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  • New panicker here. Anyone only panic at night???

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    Old 10-22-2005, 10:37 PM   #1
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    Unhappy New panicker here. Anyone only panic at night???

    I'm 33. I have 4 kids, 8, 6.5, 3.5, and 17 mos. No medical history at all--certainly no prior problems with anxiety or panicking.

    I was diagnosed with pericarditis in the ER on Oct. 4th. I'd been having chest pain for about a week. It kept getting worse, then I started with other symptoms....shortness of breath, dizzyness, and then I had numbness in my arms.

    So I thought I was dying.

    They diagnosed the pericarditis and gave me Alprazolam in the hospital ER. They recognized and I realized I was having panic attacks in addition to my heart situation. I of course was panicky in the ER, nearly passed out a few times. I kept setting off their O2 saturation and heart monitor alarm, which ended up freaking me out more.....I was given Lorazepam Rx for home. It was basically useless. I ended up having like 3 more big panic attacks even when I took the medication when I felt the panic coming on.

    My situation is I only have these attacks in the evening (with the exception of that ER visit). I feel it as I begin to unwind and especially stretch out on the couch. The shortness of breath creeps heart flutters. Then I've been taking medication and I delay going to bed since I know what will happen. As soon as I have to lie completely prone and turn off the light, I freak out. I end up having to sit straight up or even get up and walk around. I cannot lay down. One night, when I had not taken Lorazepam before I went to bed, I sat bolt upright out of dead sleep and had the worst panic attack I've experience thus far.

    I went to my PCP on Wednesday. He gave me Alprazolam instead. It's only been 3 days, but so far no big panic attacks. He thinks once my pericarditis is totally resolved, the panic attacks that came completely out of the blue will cease. I'm supposed to check back in with him in 2 more weeks. If that is not the case, he said we'd discuss a longer term solution of a "serotonin-raising" type of medication. He didn't name one specifically.

    I saw the cardiologist yesterday for my follow up. They told me to stop the naproxen (to shrink the pericardium) and basically said I'm all better. They said if it comes back, they'll have to refer me to a rheumatologist (since reoccuring pericarditis could be attributed to a autoimmnue disorder)

    So today I went without the Naproxen. Lo and behold, this evening my chest began to hurt a little. I've certainly felt the beginnings of a panic attack coming on--took the I'm stalling going to bed. I'm afraid it will happen again.

    Hope to hear any words of experience.

    Last edited by ArizonaAmy; 10-22-2005 at 10:39 PM.

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    Old 10-23-2005, 09:27 AM   #2
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    Re: New panicker here. Anyone only panic at night???

    My attacks are only at night as well. I dont know if it is because you are slowing down from the day and your body is in a resting state. You are not alone plenty of people here have them more at night! Just remember you cant die from a panick attack! Hopefully yours will get better.
    Godd Luck!!

    Old 10-23-2005, 04:37 PM   #3
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    Re: New panicker here. Anyone only panic at night???

    I don't have panick attacks anymore, basically because I've trained myself not to... but when i did have them I had them more frequently at night. I don't know what it is but I still get all depressed and anxious at night once in a while.. I gave it the name "sundowning." It's normal... Just say to yourself, "it's ok, I'm just sundowning." I know it's the worst to try and sleep during this but take a tranq and try meditating.. I always felt refreshed in the morning.

    Oh and one time i woke up and thought i was dead in the middle of the night, it was the worst feeling ever... so panic attacks when you're sleeping = not cool.

    Old 10-24-2005, 07:33 AM   #4
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    Re: New panicker here. Anyone only panic at night???

    to arizona
    the alprazolam and lorazepam are both valium type meds and will calm you and reduce or stop panic attacks if you get the dose right, this takes some experimenting with docs permission of course
    1 or more tablets disolved under the tongue will usually stop any panic attack quickly

    panic attacks often cause heart attack like symptoms

    L lasts longer than A and a dose of L before bed may help a lot
    when anxious or panicky do try to relax and dont tense up or fight back, breathe deep and slow
    perhaps go to bed with light and radio on
    Life is not a dress rehearsal

    Old 10-24-2005, 09:09 PM   #5
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    Re: New panicker here. Anyone only panic at night???

    yeah, i sleep with the tv on every night, and if it gets real bad, i sleep with my mom and i swear i've only slept with her like three times this year haha. [why don't they have a blushing face on here].. oh god, i'm a huge geek, twenty and sleeping with my mom when i'm scared...sigh.

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