st, 2016 8:26am
They say it helps you with hyperventilating. That the air flow of it should calm you down. That the way you are breathing in and out of the paper bag should help your heart rate slow down.
January 2nd, 2016 6:05am
One of the symptoms of panic attacks is rapid breathing, which can lead to hyperventilation if left unchecked. Breathing into a paper bag limits the amount of air you can take in, reducing the chance of hyperventilation.
January 2nd, 2016 10:51pm
Paper bags help control breathing and hyperventilating. They re a source for advanced in control & technical breathing skills.
January 3rd, 2016 5:08am
Paper bags cause you to intake a certain amount of the carbon dioxide that you breath out, the paper bag traps this air and helps you calm your breathing.
January 6th, 2016 2:34am
They can help control hyperventilation when you repeatedly breathe into them. They don't work for everyone though.
January 6th, 2016 11:47pm
When you are having a panic attack, you can begin to hyperventilate. This causes a low level of carbon dioxide in the blood, which can add to everything already happening. By breathing into a bag, you are able to raise your CO2 levels in your blood and feel better very quickly.
January 6th, 2016 11:58pm
A paper bags helps regulate by regulating and increasing the carbon dioxide levels in the blood. Therefore, getting the oxygen to be able to breathe.
January 7th, 2016 7:20am
Paper bags help with panic attacks because the amount of breath you can fit into the bag helps you focuse on your breathing.
January 8th, 2016 10:57am
Breathing into a paper bag requires concentration and helps a person to take note of their breathing, which helps regulate the respiratory rate that is disturbed by panic attacks. Though this may work for some, it is not recommended because it can cause a lack of oxygen in the brain and loss of consciousness. If you use a paper bag to help with your panic attacks, keep track of your breaths. Do not breathe more than 10 times into a paper bag before taking a deep breath away from the bag.
January 8th, 2016 1:33pm
Using a paper bag during a panic attack is only beneficial to some. It is like a reminder to keeping breathing- in and out in and out. However for more extreme panic attacks, it doesn't always help.
January 8th, 2016 6:41pm
Breathing into a paper bag helps to slow your breathing. When you are able to control your breathing, it's what your currently concentrating on and that helps to alleviate the panic attack.
January 8th, 2016 11:42pm
When you have a panic attack, you may experience shortness of breath which in it's turn can cause dizziness. This occurs due to inhaling too much oxyge . If you breathe in a paper bag, the bag will be filled with carbon dioxide which is exhaled. That hinders the dizziness during a panic attack
January 14th, 2016 3:28am
Depends on you, really. They might not even remotely be useful, or you might be able to use them to throw up into if you feel utterly horrible.
January 17th, 2016 3:06am
No, I don't think so, at least it doesn't work for me. I usually just literally plug my earphones in and listen to music, because music really helps me calm down. Using paper bags might help though, it's just not the way for me. :)
January 22nd, 2016 9:48pm
Breathing into a paper bag will reduce the amount of oxygen you're absorbing. This can be useful in panic attacks where hyperventilation is occurring: hyperventilation can cause an oxygen head rush which can cause the attack to spiral out of control. By using the paper bag to breathe into, you restrict that effect and become able to breathe more normally, producing a calming effect.
January 28th, 2016 2:05am
to be honest, i think paper bags are an ineffective way to manage panic attacks. i guess it does show you how you are breathing, but i think they arent much use at all.
February 2nd, 2016 5:24pm
The idea is to control your breathing. The paper bag makes it easier to take deep breaths in and out as needed. (side note: Makes the air warmer as well so its easier to go in and out) :)
February 6th, 2016 2:24am
Breathing through your nose and blowing the air into a paper bag to inflate it helps the person focus on their breathing, taking the time to breathe deeper and slower, helping them to relax.
February 7th, 2016 6:50pm
Paper bags help when you are hyperventilating, not everyone hyperventilates however some people hold their breaths. What that paler bag does is it gives carbon bag into your cycle so you slow your breathing it's important to remember take a limited amount of breaths, cause use it too much can cause you to pass out. For example I use mine for 5 times and tale a 3 time break
February 10th, 2016 10:16am
They help to regulate your breathing, as you are limited to a certain amount of oxygen, stopping you from hyperventilation.
February 10th, 2016 2:43pm
They help by replacing excess oxygen in your body with carbon dioxide and bring your body back into balance, helping to reduce the symptoms of panic.
February 29th, 2016 4:37pm
It helps to control hyperventilation which is a contingency during panic attacks. If you take a small paper bag, and take 6 to 12 easy, natural breaths, with the bag held over your mouth and nose, it can slow down your heart pace and ease the anxiety triggers. :)
March 14th, 2016 6:40pm
you can regulate your breathing using one. you take deep breaths and visualize how much you're taking in and out to help you slow down your breathing and get more air in.
March 16th, 2016 3:22am
When controlling your breathing with a paper bag you can see how fast your breathing and how much air you take in.
March 17th, 2016 1:40am
Well, you will be able to breathe in more calmly as you will be able to hear your breathing. And when you concentrate on your breathing, your mind gets occupied with the breathing more than the problem that causes the pain attack.
March 19th, 2016 9:09am
When people get anxiety attacks they tend to 'over-breathe'. This removes a lot of the carbon dioxide in the body, so the level of carbon dioxide in the blood is lower and that makes them feel worse! Breathing into a paper bag for half a dozen or so breaths builds up the carbon dioxide in your body again, so you should immediately start feeling better!
March 23rd, 2016 7:58pm
It helps to make sure you have a steady breathing pattern and that you don't breathe too fast which causes hyperventilating
March 24th, 2016 2:50pm
They can help guide you to breathe in and out fully,instead of taking short panicky breaths. Your brain needs oxygen to function, so deep breathing can be really helpful.