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How Can I Stop My Panic Attacks?

Updated on September 20, 2014

Panic Attacks - What Are Panic Attacks?

Panic Attacks, Panic Disorder, Anxiety and Stress

Do the above words bring panic thoughts to your brain (or stomach)?

You are standing in line at the department store you start to feel your heart beating faster and faster. You then start to feel a bit uncomfortable, but you can't quite place your finger on why. 

Within moments your hands are sweating, your breathing becomes short, rapid and shallow, you feel hot, dizzy and overwhelmed with a sense of fear.

What is this sensation? Where is it coming from?

 If you have experienced similar sensations in the past and especially if you have begun changing your life and routine in the fear of experiencing it again, you may be suffering from Panic Attacks.

What are Panic Attacks? How Can I Stop My Panic Attacks?

Panic Attack Symptoms

Panic is a physical reaction that is a response to stress. Often called the 'fight or flight' response, panic is a normal response to danger and is actually your body's cue to get out of harm's way.

However, when panic sets in when there is no source of danger it can be linked to two causes - stress or possibly, a panic disorder.

The following symptoms are common during a panic attack. You may have just 1 or 2 symptoms or you may have several:

- upset stomach & nausea

- diarrhea

- rapid heartbeat

- shortness of breath or inability to breath

- dizziness

- sweating, shaking or trembling

- a sense of fear

- cold, sometimes clammy skin

- tingling sensation in the fingers or toes

- chest pain

- hot flashes or chills

- thinking you are going to die or go crazy

- a feeling that you are detached from your surroundings

If you have ever had a panic attack then you can fully understand how terrible they really are.

Sure the above symptoms sound bad, but when they are happening to your body, they are so much worse then they sound.

As someone who has had many, many attacks ( more than I care to remember) I understand how you feel when you are having one.

What Causes Panic Attacks?

Some doctors still disagree as to what brings on the first panic attack but it is usually related to stress. Whether your stress is considered "good" stress like planning a Hawaiian vacation, getting ready for the Holidays or "bad" stress like losing a job or getting divorced, your body just sees stress as stress and can not differentiate between the two.

Stress in our lives is not usually caused by a physical danger; in fact most stress is caused by completely normal daily activities and is not harmful to us.

Too much stress, however, is dangerous to our body and in some cases it can cause panic attacks, particularly if we have experienced an additional trauma or burden such as the loss of a loved one or big change such as a new job, moving into a new home or getting married.

While normal stress can cause anxiety, when panic attacks become regular a panic disorder may be the cause.

Panic disorder may or may not be directly related to over stress. Some researchers are linking the panic attacks caused by panic disorder to a physical cause. If this is the case you need to seek professional help in dealing with the symptoms.

Sadly most individuals suffering from panic disorder do not get properly diagnosed. Many begin to suffer the physical and psychological effects of changing their lives, their jobs and their recreational activities to accommodate their panic attacks before finding a physician that can properly diagnose their condition.

If the first panic attack occurred in a particular store, they will start avoiding that store. Little by little they start avoiding certain places that once gave them pleasure.

The symptoms of panic attacks may also lead a person to believe they have a dangerous physical condition and seek treatment for various unrelated diseases and conditions.

Can a Panic Disorder Be Treated?

Can you stop panic attacks?

If you think you have been experiencing panic attacks you will need to be diagnosed by your physician and possibly referred to a psychiatrist or psychologist (no, it's not due to them thinking you are crazy but psychiatrists are more tuned in to the medications that may bring relief).

While the physical symptoms may not be connected to a mental condition, often the fear of having panic attacks in public leads to phobias that may need to be treated as well.

A combination of medication and therapy may be used to combat the panic attacks and help a person to overcome related phobias.

The good news is that panic disorder responds very well to treatment and those who receive treatment can lead healthy, normal lives.

How do I know? I for many years suffered, yes, suffered- if you have ever had an attack you'll understand- it is the absolute worst feeling in the world.

Panic Attacks - My Personal Story

For years I hid the fact that I was having panic attacks because I was afraid that people that I knew would think that I was either going crazy or trying to get attention.

I had gone from doctor to doctor and I was constantly being told that it was just a woman thing and that it will go away, and they do often go away but then they will often return again.

But all changed when I moved to Hawaii in 1983.

Now you would think that living in such a nice peaceful place such as Hawaii would eliminate all stress, however I started again to get panic attacks but this time they would only happen in my sleep.

Yep, they would wake me up out of a sound sleep and I would sweat, shake and puke my guts out for what appeared to be hours with each attack. I'd actually wake up with a bruised stomach from the violent muscle reaction.

I then found a doctor who was not only aware of panic attacks but had just got back from the mainland from a panic attack seminar.

Although both the doctor and I both knew that I was having panic attacks, he gave me a barrage of tests to rule out an underlying conditions. He also sent me to a psychologist, again to rule out any other conditions that I might have had.

To hold me until my test results came back (I was having my panic attacks almost every night) he gave me a few books to read about panic attacks, medication and best of all he understood and let me know that panic attacks are a physical condition and like someone who may wear glasses or have had a gallbladder removed, it is just a weakness that my body has.

Luckily all my results came back normal even though deep inside I wanted a physical ailment that could easily be fixed to be found. Although the medication that I was given should have taken 4-6 weeks to start working it started to work within a few days.

Weird thing is that the medication (Imiprame) is mainly used for children and bed wetting, yet it also helped to stop my attacks.

The medication did have several side effects like a craving for sweets, weight gain, a bit of dizziness when I stood up from a crouched position and dry mouth but to me they were all worth it, just to have the attacks stop.

No, they didn't stop right away but they did begin to get less severe and came less often.

Just being able to admit to myself that my body wasn't perfect, but neither is anyone else and that I shouldn't be ashamed of having panic attacks greatly reduced the attacks themselves.

Reading, learning and understanding how to cope with a panic attack is your best defense. Read all you can about stopping a panic attack once it starts will help you begin to over come them.

I am happy to say that I have not had a panic attack in quite a while and I am no longer on any type of medication for it.


Panic Attack Tip - It Can Really Help!

So you're starting to feel uncomfortable and you know a panic attack is on it's way and your not sure what to do. The experts say to relax and it will go away but usually that does not work.

Try this instead:

Start counting from 100 backwards by 9's. Then by 8, then 7, by 6 etc. When you are struggling to do the calculations your brain will be focused on the math and not on how your body is feeling.

If you find that counting backwards from 100 is easy for you, try something harder like starting from 300.

Although this appears to be very simple, the idea behind it is to keep your mind engaged so that it can't focus on your panic.

Seriously - try it. If counting backwards is very easy for you try other math tests like division. If you have to think hard to get the answers you will often find that you've made it though an attack.

L-Theanine the Amino Acid For Soothing Nerves

L-Theanine is a cortisol balancing amino acid and is derived from green tea.

L-Theanine starts to work in about 30 minutes and unlike prescription medications, L-Theanine does not make you tired, sleepy or have that dopey feeling. I have found that for me, if I take 400 mgs I feel calm and relaxed for about 7- 9 hours. While L-Theanine does not make you tired so it really doesn't help with sleeping some people find that if their mind is racing at night L-Theanine may help calm it

While L-Theanine is a supplement that is purchased over the counter you should always read the label and use as directed and you should always discuss it's use with your doctor as you may be on a medication or have a medical condition that would prohibit its use and never use any over the counter supplements if you are pregnant or nursing.

Panic Attack High Cholesterol Connection

Researchers have found a connection between having high cholesterol and having panic attacks.

Not everyone who has high cholesterol will have panic attacks but it has been noticed that a good percentage of those who do get panic attacks have high cholesterol.

In addition, researchers have found that a big meal, heavy in fat may also set off a panic attack. We all know that high fat meals are not good for us and now there is another reason to watch your fat intake.

Relaxation Techniques - Relaxtion tips to help stop panic attacks

stop panic attacks, relaxation techniques, anxiety relief
stop panic attacks, relaxation techniques, anxiety relief

1) Deep Breathing With Your Diaphragm:

When we feel nervous or anxious we often start to hyperventilate - that is breathing very quickly and very shallow and can make you very dizzy due to too much oxygen getting in to your system. And yes, if you find that you are hyperventilating and can not slow down your breathing try breathing into a paper bag. When you breathe this way you will also be breathing in your own carbon dioxide which will help with the dizziness.

This why one of the best relaxation techniques for anxiety or the onset of a panic attack is to breathe using the full capacity of your lungs - as full as you feel comfortable.

To do this deep breathing you should imagine that you're breathing down into your stomach instead of your chest. Your stomach should rise and fall each time you breathe in and out. With shallower breathing it is your chest that normally expands when you breathe

Slow and very controlled breathing can help you refocus your mind and you will find yourself beginning to relax. You may not notice it immediately but you will very shortly.

2) Visualization:

Visualization is a very popular and effective way of taking your mind away from whatever it is that's making you feel anxious.

Picture in your mind in very vivid detail the sights, sounds, smells and emotions that you would feel if you were in a that location or situation that made you feel relaxed and comfortable.

This may take a few times to really be able to get yourself involved with your "safe place" and the more that you practice the better you will become.

When are you the most relaxed or when or where in your life were you the happiest? Try to focus on that particular time and place.

Go into as much detail as possible. If you are visualizing being on a beach - feel the heat from the sun, smell the ocean air, do you feel a slight gentle breeze or is the wind more brisk? If you are thinking about sitting down under a palm tree, try to feel the sun peak in and out of the branches, listen to the rustling of the bird in the tree. Are the birds singing or only flapping their wings?

This is your story, so choose one that relates to you. Some people prefer a more active situation so they may visualize snow boarding, skiing or even sky diving ( although sky diving would freak me out it just may be perfect for you)

3) Hypnosis:

There many hypnosis relaxation audios available as MP3's or CD's. These types of audios will help to steer your mind away from your anxious thoughts and can help take you through certain methods to help your body relax. I personally like such as progressive muscle relaxation where you relax each muscle of your body one by one.

Just focusing on your muscles instead of your problems starts to relieve your tension.

You can find many of these for free or low cost on the internet or as an app for your smartphone.

Look for a hypnoses guide or audio that has good reviews from previous users and remember too, that hypnosis can only work if you believe that it can work. If you are not a believer then use one of the other methods.

If you prefer to see a hypnotist to help relieve your stress, ask your doctor for a few names and see which type of hypnosis techniques they use. Also if money is an issue check with your health insurance to see if they cover hypnosis for stress reduction or panic attacks as some do and some don't

4) Timed Breathing:

If you're stressed and try to breathe deeply you may find it difficult and actually start to hyperventilate or find that you can't relax enough to breathe deeply. Instead of trying to breathe deeply, try timing your breathing instead. For example, try breathing in for a count of 4, and out for a count of 6. Extending your out-breath is shown to help relax your body's nervous system, and the counting gives you something else to focus your mind on. The examples are just that -examples. Your times may be different but normally your breathing in should be about 4-6 seconds and your breathing out would be 5 -8 seconds. If you have respiratory issues your times may vary greatly from those shown and if you are not sure if this technique is right for you be sure to check with your doctor or specialist before attempting it.

5) Improve Your Sleep:

Although it's not a relaxation technique that you would putt in the same category as those above, a good sound and restful sleep is import.ant. When your mind and body does not get enough deep sleep you may start to feel anxious or tense. Ans then many times when we are tense, we can't get a good night's sleep.

So how can we get a better and more sound sleep?

* Always avoid tons of caffeine during the day and stop having any caffeine at all at mid-afternoon

* Try not to drink too many liquids within 3 hours of going to bed - otherwise you might have to wake up to use the bathroom and then your mind will start racing again.

* Try to add a bit more exercise into your day. Exercise can help you relax and also burn off nervous energy.

* Even if you normally shower in the morning, try taking one about 30 minutes before bed. A warm shower will relax your muscles and the warmth will soothe your mind. You just don't want to wash your hair at this time as you will find it hard going to sleep with a wet head.

* If you snack at night have some yogurt or tuna. Both are said to relax.

6) Grab a glass of water:

Yes, something as simple as getting and slowly drinking a glass of water can start to relax.

Have you noticed that in many "police or emergency" type shows they ask a person who may have been attacked or had a loved one rushed to the hospital if they want a glass of water? The water is used as a diversion. While the person is picking up the glass and drinking they are concentrating on drinking and not their stressful situation. It's simple - but it can help.

quick panic attack relief, stop your panic attacks quickly, stop your anxiety attacks
quick panic attack relief, stop your panic attacks quickly, stop your anxiety attacks

Become A Panic Attack Success Story

Overcoming your anxiety attacks

Stop letting panic attacks keep you away from what you love doing - don't let them rule your life.

Stop the avoidance of certain places due to the fear of another attack - the more you avoid the stronger the connection.

Stop being afraid to travel -whether it be by car, bus, airplane.

Stop being afraid to leave your house for fear of another attack.

Stop feeling uncomfortable in your own skin - if you get panic & anxiety attacks you know how this feels.

Stop from having to always look for an escape route or a bathroom, just in case.

Become a panic attack success story - you really can!

panic attacks, stop panic attacks, overcome panic attacks
panic attacks, stop panic attacks, overcome panic attacks

If you believe that you have any health condition including panic attacks, it's important that you seek medical care for the proper diagnosis and treatment.

You may not realize it now --but you can get your panic attacks under control.

Yes, it may take a while & yes, you may have to try several different methods but there is help available.

Have you ever had a panic attack?

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    • nebby profile image
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      nebby 3 years ago from USA

      When I moved from Hawaii to the Rocky Mountains someone had told me that both the cold and the dry air would help. I am not sure if it did or not but my panic attacks had stopped a year or two after living here.

      You would think that living in relaxing Hawaii would have stopped them but they only got worse while we were there.

      I've never seen any type of study that looked at temperatures or humidity so I don't know what the relationship is, or if there even is one but if you feel better in the cooler temps then maybe for you it does help.

      Everyone is so different and there is no one way for everyone. Keep trying different things and be sure to check with a professional as they can really make a difference in how you look at panic attacks and how they affect you.

      Good luck!

    • profile image

      anonymous 3 years ago

      I have been having panic attacks since before I can remember and thought that I was getting used to them, but lately they have been getting worse and more frequent. The thing that seems to help the most is cold (65 F or lower), is this just mental or could it be physical?

    • nebby profile image
      Author

      nebby 4 years ago from USA

      @april-dunsmuir: Thank you for sharing your story with us.

      I agree 100% about how important a support network is. Even if it is just one person whom you can openly talk to can make a big difference in how you feel about yourself and how much more quickly you can begin to take control of your panic attacks.

