PDA

View Full Version : Panic Attack


KniftyKnitterGal
07-07-2008, 08:44 PM
I have been having some panic attacks for a couple weeks now. I absolutely dread it. Has anyone had this? Anybody have any pointers?
:help:

LilHuskiesFootBallMom
07-07-2008, 08:48 PM
yep, i dealt with panic attacks for a number of years, still have them periodically but they're not as bad as they used to be (celexa was my friend for a few years... I can't take xithromax because of migraines).

First thing to do is figure out what triggers them for you, then work through that slowly.

Yoga, meditation, and visualization also help when you have them. Picture yourself up in the mountains surrounded by trees, slight breeze, just enough to stir up some light waves on the beautiful lake you're facing with the sun sparkling on the water. breathe in for 5, out for 7, then in for 6, out for 8, keep going at in 6 out 8 until you calm down.

Wanda Witch
07-07-2008, 08:57 PM
Yes. Has your blood sugar been checked? Such as for hypoglycemia? I experienced terrible attacks some years ago. I would get all fuzzy-minded (oh, goodness, what's new?), shaky, sweaty, sort of spacey. When I told my very attentive doctor in Las Vegas about this she immediately (after other 'remarks' made over a period of time she had logged) ordered a glucose intolerance test. Sure enough, hypoglycemia. In fact, over a period of about seven years she ordered another one. Same thing. Diet, watching all carbs, etc., did help. Not an answer, I am certain, but there can be many reasons for panic attacks. I actually used to classify mine as 'anxiety' attacks. Something to ponder though and to bring up with a trusted doctor WHO will listen to your symptoms. I have to say, no gender bias meant, women M.D,'s are a lot better at listening to symptoms of a woman patient than a male. Our hormones can drive us up the wall, and yet even now, at a very, shall I say, 'advanced' age I now and then still experience some anxiety. Some drugs can help (which I also take - Lexapro -) but I am not suggesting that unless your physican suggests such. Good luck. I know what a bummer it can be - hate to say it - but been there, etc. :thumbsup:

saracidaltendencies
07-07-2008, 09:32 PM
I have had horrible panic attacks, even as recently as a few months ago. Most of the time I can control them by focusing on my breathing and thinking of good memories, things that make me smile or laugh. However, sometimes no matter what I do I can't make the panic attack go away and I just have to let it run its course. Usually they aren't too terribly bad, but I hate the ones where I could swear up and down that I was dying.

Mine usually occur at night, when I'm lying in bed trying to go to sleep. That's usually the only time my mind can really wander and sometimes that's totally not a good thing.

If yours happen at night, maybe try drinking some chamomile or Sleepy Time tea and take a hot bath before bed. Anything that will relax you and help relieve stress. Also, this may sound kind of dumb, but, for x-mas, my mom and dad got me a stocking stuffer: hand held 20 Questions...lol...I swear, I play that when I lie down at night and after about 4 rounds of it, I am OUT! What's nice about the game is it forces you to concentrate on whatever object/animal, etc. you thought of for the game and it really helps clear your mind. I also, occasionally, fall asleep with the game still in my hand...lol...It has a nifty little backlight so you can play it lying down with the lights off. I don't know if that'll help you or not, but, I haven't had one late night (or any for that matter) panic attacks since Christmas!

KniftyKnitterGal
07-07-2008, 09:35 PM
Thanks guys for the help. I really appreciate it. I do know what triggers my panic attacks. I think it is because I love my boyfriend so much that I am in fear of losing him. I guess my sub conscience got the best of me and that's how the panic attacks started. :oops:
Sometimes I am afraid to see my boyfriend because I'm afraid it will start up again. I'm going to see someone on Wednesday, so hopefully this will all go away soon.

Mike
07-07-2008, 10:08 PM
I had them as far back as I can remember (long before they had a name). Then I went so long without any that I forgot I had them, when they came back they got out of hand because I wasn't prepared for them and didn't recognize them.
That's why I started crochet.
So you already do that pointer. Knit and crochet more :)

I made a CD recording of me talking myself out of the negative thoughts. I played it while I slept and I got a Walkman to play it while I went out (I got so bad I couldn't leave the house).
I used a CDRW so when I came up with something new I could add it.
I also made a bunch of print outs I left around the house to change my thinking from the negative thoughts to positive ones. (Like when I would think, "I don't feel good" I changed it to, "I feel fine".)

