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Woke up feeling this way...hasn't stopped since

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Old 02-02-2008, 09:55 AM   #1
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Dupont, Pa USA
Posts: 2
amie274 HB User
Woke up feeling this way...hasn't stopped since

Hi everyone,
I am a 34yr old female and here is my story. Last week in the middle of the night I woke up thinking I was having a heart attack. My heart was racing, I was clammy, dizzy, felt like I was going to pass out etc..the only thing that seemed to help was splashing my face with ice cold water and going outside into the cold air and taking deep breaths. This went on for a few hours until finally I was able to fall asleep. The next morning I woke up for work and was in the shower when it hit me again. I was like this for a few hours, dizzy, clammy hands/feet, couldn't breath, no appetite what so ever, sometimes I feel like a burning in my chest and just anxious. I called my doctor who was able to get me in that day. He did an EKG in his office which was normal and ordered blood work for thyroid/anemia/pregnancy etc.. which all came back normal. He said it was probably viral and told me to call him if I still felt this way after a few days. That was Wed and I was still feeling this way Sunday. Morning and nights are the worse, the rest of the day has its moments depending on what I am doing. I called him Sunday and he said he wanted to set me up for a 24 hr Holter monitor, and called me in Xanax for the anxiety. I took 1/2 of a .25mg pill ev 6 hours as needed. The Xanax helped tremendously but if I tried to not take the next dose the feelings came back. The doctor wanted me to stop the Xanax for the Holtor monitor so I stopped taking it. That night I thought I was going to die. I was tossing and turning in bed, hot, clammy, anxious etc.. I HAD to take it. Within 1/2 hr I felt relief. The next morning the day of the test I went to work and was going to leave in the afternoon to get the monitor. I work in customer service for an insurance company. I was ok when I got there but about 5 minutes before I was to go on the phones the anxiety started. Thank god a few of my coworkers are dealing with the same thing, they are very supportive. I had to role up my sleeves, take deep breaths and felt like I was going to pass out in front of everyone. I had to take the Xanax. It helped me again. I called my doctor almost crying and he said I could continue the Xanax but to still go for the Holter monitor. The results from the monitor came back normal.

My doctor seems to agree with me that it is anxiety. But he is sending me for an echocardiogram to rule everything out. He started me on 20mg of Celexa, I am to take 1/2 pill for the first six days then can take a whole pill daily. He said if I need the Xanax I can take that as well. I started the Celexa yesterday and I needed the Xanax this morning. The mornings are the worse for me because the minute I wake up I feel anxious. Will this ever go away?

I just don't understand how you can wake up one day and just feel this way forever. Is that how it starts? I should mention a few things. This started 3 days before I got my period. My father also suffered from anxiety around the same age I am now, he currently takes Buspar because his anxiety came back again. When I was younger(like 8/9) my parents said I used to pass out alot especially in confined places(church, school etc) and I went for all kinds of tests and they couldn't find anything wrong. My blood pressure is fine and I am in good shape. I used to exercise everyday either treadmill, walking my dog or taking an aerobics class, I haven't exercised since this happened because I was worried it was my heart.

I am married with two children and feel this is so unfair to them. I want to be happy again.

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Old 02-02-2008, 10:23 AM   #2
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: california
Posts: 61
erika74 HB User
Re: Woke up feeling this way...hasn't stopped since

Hi Amie your story is just how mine started. I woke up on night and had this feeling of death. It was awful. I went to the ER and they said it was probably a panic attack. I would say the same thing to my husband about just wanting to be happy and normal again. After 2 mos of not believing the Drs. I started to take Lexapro. It is helping tremendously. I just want you to know that I too felt the same way as you. It is scary but just know there is nothing wrong and try some deep breathing. take care, erika

Old 02-02-2008, 10:31 AM   #3
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Dupont, Pa USA
Posts: 2
amie274 HB User
Re: Woke up feeling this way...hasn't stopped since

Thank you Erica for the support. It makes me feel that there is light at the end of the tunnel when I hear other people tell me they also felt the same way.