      While I could never talk to anyone while I was having an attack ( I felt too sick to communicate in any way) a few hours after it was over I would let it out and talk it over with a friend.

      As silly as it may sound to those who have never had an episode I have a very good friend who started off by telling her dog what was going on. By letting it out to him and feeling comfortable she then was able to tell me and others.

      Sometimes it's just that first step that can break the chain.

      Again- thank you

    • profile image

      april-dunsmuir 4 years ago

      I started having panic attacks about 8 years ago and it basically took over my life. I would have racing heart, shortness of breath, fear of dying, shaking, sweats, feeling like I'm going to pass out, my head felt heavy, my eyes felt twitchy, a big fear of something but couldn't put my finger on it. I would have them in my car, in stores, I couldn't go out with my friends because I was afraid that I would have one and feel stupid if they saw me acting funny. I had them so bad that I would keep my kids home from school to stay at home with me just in case I died. My husband didn't believe me and thought it was all in my head and I was looking for attention, he even went as far as throwing my meds down the toilet because he said that there wasn't anything wrong and the doctors are only making money off of me and people like me because they don't know either. UNTIL a few years later he had one and then he believed me. I was put on all kinds of medications and none of them worked they only caged them up for a little until you stop taking them and then they come back again. I have learned to control them a little without meds and that's because I have had them for so long but trust me I have my moments where home is the only safe place and sometimes it doesn't always feel safe here. The only solution I have found is talking with someone and try to keep your mind off of it. I have tried being alone while having one of these and for me it's worse because I don't feel safe and in fear that I will die and no one will find me. But I try to handle it on my own and I know for a fact that you can't die from having one of these it just feels like it and the feelings take over your whole body even when you know your not going to die. That's where I find myself being weaker than my own mind. I think you just have to learn to live with it and have good support from your family and friends during these times and be in a support group with people who understand you so that way you all can laugh about it and tell your scary stories and they will understand. Meds are just temp relief they only cage them up for a short while and when you get off they will come back again sometime down the road. Just know that your not going to die from them no need to rack up a huge hospital and doctor bill. It is scary but having someone to talk to during this attack will help A WHOLE LOT, trust me. Have a friend on speed dial or your kids or husband and wife, whomever and let them know that you may need them sometime when you have one and explain to them what your problem is before hand so they are prepared. If I could I would hand my number out to you guys to call me we can be afraid together and act silly but I'm not open 24 hours lol

    • nebby profile image
      Author

      nebby 4 years ago from USA

      @anonymous: While most people believe that going to the doctor means having to go on prescription meds - that's not necessarily true. The first step when you go to the doctor is to rule out any other health issues as there are many that mimic panic attacks.

      Once you rule out any other type of issue you can then begin to zero in on why and exactly where your attacks are showing up. Then you can find natural herbal supplements that can help.

      Many find that L-Theanine is a great help while many other people find that Holy Basil Leaf Extract, Passion Flower Extract, GABA, Magnesium or Chamomile work for them.

      All herbal supplements should be treated just like a prescription med and side effects should be thoroughly examined before using and a trusted doctor or naturalist can help you decide on which would and even more importantly which supplements would not be right for you.

      Don't forget about relaxation techniques - so many people overlook this but it is so important. Panic attacks occur when your nervous system kicks into overdrive and regular relaxation can help to even out your nervous system and make it work more efficiently and correctly.

      Then read, read, read and read more about panic attacks - the more you know the better you will be able to handle each attack and the more attacks you get under control the quicker they start to go away and the less often you will have them.

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      I have bad panic attacks have done for years it has spoiled my life when i have an attack i get very sweaty and dizzy the left gland in my neck seems to swell and i start to gag so whether it be in a busy shop or my car that's what happens and i normally have to leave fast lt also stops me going to places maybe for dinner somewhere or to places where their are lots of pleople i have been with my partner for 16 years but cannot go on holiday with her because of the attacks their must be lots of people i know who think im a bit strange but it all leads down to the attacks it limits me so much in what i can do going to the doctor is not an option as will not take drugs any ideas to rid me of this terrable condition ??? I just want to live a normal life again

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      I don't suffer from panic attacks but i am aware of it, i think this is a great resource to help people in those conditions, i like to be informed and surely will come back to see more of this lens, thank you for sharing, and good luck and way to go to everybody who could learn, benefit or conquer their panic attacks from this lens. homeopathy/naturopathy is also a great way to conquer panic attacks and i also believe that breathing techniques also work:) thanks once again for sharing this info.

    • profile image

      toshtao 5 years ago

      Driving in general makes me nervous. Having panic attacks while driving is like icing on a rotten cake. I have been researching many cures online for my anxiety. According to my research, the Amygdala neurons in your brain control your anxiety. You need to reset these neurons back to normal. You will be happy again and may even get rid of your panic attacks permanently if you figure this out.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      @anonymous: i have the same panic attacks only when i am driving :{ .. what to do ...

    • nebby profile image
      Author

      nebby 5 years ago from USA

      @anonymous: Louise - yes you should see your Doctor & you should see them ASAP. It's been proven that the sooner you go for help, the easier it is to get over your attacks. Once you let them settle in and take control of your life the harder it is to break the habit.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      i recently started to suffer with attacks the last one was the worst i felt like i was going to die and couldn move from where i was.i lost a friend of mine three weeks ago and that's when they started.should i visit my doctor as i am a single parent and can't put up with it anymore

    • profile image

      dream1983 5 years ago

      I enjoy reading your lens, great job!

    • nebby profile image
      Author

      nebby 5 years ago from USA

      @rachel-isaac-7777: Rachel, I feel for you. Someone who may be reading your story may not truly understand how debilitating panic attacks can be and how they basically rule every moment of your life.

      I would love to know what your eating habits are. Since you often don't feel well do you often grab the easiest food to prepare, which can often be processed food. Or do you try to eat fresh, healthier food?

      About the time where my husband and I both lost our jobs, we had to make a decision - pay our bills and opt for very cheap food or eat well and not pay our bills. We opted for eating the cheapest food that we could. Unfortunately it consisted of French bread and Ramen type noodles for most of our meals. Having all of this processed food started to bring back my panic attacks in addition to giving me insomnia. Once I started to get back on to more fruits and veggies the attacks started going away. If you are not eating simple, healthy foods try to add them into your diet. If you are short on money you can opt for frozen vegetables and only purchase fruit that is in season. A change in your diet may bring upon a big change in how you feel.

      Second thing you may want to check out is Holy Basil. I friend of mine just started having anxiety attacks and her homeopath suggested holy basil to be taken a few times a day and she started to see small results within a week. And it started to help more and more. I just started reading about Holy Basil and it does look like something that could be a help for many people. I don't see any negative side effects written anywhere but you may want to check with your doctor. You can find holy basil at mot health food stores and also online at many shops including Amazon.

      Have you tried tart cherry juice or melatonin to help you sleep? Both can work wonders - again check with your Dr. - Passion flower is also a good choice to help ease anxiety and help sleep, but it can interfere with certain medications so you should always check first before taking.

      Anxiety has a spiraling effect and where it starts as one ailment it can sprout into many but once you start to see a bit of relief in one area you will find that symptoms in all appear to gradually decrease, this then also has a snowball effect, but this time it's a good thing.