If you have a bathroom problem you can take Imodium as a precautionary drug. Finding out where the bathrooms are when you go out will probably help.

Here's a website/forum. http://www.panicsurvivor.com/
I don't go there any more because group therapy is the worst thing for me unless I'm doing worse than those I'm talking to. I never had a problem with flying until I heard other PD people say why they had problems with it and their reasons made perfect sense, if you have an attack on the plane you can't run off. :)
Good thing I don't fly or else I'd have to take Xanax to get on the plane now.

I haven't been to a shrink but self-diagnosed I have Panic Disorder and not General Anxiety Disorder. Doctors seem to want you to have GAD because it's easier to understand.

auntcrafty
07-08-2008, 08:08 AM
Yes -- my panic attacks are a symptom of an allergic reaction. If I eat or am exposed to corn derived products, I get the sweating/racing heart/fight or flight response.

kristaj
07-08-2008, 11:00 AM
I'm so sorry! I've had horrible anxiety attacks while I was suffering from post partum depression. I've always had anxiety problems, but post baby took them to a whole new level. It got to the point where I was seeing things happen that weren't really happening, like my son falling out of my arms over a third story railing at a mall, or the worst was we were at a stop light and I actually saw two men breaking into my car to hijack it and my children. The only way I ended up stopping them was Paxil with occasional Xanax. I have tried going off meds since my children are now a little older and am past all the post partum periods, but have found that while it doesn't come back at the ultra horrible hallucinating level I still have more anxiety than I can handle, so I stay on a lower dose of Paxil and probably will forever. It just makes me feel like I am "me" again. I know that meds are not for everyone, but I am glad that you are going to a doctor. If nothing else talking about it helps. Also, walking/exercise are supposed to be really good for anxiety and depression. Honestly the best thing that has happened to my mild anxiety that I still have occasionally even on Paxil has been learning to knit this past winter. It calms me down more than anything. Hope you find relief. I'll be thinking of you. :hug:

sylvia
07-08-2008, 11:06 AM
i had them for many years
now not so much
you can feel it coming on
remember it is anxiety and it wont kill you
dont get frightened and dont fight it
it will ease off
try to distract yourself
what ever works for you
sylvia

gailf
07-08-2008, 11:35 AM
I took Xanex for a while whne my mother was in the hospital with terminal cancer. I knew that was the trigger but it didnt stop the attacks from happening. Just knowing I had the Xanex and could stop it, calmed me down enough and sometimes I didnt even need to take it.
Also someone told me to try Bach Flower Rescue Remedy.

KnitWit1987
07-08-2008, 04:34 PM
Everyone in my family has had panic attacks. My mom started having them when I was about 5. Hers were so severe the doctors thought it was heart attacks. Anyway they figured out they were panic attacks and gave my mom xanax. She stayed on xanex for almost 10 years before it stopped working so they gave her valuim. At this point my mom is a totally different person because of this medicine. She once had to have surgery and they had to take her off of the valuim in order to do the surgery, she had such severe withdrawls I thought she was going to die. I realize that some people just cannot control it on their own and need medication. I ask anyone that is having panic attacks to please try everything else possible before using medication. Any doctor will tell you medicine is the answer, but very often its not. I encourage you to read the book Dont Panic: Taking Control of Anxiety Attacks by Reid Wilson. Fortantly I have been able to control mine with relaxation techniques and I hope you can too :hug:

Mike
07-08-2008, 05:29 PM
She once had to have surgery and they had to take her off of the valuim in order to do the surgery
That's odd, they had to give me valium to stop the panic attacks so they could do surgery.
Valium should be OK for surgery.

I ask anyone that is having panic attacks to please try everything else possible before using medication.
It takes time to try everything possible. Time spent panicking with no relief is a good way to let it get out of control.

Besides me not recognizing the panic attacks were back a major reason mine got so out of hand was because of the doctors not giving me Xanax and trying SSRI type drugs (I never got so far as to get into the actual SSRIs before I said no more) that take weeks to know if they are going to help or hurt.
That left me with debilitating panic for months which turned into agorophobia and the constant panic became a habit I couldn't break.
It was only after I got the Xanax that I was able to get back into the habit of leaving the house without fear of a panic attack.

Many panic people don't experience addiction to Xanax just like epileptics don't get addicted to Klonopin. A friend of my sister's was on Xanax daily, timed release for years and quit without a problem, I've had addiction issues with codeine after surgery and never had a problem with Xanax.
Panic people tend to under medicate rather than over medicate and just knowing they have the ability to stop a series of attacks in their pocket is enough without even taking the pill, so if it's prescribed as needed they tend to not take it unless they really need it.

