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Author Topic: Panic/Anxiety is making me afraid to attend class or drive anywhere  (Read 185 times)

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Offline calm81

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Hey everyone,

My life is falling apart. Last year I was seeing a psychiatrist that seemed more interested in peddling his new ssri drug samples then to help me. He put me on Pristiq, prozac, and vibryd. I told him I wasn't depressed and that I suffered from panic attacks and anxiety filled throughout the day. He said that depression is what is causing the anxiety--maybe he's right. Either way the meds made me feel worst and changed my personality for the worse--so I stopped.

I've been off the meds for I believe 4 months now and I was doing fine with only a few episodes here and there, until last week it came back with a vengeance. One episode got so bad that a family member called 911, I would have never agreed to that because it's taking emergency help from someone who really needs it, because as soon as they got to my home it started to come down and the said my blood pressure was really high--brought on from the panic.

I just moved and don't have the same doctor and haven't even looked into one yet. I'm just afraid they will just start prescribing the anti-depressants again. I'm sick and tired of feeling this pending doom, in the car it's the worst, I'm strapped in my seatbelt and can't just abandon my car to "walk it off," and look like a mad lady on freeway. I've stopped drinking most caffeine, I used to love my morning coffee and daily sugar-free redbull--can't have anymore.
I've stopped my daily mile runs in fear of raising my heart rate because I can't separate fast heart rate brought on by normal exercise verse a panic attack coming. I went and bought some stress B-Complex that the local pharmacist recommended to me and had one yesterday but started to panic that the vitamin would bring a stimulant effect. I'm LOSING MY MIND--FREAKED ABOUT A VITAMIN??? SOMETHING NATURAL? :(
I had the flu last week and was afraid to take any medicine, everything scares me. I won't eat chocolate in fear of the sugar rush, adrenaline scares me so bad now. I used to love the adrenaline feeling, I could move mountains--now it freaks me out. Sorry this is sooo long.

Even the hunger feeling in my tummy freaks me out, because of that chest fluttering feeling it gives that is slightly the same as the one I get with my attacks. At this rate I'm going to be fat from not exercising and eating too much to avoid the hungry feeling--being fat will bring even more anxiety because I can't allow myself to be fat--ever!
I'm so miserable and the people around me will eventually lose patience with me. :( HELP. Any advice would be helpful and appreciated, natural remedies? Ways to calm down? I dunno, something.
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Offline carolina girl

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Re: Panic/Anxiety is making me afraid to attend class or drive anywhere
« Reply #1 on: June 20, 2014, 11:51:22 AM »
This is like reading something I could have written myself. Currently I'm too afraid to drive, I can't go to work, can't go to the store. I too was whisked off to the er in ambulance. Hooe you find some help soon!
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Online e77

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Re: Panic/Anxiety is making me afraid to attend class or drive anywhere
« Reply #2 on: June 20, 2014, 07:25:21 PM »
Are you seeing a therapist?  Someone who is willing to work with you with cognitive behavioral techniques, relaxation and acceptance strategies and countering fear with reason.  It may help.  I really like Claire Weekes books and CD Passing Through Panic.  She was a doctor who also struggled with panic and anxiety.  I listen to her on my walks and in my car when I fear my body sensations and get feelings of doom and gloom.  Many days her talks have helped me to continue my walks and calmed me down while driving. Sounds wise to lay off the stimulants for now.  Keep your hope alive.  Research and find techniques to manage the fears and practice.  Anxietyzone has many posts with great ideas.  Gently at first.  One step at a time.  Take care   
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Online Never-Quit

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« Reply #3 on: June 20, 2014, 08:20:36 PM »
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Never, never, never give up. -Winston Churchill

“You can’t live a perfect day without doing something for someone who will never be able to repay you."   ~ John Wooden

Online Never-Quit

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Re: Panic/Anxiety is making me afraid to attend class or drive anywhere
« Reply #4 on: June 23, 2014, 06:39:02 PM »
Hi Calm81,

I am shocked - this is my story when I first had my Panic Disorder - Wow!!!