      Take a good look at your diet and your exercise level. Try to get back to natural as much as possible and don't give up. Relief is there, you just have to find the right combination for YOU!

      Good luck!

    • profile image

      rachel-isaac-7777 5 years ago

      I have suffered from anxiety since I was a young child but especially since the age of 18 & I am 36 now so severe there a daily thing sometimes multiple times a day they have became so bad I developed agoraphobia just in case people don't know what that is it means I don't even leave my house anymore other than to go to doc or occasionally grocery shopping but usually my mother and 18 year old son do that for me! I haven't worked sinced 2006 when I got very sick which is what I believe kickstarted my anxiety being this bad! I have had every test under the sun ran on me from head to toe, I suffer from severe migrains,cluster and tension headaches which trigger panic attacks because I think the worst even though my brain has been fully checked out! I have also had my heart lungs and other organs checked out and they're all good, I just had a lot of health problems growing up and had over 15 surgeries if you don't need that organ I don't have it, because I had problems with all mine that weren't vital and had to have them removed, no wonder I have anxiety or sound crazy right? I have been through more than nore 70-80 year olds and that's just health wise I also have ptsd from being sexually assaulted by a close friend after knowing him for over 8 years. So yea life hasn't been the easiet not to mention I became pregnant at 17 & a single mother at 18 and raised my son all on my own all 18 years of his life but I look at my life as my.story with many lessons and I'm a survivor and an AMAZING mother and just want to enjoy the years the anxiety has stolen from me! I have tried everything med wise! Right now im on busporine 7.5mg in am clonazepam 0.5mg 3 times a day and then viibryd 20mg in pm and I get some relief but still have anxiety everyday somedaus are worse than others. Oh and I have insomnia horribly and newly diagnosed sleep apnea that I wear a cpap machine for at night any ideas please help

    • profile image

      rcarlton83 5 years ago

      I have experienced this awful ordeal many times. At times you can feel is if you're having a heart attack. It's a good thing that people are now beginning to realize just how serious this disorder is. Thanks for the good info.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      I have had social anxiety for about 4 rears now, and i'm now 23. I used to be a really sociable person, and loved to hang out with friends and family. My anxiety got so bad, that i could not handle being around family and friends. I would just feel really panicky and really uneasy. But i'v been going to CBT (Cognitive behavioral therapy), and its really helped me. Thanks for the info, it was very interesting. =)

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      @anonymous: Michelle, I feel your pain I just started having panick attacks out of the blue. And I would give anything to go back to being ME ! I will pray for you as well. I just started on celexa and i take Xanax for the moment. I hope and pray for the day that I will not have to depend on any medication.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Mime for some reason is when I'm driving and I.don't know why I have only had them about year now I used to love to drive and travel now I dread driving to work everyday I'm on 2 prescriptions and they are helping much either

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      There is an AWESOME book called "When Panic Attacks" by Dr. David Burns. It is amazing! I am only halfway through and I feel better already. I was so tired of trying all these different medications that don't help that much anyway!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      I recently cut out majority of wheat products, sugar, processed foods and alcohol from my diet after suffering several years from panic and anxiety disorder. I added a lot more of fats, protein and vegetables but took out most of high carb foods (rice, bread, pasta, white potatoes. etc). In the last four months, my panic/anxiety completely disappeared. If you developed panic attack out of nowhere like me (no major mental stress factors), I'd really recommend overhauling your diet. I read a lot about panic attacks and stress but seldom about it's relationship with what we eat. Look into it, far better alternative to psych-drugs.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      yes i am 59 years old this year been having them since i was 13 years old i get very very frightened

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      lots of interesting info.thanks for sharing

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      @anonymous: i know your feeling or reason why u didn`t tell them about your attacks dud, but for me it is better to open it up to others so that they will be aware of your situation and they might help you on that, i am experiencing also a panic attacks since i think 3 weeks ago ^_^. i already run some medical or laboratory tests these past few weeks but its seems all to be okay and it decreases my worries that i might think to find some severe physical errors (you already know what i mean ^_^) but what i just said im all okay in my physical health. By the way im just sixteen years old just yesterday iv`e been to a psychologist and give me some medication treatment but when i look the side effects of it on the internet i refuse to take the medicine i better to use a treatment that don`t apply some medication process. My panic attacks are in at night but i can overcome them in minutes just drinking a hot chocolate drink or milk watching happy movies or funny jokes in the internet or etc. i also do some reading a reading materials that gives motivation not those reading materials having too much emotions like drama or horror it just gave me a panic attacks hehehe. I always instill to my mind that i can overcome this situation and its just a challenge to yourself on i think, how you are enclose to your self not on how you are enclose to your problems that make stress etc. One reason for this attacks is too much addiction to computer i always play online games and sleep too late in evening, and thinking about my girlfriend also gives me stress ^_^ so i decided to think about strategies to help myself about this. I also know the feeling when panic attack is there it feels hopeless our heart is pounding and start thinking of negative situation or more. I also want to share that when i started to talk to my friends going to malls with them or anything just to forget all problems i can now start to forget that i have a panic attack i just enjoy every happy moments with them ^_^ and it feels so happy hehehe. caffeine can also trigger the panic attack to be there that`s what my doctor said yesterday or too much sugars can also be the reason of panic attacks. ^_^ And while i am typing this right now i overcome my panic attack because i know i am not the one who is suffering from this blessing disorder hehehe. Its just an examination for me of how you really familiar to you self and that is your task and i feel very very happy when panic attack is there and i can overcome it in just minutes it feels like victory over a thousand foe`s i keep these as a happy challenge i just deal it in happy ways not in a serious ways co`z its not anyway a serious physical illness heheh. I am also listening to some particular music that help me to overcome this panic attack, the music is called ``Sleep Away by. Bob Acri`` and i am listening to it right now hehe. i have a positive side that i can do these i can defeat panic attacks. this is my self territory i am the only one who can push away any emotional distress i know my self better than others.

      that`s all for now and to all of those people who are currently suffering from panic attacks of course WE can overcome them but don`t be so aggressive take them out slowly but surely heheh. ^_^ God bless to all of us.

      p.s sorry for my wrong grammars if there or language errors hehe im from asia, i still can't say English words perfectly. ^_^ hope you understand ^_^

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      i suffer with panic disorder and it sometimes helps if u look in a mirror and say your name and that u feel ok 10 times don't always work but its worth a try

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      BananaBonana 5 years ago

      @anonymous: I know exactly what you are going through. I was recently put on Prozac by my doctor for the panic attacks. It was strange to me at first when my doctor told me that the symptoms I had described to him were signs of panic attacks. Even after my doctor told me this it took a while for me to come to terms with the fact that I really wasn't going crazy. I have realized that all those times growing up when I felt this huge wave of anger, sadness, frustration, and rage (just from silly, petty arguments with my family) I was actually suffering from panic attacks. However, when I would have them as a child I remember my older sister and my mom thinking I was crazy. I remember being 10 yrs old and my sister was crying upset because she didn't know why I was having these spells of rage. I grew up thinking I was crazy...and about a year ago I started cutting myself every time I had a panic attack I guess because I felt I needed punishment for how I was acting. Basically, what helps me is knowing that I am not crazy and it is hard for others to understand why we have these emotions but it stills doesn't mean we are nuts. Now anytime I have a panic attack, if I am at home I will normally just go online and look up random subjects on google. Getting your mind off of the triggers really does help. Reading forums like these and getting it all off your chest helps a lot too :)