I think taking it like your mother or my sister's friend were prescribed is the wrong way. The problem wasn't the drugs it was being prescribed them constantly for 10 years. They're a fast working short lasting drug meant to stop anxiety not prevent it.
Xanax taken as needed and coupled with exposure therapy and learning meditation techniques works.

Go ahead and try other routes but don't let it get out of hand while searching.

And doctors may be willing to hand Xanax to women but they sure don't seem willing to give it to men.

Plantgoddess+
07-08-2008, 10:44 PM
I had panic attacks when driving in the winter. My husband got me a used Subaru and that calmed them down to anxiety at driving in winter. I ended up on Paxil for depression and anxiety and it worked miracles. I ended up being the designated driver when my friends and I went up the mountain to go x-country skiing. I felt after a year I didn't need the Paxil anymore and the doctor suggested going to a half dose. That worked fine and after a few more months I just quit taking it. I have low level anxiety after about 5 years, but find it not out of the normal and don't feel I need any help for it.
Talk to your doctor and explore the options and drawbacks of various treatments. What works for one may not be at all appropriate for another.

KnittingNat
07-09-2008, 05:57 AM
Thanks guys for the help. I really appreciate it. I do know what triggers my panic attacks. I think it is because I love my boyfriend so much that I am in fear of losing him. I guess my sub conscience got the best of me and that's how the panic attacks started. :oops:
Sometimes I am afraid to see my boyfriend because I'm afraid it will start up again. I'm going to see someone on Wednesday, so hopefully this will all go away soon.

Many here has replied about panic attacks and taking medicine for it. I'm in no way underestimating these ways to solve the problem, but the reason you're having them seems more important to me, IMHO. I had a boyfriend for 3 years when i was 19-22 and i loved him so much (or I thought i did) and every time we parted i used to cry and be depressed, exactly for the same reasons you're describing. When he eventually broke up with me, I was a mess - I cried for 2 months or so and thought that i will never find anyone to love me etc etc. After a while I met my DH and had no fears at all. I don't know anything about your relationship with you BF, but for me I found out that if I'm in constant fear of losing the person i'm with - something is not right in the relationship itself. If a couple is having a serious, mature relationship - both sides should feel secure about it. I can always go back to feeling bad every time my DH goes out to work, because many things can happen, but that's just fate - if i'll worry about it, i'll drive myself insane. Maybe you should have a serious talk with your BF, if it won't help - see a psychologist maybe and then resort to medicines. That's just my 2 cents. HTH :hug:

Hygiene Mama
07-09-2008, 07:11 AM
Yes, I have had several in my years. I'm actually on medication for it and they have dwindled almost to nothing...if I drink caffeine, I feel panicky,
I'm sorry and I hope you can resolve it soon!:muah:

iza
07-09-2008, 08:16 AM
I don't know anything about your relationship with you BF, but for me I found out that if I'm in constant fear of losing the person i'm with - something is not right in the relationship itself. If a couple is having a serious, mature relationship - both sides should feel secure about it. I can always go back to feeling bad every time my DH goes out to work, because many things can happen, but that's just fate - if i'll worry about it, i'll drive myself insane.

I so agree with you, KnittingNat. It's precisely what I think. I'm not sure panic attacks can be caused by "love". There is something else going on here, and I think it's important for you to find out. Sometimes medications are necessary, and if you need them, take them! But it's still important to identify the cause, and see if there are things you can do to avoid them without medication.

:hug: Take good care of yourself, and get the help you need! :heart:

Tropicflower24
07-09-2008, 02:08 PM
Several people in my family have panic attacks, and I don't think what I get is actaully "classified" as that, but I get really stressed out and really frustrated.....

Something you might try is Bach Rescue Remedy. It's an natural herbal stress releiver.... you can usaully find them at a health food store. They are a little pricy, but my family (9) has had the same bottle for about a year now, and we aren't through it yet. They have both daytime and nighttime formulas.

