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If youve recovered from panic attacks. How?

(48 Posts)
Rinkydinkypink Wed 10-May-17 20:10:33

I want rid of them for good. They just appear, rattle me for 20-40 minutes. Alter my rational thoughts. Make me feel horrific and then just bugger off!

How did you get rid of yours?

It's a brilliant time for me deal with this now. My life is stable. I'm paying for Counselling weekly.

I hate hate hate them.

Joto369 Wed 10-May-17 20:19:46

Ignore them. Read Dr Claire Weekes books. Or DARE by Barry McDonagh (I think!). It goes against everything you feel but when I let them pass or say come on do your best they are much less intense or they sod off. If you fight panic you trigger more adrenaline which makes it worse. Easier said than done l am fully aware of but learn what they are how they work and that helps.

Rinkydinkypink Wed 10-May-17 20:32:33

Thank you so much for the book recommendations! I'll take a looksmile.

I'm so determined to get this sorted out. I've tried the not being afraid but the fact is I am. It's the fear of the fear. They are so strong!

Sunnydaysrock Wed 10-May-17 20:37:28

CBT was the break through for me. Gives you the tools to deal with the attack, then because you know you can handle them you get less anxious about having one, therefore you have less panic attacks. I refused to avoid the situations that brought them on as you feel your life closing in around you. I do certain things to minimise the chances of having an attack (eg sit on aisle seat in theatres etc), but I do everything I want.

Rinkydinkypink Wed 10-May-17 20:41:22

Was this just standard nhs CBT? I'm finding I get weaker with each one. I feel ok and can reason it all away but it comes and bites me especially during my pmt times. Once I feel that bite it really shakes me up.

Do you know of any online resources for CBT or was it all counsellor based.

lucy101101 Wed 10-May-17 20:43:33

I found mindfulness more useful than CBT in the sense that it made me detach more from the panic feelings rather than try and reason my way out of it and hence stop the adrenalin cycle.

Joto369 Wed 10-May-17 20:43:51

Exactly it's the fear of the fear! It's awful and unpleasant but remember every panic attack you've had - did the worse thing ever happen? I haven't gone totally mad (that's the feeling I get) and I won't. CBT also good yes. Meditation apps also help. They always pass and you can learn to live with them or hopefully get rid!!! I'm still working on it but much better xx

Joto369 Wed 10-May-17 20:45:44

Also mine have got worse as approaching meno and always worse with pls - hormones do play a part.xx

Sunnydaysrock Wed 10-May-17 20:46:49

No, it was at the Priory Hospital through my work healthcare, at the time, about 15 years ago. The bits I remember and still use are so simple though, mainly breathing exercises (concentrating on the out breath), and just small things like knowing it will pass, you will survive etc. I'm sorry I don't know more about the CBT available. Have you asked your GP, or looked into private? I had counselling too for a short while but it did nothing for dealing with my panic attacks. Always good to talk but you need techniques.

Funnyonion17 Wed 10-May-17 20:48:22

Most definitely Claire weekes method, as already recommended up thread. Pure brilliance and logical

Moltenpink Wed 10-May-17 20:55:32

A couple of things I learnt for when the panicky feeling starts were to hum happy birthday under my breath ( there is a yoga breathing exercise that has a similar effect) and rating my panic from 1 to 10 (as in "oh, I'm at about a 4, going to 5, back to 3 now") which was a good distraction!

Being open and telling people I might have an attack also helped, as it took the pressure off worrying how they might react if one occurred.

mogulfield Wed 10-May-17 21:05:43

Loads of things have helped me overcome them, I could write war and peace on this but in a nutshell... CBT was the main help, and bizarrely just being informed about them. As in being told they're panic attacks and not anything that can harm me helped a lot.
I was incredibly claustrophobic and the only thing that helped with that specifically was forcing myself incrementally into small spaces. If I was scared of flying for example I wouldn't run away, I'd feel panicky, learn it didn't harm me and then realise the next time I'd be ok, if that makes sense. Don't get me wrong was bloody scary at the time.
Exercise everyday.
Meditate every day (I highly recommend the headspace app, as it introduces slowly all sorts of different techniques and ideas).
No caffeine, and avoid high sugar foods.
I recommend the book from panic to power by Lucinda Bassett, that book was the beginning of me getting better!
And throughout it all, mindfulness has made a huge difference, it's under pinned my recovery. You can't physically panic if your brain is firmly in the present, e.g. You focus on the leaves on a tree, the veins in the leaves, the way they move in the breeze, the temporary distraction is enough to bring me calm smile
I've been there and they're rubbish and if I can help in anyway just shout (feel free to pm me)

Sunnydaysrock Wed 10-May-17 21:09:24

Yes Molten I found telling people helped. Most notably for me was meeting my anaesthetist before having a planned caesarian and telling him. Also going for a meal with friends when I was quite stressed, I emailed them before hand. Lots of little things you can do to help.