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      @anonymous: those medication did not work for me, i have panic attacs the first in my life was a week ago .. i went to ER 3 times then the last time the doctor told that they can no keep me at the hospital my problem has panic attacs . the next day i went to my primary doc he prescribed me valummin and paroxetime that make me worst you can no sleep even if you are taking valium ,, so i went to a psychiatrist and he prescripted me clonazepan and citalopram so now i been taking 2 days in roll at bedtime and IT WORKs ,, i can sleep better and it calm u down

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      @anonymous: those medication did not work for me, i have panic attacs the first in my life was a week ago .. i went to ER 3 times then the last time the doctor told that they can no keep me at the hospital my problem has panic attacs . the next day i went to my primary doc he prescribed me valummin and paroxetime that make me worst you can no sleep even if you are taking valium ,, so i went to a psychiatrist and he prescripted me clonazepan and citalopram so now i been taking 2 days in roll at bedtime and IT WORKs ,, i can sleep better and it calm u down

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      @anonymous: those medication did not work for me, i have panic attacs the first in my life was a week ago .. i went to ER 3 times then the last time the doctor told that they can no keep me at the hospital my problem has panic attacs . the next day i went to my primary doc he prescribed me valummin and paroxetime that make me worst you can no sleep even if you are taking valium ,, so i went to a psychiatrist and he prescripted me clonazepan and citalopram so now i been taking 2 days in roll at bed time and IT WORKs ,, i can sleep better and it calm u down

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      Yes, breathing in and out and thinking about a happy place honestly is how I got over it, I had to tell myself I would be okay.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      i have panic disorder since im 17. im 19 now. 3 yrs im suffering a panic disorder.. but it is present only before i sleep. help me. im a Christian :D

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      i have panic disorder since im 17. im 19 now. 3 yrs im suffering a panic disorder.. but it is present only before i sleep. help me. im a Christian :D

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      @anonymous: I have been having panic attacks for about 2 1/2 months. I have read many things and have taken many tests. Heart stress test, echocardiogram, endoscopy etc. I have done quite a bit of research. I know of 3 things a middle aged man needs to consider being tested for. Thyroid condition. "male" menopause and anemia. I am anemic, but only a little bit. Anemia can have adverse effects at any level. My most recent check is of my hormone level and thyroid. i am awaiting results....

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      @anonymous: I am in the same boat. I quit drinking and the panic attacks are constant and severe for 8 months. I cannot get off Xanax. Only thing that works is alcohol plus 4mg Xanax + 2mg Klonopin to give a super downer that has worked for 17 years. I suffered constant panic attack for 25 years. It is a malfunction of the GABA receptors sites in the brain. I am normal when I take that high of a dose (most people would be knocked out), I never become immune to that combination. It is biological precondition like diabetes 2, you can prevent it from getting worst if you nip in the bud first before it gets out of hand. I think I will be on this combo of drug and medicine for life. I have tired and it does help, the cogitative visualization techniques. I am a very intelligent person, it happen to anyone. I hope in the future they can develop better medication for this condition. We, you, are not crazy, no more than a person who take insulin to stay alive. It can be controlled. I have never meet anyone who has it as bad as me, but then again it is ALL bad for anyone to experience this living hell.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      @anonymous: Wow, you explained my situation exactly! My psychiatrist prescribed me Valium and Paroxetine, I've been diagnosed with Panic Disorder and I am now getting attacks everyday, sometimes lasting for hours.. I have never felt so bad in my whole life and I am 39 yrs old.. I'm praying, hoping, trying to educate myself etc but it's slow going... So desperate to get better!

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      I have had this for almost a month. I am 29 and very healthy. There are some times I have 3 a day and for the last 3 nights I thought I had to go to er they get so bad, body gets really hot can't sleep then u go into full attacks. My dr has put me on 2 different pills one works if I feel the attack coming and the other is to calm down long term.some days I wish so bad to go back to a normal life! These have effected every thing I do. Everybody says give it time and it will get better. I pray every day for that!

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      kathysart 5 years ago

      Yes.. so this is a great lens to review! Nice job with lots of interesting info. Blessed!

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      JoshK47 5 years ago

      I've had some minor ones in the past... very, very scary stuff. A very well put together lens for helping those with frequent ones - great work.

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      samoasuel 5 years ago

      @anonymous: Yes you may have depression and should consult with a doctor or psychologist for assesment and treatment. Panic is one of the most successfully treated mental disorder. Good luck and breath deep and slow. Samoasuel

    • nebby profile image
      Author

      nebby 5 years ago from USA

      @anonymous: Many people who suffer with panic attacks also suffer from depression and a small percentage of people who suffer from depression also get panic attacks. For many people the combination of the two is almost unbearable, BUT there is help available for both depression and panic attacks.

      Sometimes it's as simple as talking it out with a counselor to start feeling better and then adding on different treatments as time, health and finances allow.

      You should know however, that even those who are financially strapped can still get the help they need for low or no cost.

      The desperate feelings that you have during your panic attacks are quite common and is a sign that you should seek professional help as soon as possible.

      Most major cities have phone crises counseling free of charge and even if there is not one in your city you can still call in to a crises line in another city. They can help walk you through a panic attack and are also good at recommending options.

      If you are able to, try and find the time to talk to your dad and step mom about your panic attacks and you may find that they understand more than you think that they would. They also may be able to set up a doctor's appointment for you. Be sure to do it when you are not having an attack so that you are more apt to reason better.

      If you feel that you can't talk it over with them, seek out a doctor or other professional to help.

      Usually the quicker you start getting treatment, the better the chance that the more simpler treatment works. However when people put off getting help their attacks come more frequently and may take longer to get rid of.

      The good news is that you are taking the first step by admitting that you get attacks. This alone can often help to reduce the power of the attacks.

      Now you just need to continue to seek help for both your anxiety and possible

      depression.

      It is possible to be panic attack free but it will take some work. The sooner you start working on it, the shorter the road will be.

      Good luck!

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      I've had panic attacks before but they are getting worse now. I had a really really bad one last night and my dad and step mom don't know about my attacks and they were yelling at me and I felt like I was going to pass out and now every time I see my step mom I start to shake and hyperventilate but during my attacks I feel like I want to kill myself... Depression runs in my family but I don't know if I have it... could I have depression associated with my panic attacks?

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      had this feeling for months now from dizziness to palpitations, all the medical tests were negative from ecg to chest xrays and others tests...guest it's a panick attack, its my third day to stop smoking hoping it will reduce what im feeling...

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      KarenCookieJar 5 years ago

      I used to just avoid situations that would bring on panic attacks, but now I've had to start taking something to calm me, because they have gotten much worse this year, and the worst part is, I don't know why or what to do to stop them. I hate feeling like I can't control my mind or body. Thank you for your information, I will try some of your advice.

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      anxiety247 5 years ago

      A bunch of times I got huge panic attacks in the grocery store. Once it was so bad that I left a cart FULL of groceries in the store and ran out because I was sure I was dying. It was the worst.

      I eventually found some natural remedies for anxiety that helped me go to the store without freaking out but it took me a few times to not freak out.

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      I been having panic attacks for about a month now, it was very scary i thought i was bout to die, i was shaking, nervous & i feared a lot, my heart would start racing & my mom though i was crazy & wanted some attention but, i didn't i went to the hospital about 3 times the third time they gave me some Vilums & they worked pretty good, but still it comes & goes, it wakes me in my sleep, so i stay up late at night so, i really tink i need help, but hopefully that will be the cure.

