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Anxiety/panic attacks - what are your symptoms?(5 Posts)
I suffer from a bit of anxiety and have panic attacks from time to time. Have not had one for a while, but this week was a bit stressful and I had a bad one a few days ago. It took me a long time to work out that the episodes I was having were panic attacks. I had quite a few when pregnant a few years ago and in the weeks following. At the time I thought there was something wrong with my heart.
Now I know they are panic attacks, but I have to keep reminding myself that they are, as it is quite scary. (have spoken to GP about it)
The one a few days ago was typical. I was sitting at work and suddenly felt a bit funny, and had a funny tingling feeling in my left arm and tightness in my chest and feeling quite unwell. I tried to stay calm and of course if passed, but if not for my earlier experiences, I would have been convinced it was a heart attack !!!
I just wondered, do other people have similar symptoms?
You have just described the panic attacks I used to have. I was diagnosed with PTSD after I lost a baby and as well as that was very ill afterwards with complications.
I do still get stressed, the odd pain in the chest, but no longer the scary heart palpitations and thinking I'm having a heart attack.
Too much adrenalin pumping round the body makes you stressed. When at my worst I would resort to running on the spot, even in the middle of the night to burn up the adrenalin. I also practiced breathing exercises. I got them off the MIND website. I seriously recommend you have a look at their section on panic attacks. Once you realise they can't do you any harm is when you can beat them, sorry sound a bit like one of those american self help books. They really did start to affect my life badly. I gave up alcohol as well and that helped. I may drink one G&T now but never wine as this seemed to make me have them!
I get opposite symptoms in that my bp drops and I feel faint (and do faint).
I find that taking myself away from the situation ie going outside for fresh air instead of sitting at my desk and worrying can help.
Also I listened to meditation/hypnosis CDs each night when things were really bad - they helped me out of a big hole, Paul McKenna's relaxation one is particularly good.
I'm also prescribed low-dose valium in case of attacks, but obviously cannot take this while pg.
Strangely my eczema is a blessing when spotting my anxiety levels are getting too high before I hit a spate of panic attacks - it flares up massively with stress, so it's a good warning sign.
Panic attacks - heart racing, feeling like everything's compressed towards me (best way of describing it) and having to really really force myself to almost focus with tunnel vision to get through the situation. I also start to stammer when I get wound up, stressed or upset - that quite often comes out as well.
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