People here have probabaly memorized my story, LOL!
But I suffer and am treated for clinical Depression and bi-polar; and panic attacks used to be a major part of that. They will still come out at times of (or after) extreme stress.
We used to think it was a blood sugar problem, because it greatly resembled whatwould happen to my diabetuc mother when she would "crash". Racing pusle, flushed face, sick to my stomach, dilated pupils - and then add in the intense need to escape.
The 2 scenarios bound to set it off more than any other were my church's "meet and greet" time - having to shake hadns with all of those strangers, and gorcery shopping - the thought thast strangers might be looking and talking about me. It was a very paranoid fed thing.
My psychiatrist prescribed Klonipin for immediate attacks, as well as daily meds for the depression and counseling.
I have them very rarely now. I was plagued by a recent round of them due to a violent episode with my son who has Asperger's syndrome. So that's what I mean by stress bringing them out, but for the mosdt part I can deal with them because of the therapy.
I have had varying forms of panic for many years, although thankfully not so much of late. I really, really believe that panic attacks have a function in that your body/mind is trying to get your attention. Something is not right in your life. In my case, it was suppressed grief and as soon as I "got the telegram" they subsided. The worst thing is the fear of the next one -- it's like you are tied up on the train track and u can see the train coming. Breathing into a paper bag is just NOT going to cut it, LOL!
I've also read that the typical panic profile is a perfectionist which totally fits me! And also the fear of shame. That is why we all rush to the washroom and are suddenly "okay" because there is no longer the risk of public 'disgrace.' I have done SO much reading on this, I could go on and on. I felt very isolated when it first started for me in the eighties and there was no internet support and even the doctor didn't know quite what to do with me. "Feel the Fear and do it anyway" (by Dr. Susan Jeffers) is a great book that really helped me. Even now I sometimes struggle with being away from home during holidays etc.
Michelle how are you doing on the Klonipin ? I did well on it but i was abusing it so it was stopped.I tend to abuse all my benzo's
Quite well. It just gives me that chance to catch my breath - it never gave me a "high" feeling or knocked me out - sonI guess that's why I never worried about dependency.
Now my sleep meds (Seroquel and Ambien) those I cannot do without, so I guess I am dependant on those. But my psych totally knows where I stand with them, and I am not abusing them - I follow directions very specificlly. It's just that I do not sleep without them. But I've spent a large portion of my life not sleeping, so this is nice being able to for once.
BTW, Sue,ut's nice matching a face to all the posts!
I had panic attacks for many years, also nightmares. These were caused by a former relationship, I had did seek counseling years right after but it was not handled properly. So I tucked it away in a small corner of my mind & went on with life, when life was happily moving along the nightmares started then the panic attacks. I dealt with them the same way by ignoring them as best I could until our children were in school. I was out shopping with our youngest one day and had a very bad attack, and felt that I had left my son & myself vulnerable, and decided to seek help. I saw a psychiatrist, talked it all out & put it behind me also went on mild anti-depressants for less than 2 years (during the sessions) and am now symptom free for aprox. 8years. What a relief!
Rosie, Have you tried any other types of medication? Xanax looses its effectiveness as you build up a tolerance, it is not the best medicine to use for control. It is best used to lessen the severity of the symptoms during an attack. It sounds like the seroquel isn't doing the job. Please ask you doctor to ty something else. There are many meds today that can help and not everyone works for everybody. There is no reason to suffer today or to feel like a zombie.
I vote for medication as the first line of treatment for Panic Attacks. Once the meds are on board then you can do all the exploring you want. I personally believe we are wired wrong an need the medication to regulate the hormones epinephrine and norepinephrine.
I agree that things may cause them to become exacerbated but life is difficult and there is going to always be some sort of stress that could set them off. I personally never want to experience another attack ever!
Can anyone tell me a story about a successful cure without medication?
I suffered from panic attacks for years. I think they started in my early twenties. I can't really remember the catalyst for them. It was different each time but I remember the last really big one I had was on top of a ferris (sp?) wheel back home. We went on with some friends, I wanted to be there, it was a lovely day. It stopped at the top, we were chatting away and all of a sudden it jerked and full blown panic attack. I started hyperventilating (for lack of a better term), my peripheral vision cut out and I remember a voice from somewhere (DH) talking to me to calm me down. It was over by the time the wheel finished it's trip and we got off.
Incidentally, I haven't had one in over four years, since I've been on seizure medication. I don't miss them and I barely remember them.
Rosie, Has the Seroquel worked the best for you? What helps you to get through the attacks you have? Obviously, you are not the person that can rely on medication one.
