It seems appropriate that as I am having what I call an "anxiety attack" right now. I do not fear death - I fear anxiety attacks. I know, it is a loop of sorts.
What I experience during an attack is:
1) I can not get enough oxygen into my lungs. They are partially blocked and the air that enters is of poor quality. Of course, I know this isn't real. But it does exactly what I'm afraid it will do - create that sensation.
2) I feel that sense of falling that you get on a carnival ride when you drop suddenly toward the earth. It's what I think I would feel if I fell off a 50 story building as I was on my way down. Obviously, I'm not falling as I write this but the sensation is there.
3) I feel a lump in my throat that makes it hard for me to swallow naturally. I'm not sure if this is real or not real.
For years I suffered horribly because I refused to take Xanax because "it made me sleepy" and then I was afraid I would have to have mty panic attack while I was groggy but couldn't fall asleep.
Then a Doctor gave me a sample pack of Paxil (or some similar SSRI) and my attacks got worse. So I stopped taking the SSRI and this thrw me into a panic attack that went on for weeks.
Eventually, I found ways to reduce these events. I also found ways to halt them. This is one of them. Communicating.
I take .66 mg. of alprazolam every night whether I need it or not. I will only take another one if I have a serious attack. I also take a non-prescription medicine called Rescue Pearls which may or may not be helpful. Maybe just a bit. Maybe I just imagine it helps. I have to try.
When I have a very severe attack, I find it helps me to talk to someone. However, most hotlines are primarily ***** lines and I can't bear the thought that I'm taking up ***** when someone else might need the counselor more than I do, so I call rarely and only for a few minutes. Today, I researched for an online alternative and this is the first and only one that I felt I had good luck with.
So, here I am. Doing better and got post number one out of the way. Two to go.