KniftyKnitterGal
07-09-2008, 03:35 PM
OK... So I went to the doctor today. Turns out I have an abandonment issue. This is caused by my depression which caused my panic attacks. So I need to sort out my depression. This also means that this has nothing to do with the relationship with my BF. I love him very much and he loves me, we never fight and I still get butterflies in my stomach when I think about him, even after 2 1/2 years! cloud9
The abandonment issue was caused from both my mother and father. Once I figure out my depression and such it will be over.
Thanks again guys for the help! :hug:

KnittingNat
07-09-2008, 04:17 PM
I'm glad you're getting to the root of it. Good luck and take care of yourself :hug:

rachael72knitter
07-11-2008, 04:15 PM
Hmmmm. . . I agree that one should figure out the cause for panic attacks, but I never did. It would just hit me like a ton of bricks and I literally had know idea where they came from or why. I wish I could have gone without taking a prescription for them. Though, I decided it would be better for me to take medicine for it since it can be very dangerous should you have one while you are driving and it wouldn't be good for anyone to pass out. I def. could since mine caused me to not take in air and hyperventilate or get dizzy. Plus, I wasn't sleeping and actually afraid to go to sleep because I was having them in my sleep. For me, the best choice was just getting rid of them with medicine.

Anywhoo- that was 6 years ago and I haven't had one since then. Apparantly it was a result of an imbalance/depression and not something I could just positive-energy-away.


Everyone has their own way of dealing with things and their own set of circumstances.

Puddinpop
07-12-2008, 05:25 PM
My doctor told me I had depression when I described how angry I would get and how I was feeling. He put me on Lexapro. The first night I was on it, I woke up with a panic attack. I didn't know what was going on, but my feet and hands were feeling like they were on fire. I didn't know you could be awaken from sleep with an attack. I told my doctor what happened and he said that this showed my medication was working. Oh, my husband calmed me down when it was happening. Once I realized it wasn't going to esculate into something else, I could calm down. It is really a strange feeling, isn't it.

rachael72knitter
07-13-2008, 11:11 AM
My doctor told me I had depression when I described how angry I would get and how I was feeling. He put me on Lexapro. The first night I was on it, I woke up with a panic attack. I didn't know what was going on, but my feet and hands were feeling like they were on fire. I didn't know you could be awaken from sleep with an attack. I told my doctor what happened and he said that this showed my medication was working. Oh, my husband calmed me down when it was happening. Once I realized it wasn't going to esculate into something else, I could calm down. It is really a strange feeling, isn't it.


Ohhhh its horrible! I actually think once I had my first one, it was a vicious cycle with more to come, b/c it was so bad, that I think I got attacks just thinking, "god. . .what if it happens again."

I literally thought I was dying, having a heart attack, losing my mind all at the same time. I don't wish them on anyone.

The.Knitter
07-13-2008, 11:22 AM
Bach also has a Rescue Remedy which is good. I use it when I am really stressed. Don't use it if you are planning on driving anywhere! It is all natural and non addictive. Good luck!

SBG
07-13-2008, 04:07 PM
My husband gets them. Rescue Remedy helps. It's homeopathic and non-addictive. Plus all the regular relaxation stuff. We get it at www.vitacost.com; that seems to be the cheapest place.

lelvsdgs
07-13-2008, 11:14 PM
I'm glad to see you've taken such positive steps to deal with your panic attacks.

I've had them for years and mine stem from some childhood abuse issues. I tried to tough it out but they just got worse. I can go years without having them and then they come back but with therapy and medication, they are usually under control.

My divorce triggered them again and recently, big changes at work coinciding with my daughter leaving home has kicked them up again. I found that once I knew what they actually were, I could "talk myself through them". I still use the medication when I need it.

Mike
07-14-2008, 12:20 AM
I found that once I knew what they actually were, I could "talk myself through them". I still use the medication when I need it.

I can do that too.

But before they had a name I found that they went away better longer than after they had a name.

I need to get a regular doctor who understands and is willing to give me Xanax. Eventually the bottle I carry around is going to be so worn and old that it won't be safe if I ever do need them.

Puddinpop
07-14-2008, 08:41 PM
I had an episode years ago, also, when my daughter was a baby. I was dealing with my sister-in-law who we found out has Scisophrenia. Anyway, it was July 4th and I just started feeling weird and my dad took me to the hospital. When I got there, I calmed down. My doctor asked if I was calm because I was at the hospital or what? I didn't know and he asked what was going on in my life. He gave me Xanax at the hospital and a prescription for a few more. We were leaving the hospital and it came on again. I felt like climbing the walls of the car and then I vomited violently. We got to the pharmacy and my dad got my prescription filled. I laid down when I got home and had the best sleep of my life! That medicine was awesome. Years later, my husband told me that I was probably having a panic attack.