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Author Topic: Does anyone else have really long panic attacks?  (Read 6898 times)

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Offline anxiousamaryllis

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Does anyone else have really long panic attacks?
« on: June 23, 2009, 02:00:28 AM »
Hi everyone,

I was curious how long people's panic attacks typically last. Lately it seems my attacks are getting longer and longer. And that is scary! Most of the literature I've read about panic attacks say they typically peak within 10 minutes or so. In the past month I've had 2 panic attacks which went on much, much longer than that. The last one I had lasted hours. And I felt terrible all day and kept having sort of "after-shocks", where I'd get these big waves of panic rising up and flooding me again, but only for a short time, compared with the initial attack.

Does anyone else have long panic attacks? Hours or more? I kept thinking the worst was over, but then I'd get hit with another wave. My body was really, really freaking out on me. Of course my mind was too, but the physical symptoms I was having were almost unbearable. This last panic attack I had was the worst I have ever experienced in terms of intensity and the length of time it lasted. It took me several days to get over it.

Thanks for listening.

Anxious
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Offline abeja_reina_1989

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Re: Does anyone else have really long panic attacks?
« Reply #1 on: June 23, 2009, 03:26:54 AM »
I've heard that same, that panic attacks typically peak at like 10 mins, but I've had them seem to last an entire day. However, looking back, I realize that there were many panic attacks that day, which in my mind, made me feel like it lasted all day. I'm curious, what are your panic attacks like? Is it the same intensity for the hour(s), or does it tend to peak, then get calmer over and over. I'm not sure, but I don't think our bodies can handle intensity for that long of a time.. so I have a feeling, you may be experiencing them the way that I was
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Offline marijanedoe

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Re: Does anyone else have really long panic attacks?
« Reply #2 on: June 23, 2009, 11:08:27 AM »
when i have a sudden one due to outside stressors it lasts maybe 20 - 30 min
but when it's due to panic because of loss of control of my feelings and thoughts it could last 6-10 hours.
when that happens, i will have high and low moments allthough.
lisa
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Offline anxiousamaryllis

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Re: Does anyone else have really long panic attacks?
« Reply #3 on: June 23, 2009, 02:20:19 PM »
Thanks for your responses!

I guess it would be true to say that, while I'm having a "really long" panic attack, the intensity isn't the same the entire time. But, on a scale of 1 - 10, it stays at about an 8 with frequent peaks to level 10 and above! So it definitely feels like it's a continuous panic attack.

My body has a REALLY strong physiological response. I can almost feel the adrenaline and cortisol and whatever else coursing through me. I start shaking and I feel really weak, my legs feel like jelly and I get lightheaded. My breathing gets really weird and I start feeling nauseous and get a really dry mouth and can't swallow properly. Then my thoughts kick in and I start feeling really terrified. Like just total and utter TERROR. I feel paralyzed, but I also feel very agitated. I feel extremely trapped in my own body and have strong feelings of claustrophobia. At some point I usually end up having feelings of unreality. Throughout I have a sense of terrible doom and, in particular, I feel as if I am about to drop dead at any moment. Fun....! NOT!!!  :sick0002:

Typically I will try and lay down in bed, but that often makes it worse. After a while, I'm usually able to be still, but then I keep getting waves of panicky feelings and thoughts. Even after the worst is over, I generally feel really ill for the rest of the day, or more.

Luckily, I don't have panic attacks like that every day!! I have had two panic attacks like that in the past month. Inbetween I've had the milder, quicker variety.

Thanks for sharing.

Anxious
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Offline abeja_reina_1989

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Re: Does anyone else have really long panic attacks?
« Reply #4 on: June 23, 2009, 07:52:18 PM »
Everything you've mentioned sounds completely normal to me. I know it's tough when you start to get scared. I've found that just riding it out and letting it take its course is the best way. It's hard, but just think to yourself 'it's ok I'm feeling this way' and 'i can get through this'. I find it makes mine a lot shorter. