About Panic Attacks & Freespira
Freespira is an FDA-cleared, medication-free treatment for panic disorder and panic symptoms, including panic attacks. Patients who have panic attacks that occur with anxiety disorders such as PTSD, GAD and Specific Phobias, as well as Depression can also be treated. The Freespira Program is authorized by a clinician and the patient completes their sessions at-home over 4 weeks. Freespira is a safe and effective treatment that can be used as a standalone treatment or in conjunction with other treatments, such as medications, TMS or psychotherapy as recommended by your doctor.
Panic attacks have a physiological component
Panic attacks are common. There are 27 million American adults who experience panic attacks each year and almost 7 million experience frequent panic attacks, are afraid of having more panic attacks and avoid situations, places and activities due to their fear. This condition is called panic disorder.
You may already know that when you breathe in, your lungs take in oxygen, and then you exhale carbon dioxide (CO2). Research has shown that most people who suffer from panic attacks have irregular breathing patterns and/or hyperventilate (over-breathe) all of the time, not just when they are having a panic attack. This breathing pattern leads to lower than normal CO2 levels in the exhaled breath. Low exhaled carbon dioxide sets off a cascade of effects that reinforce and exacerbate the sense of panic that can create a vicious cycle: you feel panicked so you hyperventilate. Hyperventilation causes low CO2, which in turn makes you feel even more out of breath, dizzy, lightheaded, nauseous – and panicky – which sets the stage for triggering a panic attack, whether prompted by perception of an external threat – such as crowded elevator or an internal threat, such as a sensation of breathlessness or chest tightness.
Freespira directly corrects the key physiological aspect of panic attacks and other symptoms of panic disorder – chronic hyperventilation. Freespira teaches you to stabilize your breathing patterns and increase your exhaled CO2 levels into the normal range to correct the hyperventilation and reduce or eliminate panic attacks. Freespira is not used during a panic attack, it is used over the four-week period to correct irregular breathing and prevent future panic symptoms and panic attacks.