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Old 01-02-2012, 12:22 PM   #1
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Question Anyone else experience this?

My dh started working out of town in May 2011. I felt stressed at first but have gotten use to him not being at home (have two small children and full time job). I was driving long distance one day in June and started feeling lightheaded like I was going to pass out and pulled over and ate because I thought that was the problem.

Fast forward to September - Dec: I have four to five "episodes" a month where I feel this same way. Legs start going numb and feel light headed - hard to concentrate. Happened first when I was driving in the city (which makes me nervous to begin with) then progressed to when I was in crowds. And all of the "crowds" I felt comfortable with, it was family or friends.

I went to the doctor and she feels I'm having anxiety attacks and prescribed Citalopram (20mg) for me. Took it for two days and felt like I was "high" and was a complete zombie. Second day I didn't even get out of bed. So, I"m sure against better judgement I haven't taken since.

So, does anyone else have this and is it really anxiety? I miss my dh tons but I don't feel uncomfortable with him being gone (haven't sense the summer) so I'm confused why this attacks are happening all the sudden when I'm in crowds.

 
Old 01-03-2012, 09:51 AM   #2
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Re: Anyone else experience this?

You may be a "hidden hyper-ventilator" and not realize it. Google and learn all you can about it.

Re-breathing in a lunch size paper sack 5 mins. every hour during the day may solve the problem (tape bottom of sack closed). DO NOT USE A PLASTIC BAG, YOU WILL SUFFOCATE. I attached paper sack to a 4" plastic tube about 1" size opening. Pressed nose closed while re-breathing in the sack. Take slow deep breaths and slow, slow exhales at other times.

If you are hyper-ventilating, it will take a little while to get use to re-breathing in the sack without feeling like you are short breathed.

When we hyperventilate, we do not always show symptoms that anything is wrong with us. I have been there, done that, and not diagnosed for 10 years.

I too was told by 3 internist and 2 cardiologist it was anxiety causing the problem, my symptom was spiking blood pressure. A hypertension specialist at Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, Texas recognized the problem and prescribed re-breathing in a paper sack. He told me it was not anxiety, it was lack of oxygen to the vital organs causing my body to panic.

Our body needs a balance of oxygen and carbon dioxide. If we blow off too much carbon dioxide the oxygen cannot be released to the vital organs. There are many symptoms this can cause.

You probably are under more stress than you realize with husband away and your body is reacting.

 
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Old 01-03-2012, 11:32 AM   #3
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Re: Anyone else experience this?

To cklmom & Missy800

cklmom, I know exactly what you are going through, you described my symptoms to perfection. I've been dealing with them for 20 years. I went through heart studies and all they found were PAC's and that shouldn't cause the panic. I have never heard of the drug you mentioned, but it does not sound like it's the answer to your problem. I have been seeing the same therapist for 20 years and he has prescribed Xanax. I have a very low dose,
.05 mg and when I get an attack I pop one under my tongue. When I started 20 years ago I started with 1/2 dose of .05. It helps immensely and all the time I have been taking it I use it only as needed and the dose has stayed low. It doesn't work for everyone and it can be addicting so being monitored is very important. I take such a low dose and have only increased it once in 20 years, so my doctor doesn't worry about any addiction. Crowds really seem to bring on anxiety, even if everyone there is family. I feel spaced out with all the noise and that brings anxiety.

Missy800, I am going to try your advice, I'm thinking it will work for me. My husband notices that when I start to panic the first thing I do is start gulping air because I feel like I can't breathe. I am going to look up the condition you mentioned. Thanks for the heads up!

The weirdest part is I am usually unflappable. People think I have everything under control and I am very easy going. Only my husband and my best friend know I have these attacks.

cklmom, I hope you find a workable solution. Living with anxiety is the pits!
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Old 01-03-2012, 11:47 AM   #4
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Re: Anyone else experience this?

Thank you both for your answers! I will be looking into the sack therapy because it does seem like when I take deep breaths I can calm myself down to a better degree then just sitting there freaking out about it. Though oddly enough a good blast of cold air to the face helps too (if I'm driving) so maybe my blood pressure is going up when it happens too even though I feel light headed.

When I went to the doctor I was thinking they would give me something just to take when I felt one coming on because the medicine they gave me is an anti-depressent (and is used to treat anxiety too) but it I guess had the opposite effect on me since that isn't what the main cause was. She had suggested if this medicine didn't work they would try the heart monitor next but I'm thinking it might be I just need something like Xanax?

Thank you so much for your answers! It is nice to not be alone sometimes cause I really worried people thought I was going crazy sometimes I just couldn't understand how it could be anxiety (understood the driving part) but not when I was with family and friends which is usually my "calming" effect for me.

 
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