Honey, I feel your pain. There is no worse feeling than suffering through something the rest of the world does not understand. Even my mother, as much as she loves me, doesn't get it. My husband is the same way. I am 44 years old but when I go though a true attack, I feel I am treated like I am a child. I feel like people are saying, get a grip.
Last edited by Colleen Moore RN; 06/12/0808:25 PM.
Colleen, When i find a medication that "makes me feel better" I stop taking it. I don't like to feel "different" I don't like feeling like i do either. but its the only feeling i know. I know that sounds (stupid) and may be hard to understand. as an abused (sexually) child , I learned to Dissociate, Which is today still a way to escape. I have been at my worse since my 13 yr old son was killed. many of my now, n then, Psychiatrist get so frustrated with me when it comes to my meds. I don't like to feel different even if it means feeling better. I know this doesn't make sense to many. people say Rosie don't you want to feel better. I do but i don't want to feel different ??? don't try to figure it out, i gave up a long time ago
Rosie, Although Zofran does not make me feel "different", I know the feeling you are talking about. It is almost a disconnect from who you are. I would not like that feeling either. I think each case is different, it is important not to have attacks that keep you locked away from the world but if you can't truly enjoy the world because of your medication, what good is it. Kinda a catch twenty-two.
You've been through a lot in your life, you deserve to have the best. Colleen
Yes Michelle I'm thinking of you too, panic is the WORST. BTW there is a full moon coming up next week and this affects pretty much everything, esp emotionality -- no joke. Once that subsides, I bet u will be on the upswing once more. (A friend of mine always says that if the moon can affect the tides, why should we, as walking columns of fluid, be any different?) Very important with panic too is diet. No caffeine (I mean NONE) and never let your blood sugar get low as that can push u over the abyss! Protein is esp helpful (chick peas, cheese). Be kind to yourself. You too Rosie! :>
We've started cleaning out our basement, which means unearthing A LOT of past for me. There are some boxes that I had not even opened since before I was married.
I found a bunch of my old college stuff. I was date-raped in college. And this is just bringing back a lot of memories a little too clearly for me.
Plus I'm in the middle of trying to make a pretty big decision as far as academic/career path. I've had this idea for a business - but it so totally different from what I've always wanted and planned to do (music education)- that it seems a little crazy to change tactics this late.
And, I think I am going to have to take my ex back to coiurt on child support issues.
It's just one thing piled in another, I'm feeling a little buried.
The key is to take things one at a time. I had a panic attack when I tried to talk at a town meeting about something - I am very bad in front of strangers. I felt like I was going to collapse.
Michelle - don't think about life as "I must do X because in the past I planned to do X". People change. Paths change. Something that was perfect for you 5 years ago may be not right for you now. Sit down and decide NOW what would make you very happy. Yes, it might involve a new career - but TONS of people change careers completely. Lots of people hit retirement and do something diametrically different and are so happy!
We should always do what makes us very happy. Pursue your dreams
Michelle, so sorry to hear that and hope you feel better soon. I have them also and they are no fun, recently had a trip to the ER(husband dragged me there I don't like to go)and although I know how much they are NOT fun, alls I could think about all the way to the hospital was that old Cheech and Chong record about Dave, where he knocks on the door and says Dave and the other guy says Dave's not here. I have opted not to take daily drugs, I do try and keep my diet good, exercise, and for me trying to stick to some sort of schedule works most of the time. Maybe try making a list and then work from there. That is one of the things that really helps me because once I do make the list I can see that no I can't realistically do all of things in one day.
I agree with Lisa, do what makes you happy! If you are afraid to venture away from a secure area of your life, figure out a way that you can keep your current income but persue your idea.
Life is tough, you can't let it take control of you. Everyday you are going to face difficult decisions. For the rest of your life, all you can do is make the choices that seem best at the time and don't sweat the small stuff!
Be happy, it isn't worth giving the past that much power. You have gone through some tough stuff but it is in the past.The present is just that,a present and the future can be anything you want it to be! You hold all the cards, listen to what your head and heart tell you and don't give a damn what others think. Don't give some a--h--- the power to make your life anything less than what it should be.
Ok I was reading this and I really don't know what kind of attacks but I get excite acttack I don't know if I am spelling that right but I could feel my heart pounding real fast and I can not breath it is a ugly feeling.
Norma, Nice to meet you! It sounds lik you have some type of anxiety attack going on. My suggestion is to go to your physician and let him know what you are feeling. Sometimes they are fleating because of some type of stress in your life but othr times they will get progressively worse. Which ever the case,your family physician should be able to help you. If not change your doctor! There is no reason why anyone should needlessly suffer from such a debilitating disorder. Colleen
I have had a few and many times was close to one especially the past years (most of those attacks have been in that time period). The first was when I was in physical pain, the others are all related to stress and anxiety.
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