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Me waking on the night full of fear and panic

(7 Posts)
carocaro Sun 21-Aug-11 08:32:08

Its every night, I wake heart beating, feeling claustrophobic and full of panic and anxiety. I already take amytriptyline because of this but it seems not to be working. There are a few things in my life at the mo, £ tight, DH's job wobbly, youngest and last DS starting school and I need to get a job, things many of us are facing but I feel gripped by the pressure and expectation. I also really miss my Dad who died 12 years ago, which I suppose is normal when life is rocky, but sometimes it feels like he just died and the weight of the grief is very real and physical and like something I will never come to terms with.

Shall i go back to the docs? What else drug wise might be an option? I used citalopram but it was not good for me, felt dreadfull.

frazer41 Sun 21-Aug-11 09:16:09

Hi Carocaro,

Sorry to hear you are having such a hard time. The symptoms you describe are really upsetting and I get them too. My ds is now 6 and when he was born I had pnd. My symptoms are so much better than when he was born but at times of stress I still get them coming back.

I am no expert but I came off all anti d in Dec and was doing really well. In May this year I got preg with 2nd child and began to experience major panic and anxiety again, also horrible thoughts. I could not believe I reacted this way as we were desperate for another baby. Unfortunatly I lost this baby and the anxiety symptoms got worse.

My gp said it would be a shame to start anti d again after being off for so long but each day is hard work trying to focus to stop anxiety and I am only sleeping 5 hrs max. Yesterday I had had enough and I just wanted a break. I have been fighting anxiety symptoms medication free for 3 weeks now. I decided to have 2mg of diazempam in the morning and felt more relaxed during the day and actually fell asleep with husband and ds in the cinema. lol!

Last night I took another one and had a fab sleep, when I woke this morning around 5 the anxiety was getting ready to start so I had another diaz and went back to sleep and woke at 8am. When I looked in the mirror I noticed I looked rested and more like myself. Diaz is not a solution as it's only short term but showed me I would rather be on med and be myself than struggle on.

I am going to go back to my gp and go back on Setraline, it puts weight on me but its better than being filled with anxiety.

If your med are not working go back. I think when my heart used to beat so hard I got beta blockers and diaz for a bit. I also used citalopram but it was no use and got given Setraline instead. There will be an anti d out there for you and its just getting the one for you. Its hard going trying to come off one med and try another to get the one that helps but when you do it will be so worth it. I would also ask for therapy too like cbt as it seems the lose of your father is still deeply upsetting you.

Hope today is a better day. xx

madmouse Sun 21-Aug-11 11:02:05

Don't just look at drugs. It is pretty hard to medicate anxiety well. It is possible that you need some counselling (maybe CBT based) or even bereavement counselling as you sound a bit stuck in grieving for your dad.

Have you ever tried mindfulness? It is a simple to learn technique that you can use to focus on the here and now, away from what you are panicking about. You can learn a lot of it for free via Youtube videos. Worth a try, I was taught it by my therapist and it is very useful.

madmouse Sun 21-Aug-11 11:03:37

frazer diazepam feels very nice when you're anxious, a real help. Unfortunately like all benzos very addictive and after about 4 weeks you will no longer notice its effects.

ThatsNotYours Sun 21-Aug-11 12:54:33

Caracaro you have an awful lot on your mind. My panic and anxiety occurred for no valid reason in situations which should not have caused them, such as meeting friends for lunch, and ADs did help.  

However, where I have underlying stressors, although ADs help my sense of perpective, I know I still have to address them, so talking through with friends how to tackle them usually makes them feel less insurmountable. Agree with Madmouse, don't just look at drugs. X 

ThatsNotYours Sun 21-Aug-11 13:09:00

Re: Benzos
I have been taking Temazapam to help me sleep for many years for when I really need a total sleep recharge/sleep cycle breakdown. However, never for more than 3 consecutive nights, followed by at least 3 nights off - generally, I take a lot less than this. 

Either way, Benzos aren't a panacea, are easy to develop a tolerance to, addictive and if you want them to work always use sparingly. Very similar to alcohol really, but a lot quicker to get into problems with if not used wisely (discuss with GP your longer term plans). Also, a responsible GP won't keep handing them out for continued consecutive use.   

SingleMan25b Thu 25-Aug-11 02:15:30

As a man with longterm PTSD which has given me a little knowledge of how the brain works and the NHS - could I suggest you ask your GP about talking threapies and not medication. They may suggest something, better than medication, possibly CBT as madhouse describes above.

If you've not already done so, also try a meditation relaxation tape - I thought they were nonsense, but experience taught me they really can help, especally if you get your breathing right.

Also try and keep to a regular routine and exercise. If you have the opportunity try running or swimming - exercise can work wonders. Both create chemicals that are positive for mind and body.

What your currently experiencing is not nice, but it is quite normal - one in four people will have some form of cognitive issue during their lifetime.

Anyhow, I'm sure things will work out for you, but do talk with your GP.

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