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  • Agrophobia? Vertigo? I'm scared I might faint.

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    Old 11-03-2004, 11:28 PM   #1
    Fitzgirl
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    Unhappy Agrophobia? Vertigo? I'm scared I might faint.

    I was sitting in the bookstore the other day. I had found a nice private corner for myself where I spent a good hour and a half reading. It was relaxing. But then all of a sudden this wave of fear overcame me... fear, anxiety, paranoia... I had to get out of there. I don't know why, but I had to go. The only thing was, I didn't think I could get up, without fainting. I gathered my things, put on my coat, shaking the whole time. I can't expalin it. I thought I was going to have another anxiety attack! I kept telling myself, I have my cell phone. I 'm safe. if something goes wrong, i can just call home... but the thing was, I didn't even think I could speak. I put my headphones on and gradually made it out of the store and I was OK.

    Just yesterday, I was walking outside, when I suddenly felt really light headed... after that, I felt as if I was coming down with a cold. I went to the drugstore and suddenly felt like I had to get out of there too... I was so scared I was going to faint on the way home. ... I'm always worried. Why can't I stop worrying? Mostly guilty. For no good reason.

    What's going on with me? Do I have agrophobia? Vertigo? Any advice would be great. Thanks!

    ~ K

     
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    Old 11-04-2004, 03:42 PM   #2
    hry33
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    Re: Agrophobia? Vertigo? I'm scared I might faint.

    they all sound like panic attacks to me, lots of info on panic attacks on the net
    you wont faint
    fear of fainting or feeling that you will or should faint during a panic attack is common but it doesnt happen

    ask a bookshop for any books on overcoming agoraphobia or panic disorder, an anxiety attack and a panic attack are the same thing

    if another one happens, breathe deep and slow, especially avoid rapid shallow panting, relax and accept it, dont tense up or fight back against it, and wait a while, it will soon pass

    the best meds, IMO are valium type, a small insurance dose can be taken with an extra tablet disolved under the tongue at the start of a panic attack

    sadly many docs have been brainwashed to prescribe an antidepressant only for your problems, you may need to try several docs to get a valium type med, xanax is promoted for panic attacks but also used by drug addicts, so ask for any valium type med and let doc decide which

     
    Old 11-05-2004, 10:09 AM   #3
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    Re: Agrophobia? Vertigo? I'm scared I might faint.

    hry33 is right.

    I sometimes get exactly what you're experiencing Fitzgirl. It feels so good to find out that I'm not the only one! These panic attacks don't happen frequently (at least not enough to impede my normal day to day life), but I DO get them on occasion. I don't know what it is... Out of the blue, something will trigger an attack, and I'll feel nervous, jittery, and panicky. Almost like I have to get out of a place before I faint. I get dizzy, start breathing hard, and my heart races. But I've since learned to start controlling my stress and anxiety to the best way possible. It may not be 100% effective, but it helps. What I do is exactly what hry33 mentioned. Whatever you do...DON"T fight the feeling! Just relax (it sounds hard, but FORCE yourself to relax), take DEEP slow breaths, and concentrate on something else. I usually use the word "Relax" to just echo through my mind. I breath slowly and deeply. I don't fight the panic feeling. If you do, it will only get worse. Trust me...I've tried! LOL* Just tell yourself that what you're feeling is not real, that you are not in any real danger, and that this feeling will soon pass away. And surprisingly, I've found that it does! :-D

    What I do is usually tell myself that my feeling is irrational, and that I am not in any danger, and that I need to calm down. I sometimes have to be firm with myself. And then, after a few times doing this after panic attacks, my body calms down faster.

     
    Old 11-05-2004, 04:11 PM   #4
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    Re: Agrophobia? Vertigo? I'm scared I might faint.

    Thanks for your great advice. I do realize that many of my thoughts and feeligns are irrational... I started getting these panic attacks after I quit drinking things with caffeine and soy milk... (turns out i'm allergic and makes me lightheaded and hypotension) It's just that they come out of nowhere... I can be having a great day, carefree, and suddenly something out of the blue will trigger it. But when I'm not having a panic attack, I'm still anxious, and plagued by feelings of irrational guilt.
    I'm definitely trying not to fight the feelings. I guess I just have to keep at it, and it'll go away in time. Thanks again :-)

     
    Old 11-05-2004, 04:27 PM   #5
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    Re: Agrophobia? Vertigo? I'm scared I might faint.

    Thanks for your great advice. I'll definitely look into valium... I've been taking St. Johns Wort... I dont' know how effective it is. I took some this morning and was having a great day... and then by late afternoon something triggered feelings of anxiety, but not an attack.

    It's good to know I'm not going to faint... I can't fathom the thought of collapsing in isle 6 of the grocery store! Eep!

