Two Parts:Reacting Quickly to Fainting SpellsPrevention
Being prone to fainting is known as suffering from fainting spells or syncope. It's not that uncommon––indeed, fainting spells are experienced by around a third of healthy adolescents.Fainting is a frightening experience, and if you experience it often, it can lead to much anxiety and stress. Being prone to fainting places you in danger of hurting yourself because it can happen at any moment. Read below the jump for information on dealing with fainting spells, hopefully making your next spell a bit safer.
Part 1 of 2: Reacting Quickly to Fainting Spells
Know what to do to stay safe when you feel faint. Feeling faint can happen at almost any time. If you don't do the right thing at the right time, you may severely injure yourself. It is recommended that you go through each of the following steps when you faint, to reduce the risks involved with a fainting spell:
- Sit down. Not sitting means you risk falling and cracking open your head on something sharp or hard, or worse. Don't do anything before you sit down.
- Breathe deeply. If you are dealing with anxiety, stress or hyperventilating at the moment, then deep, slow breathing should help you within seconds.
- Call for help. Yell as loudly as you can. You may feel like you're talking very quietly because what is happening to you is taking precedence over your hearing. Don't worry; just keep calling for someone until you think you have their attention.
- If someone does come, tell them that you're going to faint. They will be able to do whatever they can.
- Find a place to elevate your feet. This will help you become conscious faster.
- Remain calm. If you can, develop some self-calming techniques that will help you both when you're suffering a fainting spell, and in general. Such things as meditation, visualizing a safe place and repetitive phrases can help you to self soothe.
Be prepared when you become conscious again. Fainting is definitely scary, that's why when you wake up, you might scream and/or feel disoriented. Just be calm, you're okay. There is a chance that you've urinated.
- Take some time and lie down or sit up and rest.
- When you're ready, get up slowly.
- If you are alone, try and find someone for help.
Tell your doctor that you've fainted. He or she will need to check all the possible reasons behind why you are fainting. Be sure to see a doctor; having the right advice can be helpful because you can work out what to avoid doing that might be causing you to faint.
Part 2 of 2: Prevention
Research the topic of fainting. Understanding the causes behind fainting and feeling dizzy can help you to pinpoint the times when you're likely to be most vulnerable and whether there are things you can do to manage the likelihood of more fainting spells. There are many reasons why you might be fainting, from standing up too quickly to having low blood pressure. Here are some reasons you might be fainting:
- Abnormally low blood pressure
- Vasovagal syncope
- Heart attack
- Abnormal heart rhythm
- Getting up too fast
- Dehydration or inadequate food intake.
Recognize when you're starting to feel faint. Recognizing an oncoming faint may save your life, or at least prevent injury, enabling you to quickly move to a safe spot and perhaps even give a signal to friends and family in-the-know. There are lots of ways to recognize the onset of a fainting spell. If you keep feeling these symptoms while you're standing, it's best to sit down immediately:
- Seeing white or black spots
- Feeling hot/sweating
- Upset stomach
- Tunnel or blurry vision.
Learn how to prevent fainting. If you have already fainted, you'll know it's not a fun experience. For some people, you might faint 10 times in your whole lifetime. Others, that learn the prevention techniques before fainting for the second time, will experience fainting spells less. You may be able to stop fainting spells by making the right changes to your activities and food and water intake. For example:
- Improve your fluid intake. Staying adequately hydrated will keep your body in balance. In particular, stay hydrated when you're going outside on a warm or hot day.
- Eat enough and eat healthily. If you're getting enough food with good nutrition, you'll be less likely to feel weak or dizzy.
- Be slow when getting up from sitting or lying anywhere. Sudden rising can send you off-balance easily. It can help to sit where you can see something to hold on to, giving you something to grip or rest on to help keep you steady as you rise.
- Avoid cigarettes, caffeine, alcohol, or using recreational drugs. The chemicals in these products can have unhelpful interactions with your body that put things out of balance, making fainting spells more likely.
- Avoid placing yourself in stressful situations. In particular, notice whenever you are in a situation that brings on hyperventilation and anxiety and do your best to remove yourself from such situations. Learning to stay calm and to assert yourself can help you to overcome feelings of anxiety.