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      geekdrummer 6 years ago

      Panic attacks are so scary..my daughter has them and she feels like she is having a heart attack. Thanks for the great lens.

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      mavens 6 years ago

      Panic attacks are not dangerous, but they can be terrifying, largely because it feels 'crazy' and 'out of control.'

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      Echo Phoenix 6 years ago

      I went through a period of time when the threat of a panic attack coming on was so unbearable that I would avoid leaving the house and all forms of social contact. It was awful! I did find that naural remedies worked much better for me than prescribed medicines... yoga was super good for balancing myself out and regaining inner peace. Also, changing my diet to a healthier one... I adopted a rainbow diet to balance my chakras. best wishes to all who are suffering with this condition; take it easy on yourself;)

    • nebby profile image
      Author

      nebby 6 years ago from USA

      @anonymous: Charlotte,

      There is a good chance that the stress from going to college in the fall is making you feel really stressed out now even though you may not even realize it. Many people feel the additional stress worrying about what may happen in the future and that causes stress now.

      Try to remind yourself that hundreds of thousands of students attend college every year and once they start to attend they find that it is not nearly as stressful as they had imagined. While your awake brain may feel relaxed about going to college, your brain while you are asleep may be worrying and while there is not a lot you can do to ease this there are a few things you can try.

      First if you live near the college that you are going to attend see if you can get to know the campus so that you can picture it in your mind. While it may seem silly, try to picture yourself smiling and having a good time. While you sleep your brain will look towards college as being less stressful and will help you relax during the day.

      Try to eat less junk or processed foods. While we often grab junk foods while we are stressed, they can often rebound and make you feel worse. Try to avoid the 5 "whites" as much as you can. They are white bread, white rice, salt, sugar and white potatoes as cause your blood sugar to spike and drop which can give you the shakes and make you dizzy.

      Speaking of feeling dizzy. Have you told your doctor about this? If not you should. You could be raising your blood pressure due to stress and should get your blood pressure taken.

      The disconnect that you feel to the world is normal when you are anxious and I have felt it many, many times. Just keep reminding yourself that there is a good chance that 7-10% of the people that you see around you are also feeling the same way. Yes, panic and anxiety attacks are more common than people want to admit. The first step of feeling better is letting it out and telling your story - just as you have here. While is may seem like a small things, stating that you do get panic attacks can actually relieve some of the panic.

      While I am not a doctor and can not suggest any type of herbs or supplements for you to try there are many in the marketplace that can work wonders in addition to drinking relaxing teas. Although I really don't like the taste of any kind of tea, when I am stressed I'll have a cup of camomile tea and will start to feel relaxed.

      Try to be sure that you are eating enough protein, as protein can help to soothe nerve endings. This will also help you relax. Sometimes this is when a burger can be helpful.

      Remember although it may be hard to talk with parents sometimes it's best to let them know how you feel and they can help you search for more ways to help you relax and feel better about yourself. Many times letting it out, having a real good cry can help to get out these pent up emotions. If you feel the urge to cry, don't hold it back. If you are around others and feel ashamed excuse yourself for a few minutes, let it out then go back to what you were doing. If you are alone ( if I need a good cry I do it in the shower and the red eyes just look like you've gotten soap in them) let it out. Crying can be good for you.

      And remember above all - your panic attacks can be kept under control with a bit of practice and more people than you think get panic attacks - it's very common. You might be surprised how many celebrities have attacks the day or two before going to an even or on stage. They use their excess energy to their advantage to give a better performance. Feeling stressed is additional energy and sometimes you can exercise it away by going for a brisk walk.

      Good luck :)

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      Hi there im a nineteen year old girl and i have recently started having panick attacks they really worry me and are horrible :( My GP says i have anxiety and has put me on amitriptyline tablets to calm me down. I haven't started them yet but i have been suffering from dizziness really badly all week and the feeling wont go away i start to panick about my head and get all sorts of thoughts and worries into my mind that wont go away. I have a feeling of unrealization and that im cut off from my surroundings a little :/ Im going back to college in september and i don't think i can cope with these attacks and the stress off coursework as well !! :( I had meningiters a few years ago and have had a long list of health problems since i just want to live a normal teenage life but i seem to have these out bursts at least once or twice a day mostly at nights !! :/ My symtoms are hot and cold flushes, i feel cold, i tremble and shake, can't sleep, feel like im not with anyone and something terrible is about to happen has anyone got any tips of how to take this horrible feeling away just seem to cry because of how i feel. I would appreciate it so much as im still young and have a lot to learn from other peoples experiences :) Thanks

    • nebby profile image
      Author

      nebby 6 years ago from USA

      @Wendy Leanne: Thank you for sharing your experiences with us today. I think that the more we talk about it, the more people understand how common panic attacks are. I remember when people use to hide the fact when they were having an attack since they felt embarrassed ( I know that I did for a while too), then like you if I let those around me know that I was having an attack it released a lot of pressure & helped me feel better.

      Again - thank you!

    • Wendy Leanne profile image

      Wendy Leanne 6 years ago from Texas

      I had my first panic attack when I was 5 years old. I've had them regularly (usually several a week) since then. I had a massive panic attack when they were prepping me for my c-section with my 2nd baby. It is something I've learned to deal with. Steadying my breathing seems to help a lot. Telling the people around me that I'm having a panic attack when it's occurring has helped me too because trying to appear "normal" when I don't feel normal adds to my panic. Exercising daily has helped keep my anxiety under control.

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      @anonymous: I have had Panic/Anxiety Disorder since childhood. I am 55 years old and could not/would not want to be alive today if it where not for a great doctor and xanax.

      For some taking themselves out of a panic attack may work. Not for me. I thank god that I found the help when I did. I still struggle. There are times when I may need only 4 xanax a day. When it gets bad, and trust me, I have no control of when this will happen, it has a life of its own. I get with my doctor and the xanax is up'd until the "fire" is put out. Then its slowly back to 3 a day again. Alcohol is not the answer. That will make it worse. Accept that this is a fault within your body makeup that you have no control over. Find a good doctor and see them as needed. May God help us all as we try to live with such a terrible condition.

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      GreenfireWiseWo 6 years ago

      Really interesting - thank you.

    • nebby profile image
      Author

      nebby 6 years ago from USA

      @anonymous: I can totally understand how frustrated you are. I went through a very long time frame where I would get an attack night after night, day after day.

      I really don't like to see that you are using alcohol to try and help. Alcohol is a depressant and while you may feel as though it is helping with a current attack or that it relaxes you, it can actually do the opposite and will cause rebound attacks. Then as you probably already know covering up the symptoms doesn't get to the root cause of the problem so it won't get fixed. You will find that alcohol will put you in a vicious loop and only hurt you in the long run.

      Have you tried going to a Homeopath? I know someone who had ( actually a few people), an although they thought it was a bit far fetched, going to the Homeopath worked.

      I don't know their whole story about what the homeopath looked for or suggested for them but their symptoms have greatly decreased and have not had a bad attack in a few months ( just 1 very mild one) and feel a bit more relaxed during the rest of the day. I do know that since their health insurance did not cover the visit they were concerned about the cost and was unsure if herbs or supplements that the Homeopath would suggest would be expensive. I don't know what the cost of the appointment was but I do know that the over the counter supplements run $6-7 for one and $3 something for the other and there was a third one which was a little more expensive but they only used it for the first few weeks, so it wasn't expensive and the supplements are readily available so they picked up their first months or so worth at a local health food store. They just order online now for convenience.