Tortycat Wed 10-May-17 21:15:36

Cbt has by far the best evidence base for panic attacks (counselling not found to be that helpful for this specifically). Education about panic from a cbt perspective is really useful, and then possibly mindfulness or ACT to follow on if needed. A practitioner (nhs or private) should offer cbt for panic specifically, rather than very generic therapy.

With treatment Its actually got one of the best outcomes of mh problems so stay optimistic

totallyliterally Wed 10-May-17 21:32:51

Currently on waiting list for CBT (3-6 months) and been prescribed propranolol and would go as far as to say they have been life changing.

Have been taking them a month, and I've had no panic attacks or the physical feeling of getting them.

I'm not 'cured' as my head still worries about getting them and all the what's ifs. That's what I'm hoping CBT will work on.

But as a starting point the propranolol have been amazing.

Aria2015 Wed 10-May-17 21:35:18

I had CBT and it was amazing. Must say though that I felt worse before I felt better so it's not an instant fix but it's been a long term fix.

user1473256244 Wed 10-May-17 21:38:43

Telling myself calmly it will pass, it feels horrid, but it will pass. This helped me feel more in control and they faded away.
I used to get them a lot when driving on the motorway!! Still get an occasional pacicky feeling when in the middle lane, but I focus on telling myself everything is Ok and it passes quickly.

Rinkydinkypink Thu 11-May-17 18:06:15

Wow I didn't expect so many replies. I'm going to look at books and I've seen a man on YouTube called Henry Barry who has been brilliant in just ten minutes. I'm so determined to conquer these!

smudgedlipstick Thu 11-May-17 19:26:50

Watching this with interest, I had a long corse of counselling last year due to high anxiety and dealt with a lot of problems I have with myself and my life. This was so helpful, and have been a lot better since then, but due to a stressful situation that I am going through at the moment I have found I am starting to have panic attacks and anxiety attacks again. I have just realised that although the counselling was helpful, it didn't actually teach me how to get through an attack when it happens sad I had two today for no bloody reason at all

CuppaTeaAndAJammieDodger Thu 11-May-17 19:29:36

Mindfulness was the turning point for me, had years of beta blockers and counselling which both helped to an extent but I can pinpoint when I really started to feel some control over them and it was the day I started learning/practising mindfulness.

DN4GeekinDerby Thu 11-May-17 19:45:03

Great thread.

For me, once I can get past the first awful burst, I find breathing exercises and when possible writing/typing string of consciousness style everything that comes to mind. Giving it kinda physical form that I can then review and edit as I see what is a real thing I do feel or want to deal with from all the anxious noise of things I can't do anything about or is just the negative space talking. I do find talking to others helps but for me only once I'm out of the attack - otherwise the negativity kinds of feeds on itself - which makes the writing helpful as it helps me articulate which I often struggle with.

Februaryjones Thu 11-May-17 19:46:32

Propanolol. And CBT.

Ashers40 Thu 11-May-17 20:41:05

The break through moment for me was in a CBT session when the therapist made me take very quick shallow breaths for a minute or two to demonstrate that it was this that caused the physical symptoms that used to terrify me, and so exacerbate the symptoms. I now understand that when on the verge of a panic attack I need to slow down my breathing until it passes. If you remove the fear of an attack it's half the battle

Rinkydinkypink Thu 11-May-17 22:45:57

I've bought the Clare weekes book today. I also tried the humming happy birthday technique when I felt one coming and it prevented it escalating into uncontrollable!

Joto369 Fri 12-May-17 06:44:05

Fabulous!!! Keep putting things into practice - you will have setbacks they are nornal so don't be upset when they happen - it's hard work but youll get there!!!!

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