Now that I am out that terrible darkness I can only describe as  "Hell on Earth" - which is now known and has been classified by the medical community as Panic Disorder !!!  -
                                                                   DSM Diagnostic Codes for Anxiety Disorders
                                                                                      300.21 - Panic Disorder With Agoraphobia
                                                                                      300.22 - Agoraphobia Without History of Panic Disorder
                                                                                      300.01 - Panic Disorder Without Agoraphobia

IMO - From reading your story, and having to call 911 are all the hallmark features of PANIC DISORDER not Anxiety Disorder (which is much milder and can be more readily controlled)

I also noticed, that the Anxiety Zone has a very informative and self-test quiz for Panic Disorder - http://www.anxietyzone.com/NIMHpanic.pdf


Here is what I wish someone would have told me... way back in the late 80's and early 90's.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

From my own experience and my discussions with my  doctors - they advised me that for treating Panic Disorder  - the Panic Attacks must first be HALTED and controlled, my doctor recommended "Combination Medication Therapy"

My doctor explained to me that "Combination Medication Therapy" would accomplish the following:

1.   My doctor used both an Antidepressant/SSRI and a low dose of Benzodiazepine - which really helped me immensely.

2.   My doctor explained that the Antidepressants will take up to 4 to 6 weeks to begin relieving anxiety symptoms and in some people if used alone - it can actually increase anxiety initially during the first few weeks  (as It did with me…) .  Which is one reason I had such a hard time staying on antidepressant.

3.   My doctor, further explained to me that the benzodiazepines are fast acting anxiety blockers (bringing me relief within 30-60 minutes) to stop my Panic Attacks caused by a Panic Disorder, and could also  help shield me from additional anxiety that may initially arise from the SSRI or Antidepressant that I was taking (Prozac) .

My two cents  :twocents:

I had a couple of doctors who would not prescribe me a benzodiazepine  - but, once I made an appoint with a Psychiatrist they were more than happy to give me the correct medications to help my Panic Disorder. :yes:


Combination Medication Therapy -

The strategy is to hold the individual on low-dose benzodiazepines (e.g., alprazolam 0.25 to 0.5 mg tid or qid plus antidepressant) for four to eight weeks. When the patient's panic has abated and antidepressant levels are adequate, the benzodiazepine can be slowly withdrawn.


Hope this helps,

Feel free to send me a PM if you have any questions or need help  :action-smiley-065:
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Never, never, never give up. -Winston Churchill

“You can’t live a perfect day without doing something for someone who will never be able to repay you."   ~ John Wooden

Offline Rhiannon

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Re: Panic/Anxiety is making me afraid to attend class or drive anywhere
« Reply #5 on: June 24, 2014, 01:55:16 AM »
I'm so sorry you are feeling so anxious. I hope you soon feel better and you find something that works for you. I am no expert in any way, but I have an opinion and I'm going to share if you don't mind. I personally don't believe in medicine, not because of anxiety towards them, but I am a firm believer of that phrase "let food be thy medicine". I think dropping red bull is a very smart move, and since the feeling of being hungry makes you anxious itself, I think the best option would be to eat more fruits and vegetables as you can have more of them and feel full without any guilt of gaining weight. Whole foods, high carb and low fat, is a very healthy lifestyle and known to help in making you feel better in general. I personally eat a lot of bananas when I feel stressed and it helps, but I have to make sure not to eat too much fat (I actually avoid oil or fatty things completely, especially the days I am anxious). I'm sorry if this sounds like some diet commercial, this is just my personal experience. I have bad episodes of depression and anxiety as well, sometimes don't see the light of day for days because of feeling anxious like there's something heavy sitting on my chest. I also think seeing someone holistic, who is more independent and doesn't want to make money out of you, could help.
I hope you can find something to help you take things easier. This all sounds very hard on you. Big hug
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Offline Knickers

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Re: Panic/Anxiety is making me afraid to attend class or drive anywhere
« Reply #6 on: June 25, 2014, 12:17:48 AM »
we all have been there , its not easy. driving can be esp scary . but you will get thru it!
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Offline calm81

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Re: Panic/Anxiety is making me afraid to attend class or drive anywhere
« Reply #7 on: June 25, 2014, 09:17:53 AM »
Wow! Just great responses, thank you!! I'm actually reading the comments after a panic episode. What I did to relieve the panic attack was to vacuum. Something about the loud noise blocking out my irrational/racing thoughts and expending the adrenaline helped to calm it down a little.

All your tips I will gladly try, accept the anti-depressant route. Been there. I think therapy might be a good approach, I need to find out why these come out of no where. I was reading a nice book when it came on this morning, what? I'm too young to have a heart attack, I should know that It's "just a panic attack," but I can't help feeling, "Maybe I'm the first young person to have a heart attack," you know? TMI ALERT: I'm even afraid to use the bathroom because my heart races during the *eh hem* pushing phase.  :angel-smiley-006: Again, thank you all so much. :action-smiley-065:
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