      You do have a realize that you might find the right Homeopath for you the first time, but it may also take going to more than 1 to find the right mesh. Many Homeopaths will allow a phone conversation first, so you can basically get a feel for the person and see if they understand you and you feel as though you can communicate well together.

      For every person there is something that will work for them. Sometimes you have to go through most of them until you find one that fits your specific needs and works with how your body functions. Keep trying to find what works for you - read as much as you can about panic attacks and you will find that something will click for you - please don't rely on alcohol or Xanax and think that there are no better alternatives - there really are.

      I do hope that you will keep on searching & please keep us updated on how you are doing.

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      I have panic attacks all the time, go through phases where I have them more often, then less. I carry my anxiety medication around everywhere ( Xanax) but took them daily and got addicted to them. So then I suffered through withdrawls to quit, and then started drinking. Tried not to drink and the panic attacks came back. It's a vicious never ending circle. I have tried neurofeedback, yoga, exercise, breathing, you name it! Nothing works. I am starting to think it is like Alzheimer, not fixable, and the best I can do is to cover up the symptoms by taking medication ( tried different types, the only thing that works is Xanax or equivalent) or drinking alcohol. Life sucks

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      alexvervier 6 years ago

      I wasn't aware of cholesterol as a panic inducer :-o

      Just goes to show that you always learn something new on Squidoo :-D

      As a person who has had to live with agorophobia and the Dizzy Passenger that came with it for most of my life one thing that got me REALLY angry was when people dismissed it as me just being "silly and introvertive".

      However sadly what many don't realise are that panic attacks afflict over 40 million people in the US alone and growing -- Ergo it's not to be underestimated or mocked.

      It's nice to see someone else educating the public with such a wonderful informative lens but considering you've been involved in health and fitness from the 70s it's no surprise ;-)

      Favorited ya.

      Hugz

      Alex

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      Thanks for the great info, I did not know they are connecting cholesterol and panic attacks together. No one should have to suffer from panic attacks, I suffered for years, if you get a chance please check out my

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      I am find during the day. when my son pick me up and we have to get into the freeway my level of attack get worst. every time i get into a car. I feel stress. I really don't know what to do.

      all this negative thought get inside my head.

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      What a great lens you have here to help people who have panic attacks. I have had them, and they are no fun at all..its terrible. Its been more than a year since I have one, my heart would race. I finally talked to my sister about it and we figured out what was causing it, and then it went away and hasn't returned again.

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      Anthony Godinho 6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      This is an informative lens on an important topic that can help many people. It's nice that you shared your personal experience with it as well. **Blessed by a Squid-Angel**

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      darciefrench lm 6 years ago

      Angel blessed and will be featured on November Blessings under Improving Mental Health.

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      no. the main cure is to always stay calm and relax. Pray and remember god always :)

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      Michelle Mafra 6 years ago from Corona CA

      Yes I have and I can relate to your lens. I have never taken any medication and yoga has helped me a lot.

    • Spook LM profile image

      Spook LM 6 years ago

      No, not really but have been in some very stressful situations. Great lens and counting back is what I have heard auctioneers do to train themselves.

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      y

      es goin g through hell and back weaning of ativan 4 months now still can not get off.

    • ClassyGals profile image

      Cynthia Davis 7 years ago from Pittsburgh

      I've suffered panic attacks all my life. I'll try the math diversion game and see if it helps.

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      anonymous 7 years ago

      Yes, I have. For me it was necessary to discover the underlying fears and beliefs hidden in my subconscious mind. I couldn't do that as long as the doctor had me medicated, so I stopped taking ANY medication. It's refreshing to me to see natural solutions being offered instead of another drug. I understand that some people need the drugs to get past the constant fear of having a panic attack but if you stay on them you never find the cause.

      Thank you for a well-written lens on an important topic.

    • WhiteOak50 profile image

      WhiteOak50 7 years ago

      This is a very informative, helpful lens! You did a great job gathering the information and sharing your own tips. I have learned a lot from reading this, thank you!

    • profile image

      amanda_g 7 years ago

      Hi Iâm Amanda, I enjoyed reading your lens. Itâs really excellent!!!

      Iâve often found people have driving anxiety because they feel out of control and overwhelmed by too much information. They may even remember bad situations from the past. Breathing control and visualization are some of the techniques I get people to use to overcome their anxiety. You can find some more good information on panic attacks and how to overcome driving fear on these other lenses.

      How to stay calm while driving

      Freeway Driving

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      RedSportNiac 7 years ago

      People needs to tackle this problem before it becomes worse.

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      anonymous 7 years ago

      @nebby: Hi All,

      I'm 37 and have had panic attacks off and on since I was about 18. They stopped for quite a few years only to come back nearly two years ago. Sometimes I would feel anxious in a situation and then would feel the beginnings of a panic attack starting and I could try and control it.

      Then for no known reason, I would wake in the middle of the night and notice my heart beating a bit fast to which I would then start to wonder why and next thing I know, I'm having a full on panic attack. I just had one before and it's just after midnight. I've been sick with a bad cold and cough and for some reason, I woke up and it was full on. I couldn't get it down, even after all the techniques I've been using lately. I tried to splash cold water on my face and my heart rate was so high that I called out to my husband to call an ambulance. Thank god he was calm and he helped me concentrate on my breathing.

      My biggest fear is dropping dead of a heart attack and leaving our seven year old son without a mum. I've read everywhere that it's impossible to die from it but I still get scared. I bought this fantastic book called 'Natural Stress and anxiety relief' by Helen Johnson who is Australian and she talks about her own experiences. She even has a step by step guide on how to breath properly called the Johnson breathing technique. This has help me immensely so I really hope you will buy it.

      It's comforting to know I am not alone and I just have to tell myself that I am in control of it, not the other way around. I have to learn not to fight it which will make it worse but to let it flow and then take control. I hope all of you out there will take control of it too without medication. We need to support each other. I wish you and myself all the best to get through this!

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      anonymous 7 years ago

      @nebby: Thank you soooo soooo much! All you said has made me feel more comfortable and it is also nice to know that I am not the only one.

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      anonymous 7 years ago

      I have been suffering with panic attacks for over two years. They started when I collapsed onto my daughter on a bus. My son thought I was dead and everyone around said I wasn't breathing. I was taken by ambulance to A&E and I really thought I was going to die. They discharged me saying nothing was wrong. 10 days later I was going on holiday i got so worked up about the trip i fainted in the airport. My children were terrified. I came round telling my husband please don't let an ambulance take me away. For a year after i had all sorts of health checks but nothing was wrong so i realised I was having panic attacks and bought a book to help. After a year and avoiding certain situations Cinema's I had a panic attack in there, restaurants, queues anything where there was lots of people. I sort help with a Human Givens Counsellor who practise the rewind tech so you erase your first and last and worst panic attack from your mind. I have to say my life changed I could go into town, eat out etc The only thing I can't do is go to an airport and it is driving me mad. My family don't understand and are getting frustrated with me. I went to my doctor and she gave me Valium but when I went to book a holiday I had the most severe anxiety attack and felt quite ill tired, upset tummy for days. I haven't booked a holiday but I so want to. I can't seem to overcome this one hurdle. Years ago I was a stewardess so i am not frightened of flying it is what happened last time at the airport. i do have low blood pressure so when I start to get anxious I feel faint. I am terrified and I just WANT MY LIFE BACK!