     
    Old 11-06-2004, 03:32 PM   #6
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    Re: Agrophobia? Vertigo? I'm scared I might faint.

    Well, it sounds as if you developed anxiety after the initial episode in the bookstore, but that episode wasn't necessarily anxiety, especially since you said you were calm reading, but then again, I know panic attacks CAN come out of the blue. But also, when you assumed you could have had vertigo, you were right about that, too. When I was dealing with my balance disorder, I had those same sensations. I also suffered years ago with panic attacks, but I could always tell the difference between the vertigo and panic because with the vertigo I WOULD actually faint or have to lay flat on the floor. BUT this is most likely NOT what you have, and I don't mean to scare you. If you suffer from anxiety, it probably was a panic attack, and now you have anxiety about it happening again. Balance disorders aren't that common, really.
    ~Katalina
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    Old 11-06-2004, 04:38 PM   #7
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    Re: Agrophobia? Vertigo? I'm scared I might faint.

    Thanks for your advice Katalina... I don't think I have a balance disorder, aside from the vertigo... which was really out of the blue. I have these Obessive Compuslive Intrusive thoughts which cause me to feel really anxious, worried and guilty, so I think what I was feeling was a build up from all of it. I've been doing what sweet_chic & hry suggested and just not trying to fight the feelings. It's helping... and haven't felt like fainting since... I just feel like my nerves are shot sometimes from all this over-analyzing and thinking. Thanx again :-)

     
    Old 11-06-2004, 09:00 PM   #8
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    Re: Agrophobia? Vertigo? I'm scared I might faint.

    Hello, excellent thread. The exact thing happens to me and the advice given was good, slow deep breathes, stand your ground, do not fight it. A valium or xanax dissolved under the tongue should take it out in about 8 minutes, but think twice about using these drugs on a daily basis as you can get addicted to them. In fact panic attacks are a withdrawal symptom from these drugs. Never had the first one until I tried to come off Xanax. I have been off these kinds of drugs for going on 7 weeks now and still have problems, including, you guessed it, panic attacks. Usually over about nothing. Am now learning to deal with them. If worse comes to worse I can take a small dose of a beta blocker, this lowers the heartrate and blood pressure. Is all it addresses...

     
    Old 11-06-2004, 11:08 PM   #9
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    Re: Agrophobia? Vertigo? I'm scared I might faint.

    I would stop the St. John's Wort...it is not regulated, therefore, your dosage will never be consistant. I also took it at one time, and it eventually seemed to exacerbate my feelings of anxiety. I highly recommend seeing a doctor and describing how you are feeling...if you don't like what he has to say, get a second opinion. I wish you the best of luck. Anxiety and panic disorder are both horrible to live with...I know, I've lived with it as long as I can remember. I hope things get better for you.
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    Old 11-07-2004, 10:23 PM   #10
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    Re: Agrophobia? Vertigo? I'm scared I might faint.

    howard678,
    After I got off of benzos, I didn't feel even CLOSE to being okay for the first 3-4 months, so it takes time, and that's actually very normal with coming off of those. It takes some people a YEAR to stop having symptoms. That's not meant to be discouraging. For me, knowing that it was only the withdrawal and not ME was comforting. Actually, after I got off of Klonopin (and I was VERY, VERY addicted to this drug) I learned to control my panic and anxiety without drugs at all, and I had 5-6 panic attacks a day for years. In fact, I was agoraphobic as well, and now, I'm feeling so much better it's amazing. I basically use cognitive-behavioral therapy, and MADE myself get over it. I WANTED it sooo badly, I wanted so badly to be better and defeat my panic that, with effort, it happened. Good luck
    ~Katalina
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    Old 11-08-2004, 09:05 AM   #11
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    Re: Agrophobia? Vertigo? I'm scared I might faint.

    I know this won't sound reassuring, but it is possible to faint during a panic attack. I have fainted more times than I can count. My doctor said that it is a way of the body resetting itself. Most times you have warning and are able to sit down and take care of the feeling. I have passed out in numerous classes and at work a few times. Just make sure if you feel like you are going to faint to lay down...or perhpas wear a helmet around (JK... although I was told to do this!)

     
    Old 11-10-2004, 02:15 AM   #12
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    Re: Agrophobia? Vertigo? I'm scared I might faint.

    Katalina,

    Thank you very much for your reply and congratulations on the big victory over benzos and panic. Yea, I am prepared to deal with some symptoms for some more months if need be. But I do hope to get functional pretty soon, enough to work. I hear a lot of different recovery time frames for people, some a couple of weeks, some a few months, have read reports of years but sure hope these are the minority. My biggest problems now relate to feeling out of it, dizzy in public, and muscle tension. Have not panicked in while. Sleep is good.

     
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