[QUOTE=Yog-Sothoth]Oh, gosh, I'm the same way. I'm 20 years old and since I was fifteen or sixteen, I've had panic attacks born from fear of heart attacks and dying. It's even bothering me right now (I was up all night tonight worrying and now I've gotta stay awake to help regain a proper sleep schedule). Usually I get a shortness of breath and pains in my chest and left arm or left elbow. It's really freaking me out, too. It helps knowing that other people experience this and they're ok, but then you always get that "What if," like "What if I'M not ok? What if I'M not imagining it?" Blech.
Oh, by the way, I'm glad things are going really well for you, too, t_panic. =D
Thank you! :)
That "what if" thinking will consume you & I know it's hard to get rid of but you can do it. Are you on any meds for your panic? A combo of meds & relaxation & breathing techniques has worked so well for me it's amazing!
Today, I decided to drive myself downtown again & didn't have any anxiety or panic AT ALL! It did cross my mind the whole what if thoughts but they were short.. I'd catch myself singing along with my music playing & enjoying the drive.. That's when i'd put myself into the panic check (am I feeling any numbness in my arms, is my heart beating normal, etc.. which usually leads me into a panic attack) but, everything was fine for once and the thoughts passed. I went shopping & bought some fabric for my mom, went to eat & drove home just fine. It was so great! I can't imagine how great I'm going to feel at the 4 to 6 weeks mark on these meds! Do you know the correct breathing technique? If not then let me know & I'll post it here tomorrow so, you can practice it. I had to try it a few times while not having panic attack to get it right but when I used it during panic attacks they went away in less than 30 seconds each time getting shorter and shorter! If you're not on a med such as an SSRI then from my personal experience with it, I highly recommend it. Not trying to push meds on anyone here.. This is just my personal experience with it. I tried to over come this for 2 years without antidepressants & just couldn't do it.. even with xanax... it was still there waiting for me when the xanax wore off & that made my fears grow more & more.. Now, on an SSRI less than 3 weeks & already doing things I couln't do before, like DRIVE.. At one point I was scared to walk away too far from the house for fear of passing out and no one finding me for days... But that's all over now. I decided today that I'm going to look for a job too & try to make some local friends again... Tomorrow, I'm off to get my hair done.. I'm getting to where I can't wait to get out of the house and LIVE! It's so crazy to me but great at the same time that I feel this way now. If I can do it then any of you can do it... Just be proactive in recovering from this. See your doctor and get the right meds for you & learn the breathing & relaxation techniques. Practice those techniques till you get them right so, you'll be prepared when panic comes on. Don't fight panic... let it in.. & then face it with all you've learned & practiced untill you get to where you can slow it down & make it go away faster. A cold wet wash cloth on the back of my neck & on my face & ice water helps me cool down when I get too hot with it.. I blow my nose to get my air ways all cleared out when I feel it coming too so, a clogged nose getting in the way of breathing is one less thing to deal with. Combine all these things and keep trying.. pretty soon you'll be kickin panics butt too! I've been eating a "balanced" diet since I started my meds too which I'm sure is also, helping. Getting my veggies, fruits, whole grains, lean protiens, dairy, etc.. Only having candy, cake & sodas once in a while. I've been drinking at least 34oz of water per day which is less than I should but more than I did before. The skin on my shins used to be all dried & flakey but it's even starting to get smoother (probably from the water)! I now walk at least 30 minutes with my dog 3 to 5 times per week too. All these small adjustments to your life can and do help a lot more than you would imagine. You just gotta stick with it and before you know it you'll start seeing & feeling results. If you ever feel like giving up just come to the boards... vent, read & try to find something to inspire you to keep you going.
Good luck to all!