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      nebby 7 years ago from USA

      @anonymous: Lacey,

      I totally understand the feeling that you can get with a panic attack. Only those who have had them really understand how horrible they can be.

      You mention that it might take a month for an appointment. Have you tried to also make an appointment with your regular doctor? The reason why I ask it that is that more general practitioners are seeing people with panic attacks and many now can help and you can get an appointment fairly quickly.

      You can also call your state health department & they can offer you some help and many times they can get you in to see a specialist quicker than if you tried yourself.

      Panic attacks can sometimes be spurred on by a high or low blood sugar count so try to eat well and avoid processed foods which contain white flour and sugar. What will happen sometimes is that if your blood sugar spikes it starts to give you the rapid heart beat or sweats which you might believe is the beginning of a panic attack and can then set off a panic attack. By avoiding the sugar spikes you may avoid an attack.

      You can also t to visit your local health store as they have a few herbs and teas that can help you relax. I know someone who has a cup of Valerian root tea when he feels a panic attack on it's way and the warm tea, in addition to taking his mind off of his panic attack relaxes him enough so that an attack does not happen.

      Always remember that panic attacks are just that - they put your body in a state of panic and get your adrenaline pumping - if you can channel that adrenaline into physical movement your symptoms may subside. Don't just sit still and let the panic mode hit you - try to do some exercises - this will help use up the adrenaline - meanwhile try to keep your mind focused on something else (for me it's math puzzles like I have listed on this page).

      If you are working, many companies have programs here employees can go for help for a number of reasons and all are kept confidential. Check with your HR dept and see if they have an employee assistance program - you don't have to say what it is for if you don't want to and they should not ask. Like I said it is confidential. Through an employee assistance program you can often talk with a counselor for no cost and all you need is to pick up the phone. They usually don't need even need your name.

      I am not a doctor or a nurse so I can not give you medical advice only suggestions of who can help you. Try what I have listed above, along with the tips on this page and it should give you a few ideas of what is available for you.

      I wish you the best of luck --and remember - help is out there and there are many who do want to help. Another suggestion is to check for panic attack forums where you can "talk" to others and share experience. Often just sharing can give some relief.

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      anonymous 7 years ago

      My name is Lacey. I too have the same problem but every single time I have them I go to the ER cause that is where I feel comfortable cause everywhere else I literally feel like I am dying. I have been having one for a week straight and thought about suicide BUT dying is one of my biggest fears. Panic attacks make me think scary stuff lately. i am very scared and it is going to take a month for me to get psychiatric help. NONE of the meds they give me help. They game me Lorazepam, Clonazepam, Xanax, Zoloft and Not a dang thing. If you find something, please let me know. I WOULD GIVE ALMOST ANYTHING TO BE NORMAL!! this is by far THEE worst feeling in the world.

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      anonymous 7 years ago

      From time to time i would get these floaty dizzy spells and two different doctors told me it was fluid in the ears, this has gone on for two years now, on the last occasion it was really bad and started to scare me the more i thought of having another attack the more anxious i was getting, yesterday i went to the doctors as i belived it was not my ears all along but panic attacks, and as they were getting worse since the last attack I now have Ativan, i have read about this but frankly i just want to feel good for a while so i am just taking half a day, i hope these will go away oneday so i can be a normal person again but who knows

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      anonymous 7 years ago

      @anonymous: I feel the exact same way. I feel like I lost myself somewhere and I have been getting terrible attacks, at work, and when I am around people. I have nearly all the symptoms, like hot flashes, turning bright red, sweating, light head, upset stomach, and it happens I would estimate 10 times a day. Its terrible, I don't feel safe unless I am at home. I don't want to take meds, so I am trying to beat it naturally. The key points I keep reading in all the websites I visit are that caffine has a big impact on it, and I drink a ton of caffine. Diet effects it, and I don't eat healty at all. So I am going to try to eat better, cut down on caffine, also I ordered some panicly supplements online, and have been taking them for about 5 days. I don't feel a difference yet, but I am hopefull with the changes I am making to my diet, and the pills I will see some results soon.

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      nebby 7 years ago from USA

      @anonymous: Laura,

      I am not a health care professional & I am not familiar with Lexapro but looking it up online I did read that it may take a few weeks to work. I know that many anti-anxiety drugs do take a bit of time.

      Call your doctors office & ask how long it will take to see if this medication is right for you. Also, if it will take a few weeks sometimes they can prescribe a drug like Xanax for short term use (for example: they might prescribe 4-5 pills and 1/2 of a pill may be taken when you start to feel a panic attack coming on).

      Discuss further options with your doctor.

      You may also want to reduce any refined carbs in your diet (sugar, white bread, white rice, processed snacks) as sometimes a sugar rush can also increase panic attacks. Try to eat whole grains, complex carbs like veggies & fruit.

      Basically try to stay away from junk food. Also plain yogurt sometimes relaxes people, so you may want to try & squeeze that into your diet.

      Look online for relaxation techniques & also try the "math trick" that I have on this page. I can't tell you how many people I know that it has helped.

      Also don't be embarrassed about talking about having panic attacks with your friends and family. You will be very surprised to find out that a few of them have the same problem & you can share tips and tricks.

      I know how debilitating panic attacks can be and the more you understand about them, the easier it is to start controlling them.

      Good luck & let me know in a few weeks how you are doing.

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      anonymous 7 years ago

      i have severe anxiety and panic attacks. its ruining my life im not even the same person i was before i no longer hang out with my friends..it took me months to feel comfortable at college..i can't even go to dinner with my bf's parents because i get panic attacks,i can't get a job because im to worried about something happening i HATE this...my doc put me on 10mg of lexapro but it doesn't work at all..id do anything to get rid of all this and have a normal life back again

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      nebby 7 years ago from USA

      @anonymous: LuLu, your symptoms are very common and it is good that you saw your doctor. If you take the xanax as he/she has prescribed and only when you are having a panic attack you shouldn't be concerned about becoming addicted. However, you should also look at more natural ways to help relieve your anxiety. There are a few resources on this page which may be able to help you. You can also check out ttp://www.webmd.com/anxiety-panic/guide/mental-health-panic-disorder along with http://www.mayoclinic.com/print/panic-attacks/DS00... Also visit your local book store and read more about panic attaks. The more you know they less stressed you will be. Also try the math tip more towards the top of this page. It has helped me many times. Good luck!

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      anonymous 7 years ago

      Yes i have had several ones and i feel they are ruining my life! i don't know where to start...what i can do is list the places i had panic attacks..here it goes:

      1. in the middle of the sea while scuba diving

      2. in the train cabin in the middle of the night

      3. in the Vatican city

      4. airport

      5. before going to the dentist

      i don't know but i feel the panic attacks are ruining my life...my heart pounds so hard that i feel the muscles of my heart hurt so bad! seriously its just hurts me! recently i saw my GP and he checked my blood pressure was high and i told him i'm having panic attacks and asked to be given some anxiety pills and i was given xanax and i think it works but i don't want to get addicted to them i take them only if i feel my chest is hurting from the heart pounding... please somebody tell me what to do?