Old 02-02-2008, 11:34 AM   #4
Senior Veteran
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: NY
Posts: 592
Looly HB UserLooly HB User
Re: Woke up feeling this way...hasn't stopped since

It all sounds so familiar. I sympathize with all of you. I have the same problem. It started a few years ago. I live in a very stressful world - job, kids, elderly parents, and have been getting these attacks for the past few years but recently they've increased in the past two weeks. Everything bothers me and everything roams through my head, day in and day out. My blood pressure soars at times and I get hot inside and then I get chilled and start to shiver. I was sure something terrible is wrong with me - but now that I take a real small dose of blood pressure med (which I might stop) plus either xanax or valium, (with fingers crossed) I've slept two nights without waking. Anxiety if you have it, rules your life. Otherwise I am a happy person - until I get THAT feeling. I have channeled my thoughts and when I think of something that's going to upset me I wipe it from my mind. Even thinking of anxiety makes me anxious so I try not to think about it. When it starts in the middle of the night, recently, I try to think of things that will make me happy and then the attack doesn't get blown out of proportion.
Dr gave me Lexapro to start. I hate taking pills. I hate taking Xanax/Valium but have not had side effects. I don't know how Lexapro will affect me. If it would help I'd be so inclined to take it but I have heard stories about side effects and normally I get every side effect possible.

Old 02-03-2008, 02:10 AM   #5
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Moldova
Posts: 63
phantom50 HB User
Re: Woke up feeling this way...hasn't stopped since

I am in 50+ and I woke up in the middle of the night with high pulse palpitating fast breathing, cold feet getting hot in the chest. All symptoms are similar of getting a heart attack. This is something I have been experiencing for more than 8 years. The first time they did all kind of heart tests, but couldn't find anything serious accept high pulse specially when that was happening.
The Xanax always helps, but stopped it comes back. So the doctors put me on Valium 2 mg 2 times and Seroxat, (SSRI) CR 12.5.
2 nights ago the same thing happend. I tried to forget the whole thing and eventually fell asleep. In the morning fet shaken nervous and felt down. I went to the doctor and he prescribed the same tablets.
I find it comes in like a phone call, and don't know when it will come. The only thing we can do is not to panic and try to keep calm till it passes away. I normally carry Ativan in case that happens when away from home. I try not to take tablets when that happens and let the feeling pass slowly. It keeps coming and going like a wave for a few hours. I am happy if i can let it pass without extra medication. Keep it mind it is not a heart attack. You will be alright when it fades out.

Old 02-03-2008, 03:09 AM   #6
Senior Veteran
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Uk
Posts: 1,367
Worrybucket HB UserWorrybucket HB UserWorrybucket HB UserWorrybucket HB User
Re: Woke up feeling this way...hasn't stopped since


I think like the other posters, it comes on quite suddenly, it did for me.

But if you really think back and put some things together, you will be clearer on the picture of why you are now suffering. I have yet to meet someone who suffers from anxiety and has absolutely nothing going on in their lives which may contribute to it, and anyone who says different, in my opinion doesnt delve deep enough.

Mine is similiar to your in that i remember a few episodes of panic when i was a kid, ( i couldnt eat in restaurants, hated being locked in anywhere) etc etc.

I think the route is set at an early age, if you are that way, then you will always be slightly that way.

I was pretty much fine right through my teens and twenties , then it hit me just before i got married and it came out in a strange way. I dont suffer classic panics like yours seem to be, i just become what i can only describe as short of breath, i need to make big deep sighs to get the air into my lungs, and its never enough. Mine got really bad last year and my Doc put me on 20mg prozac daily and that helped quite a lot, although it took about 3 months to kick in. I also have a CBT therapist, which has helped also. but if im totally honest i can still have these attacks, but only occasionally, and not quite as violent. BUT they are still there in the wings !! i dont want to up my dosage so im trying to cope. But i just wish it would go away completely.

Have a look into CBT i think you may find it helpful, and keep us posted, and good luck.

As my Therapist says which does help !! "you never died of an attack yet, you wont !!".

Good luck (:

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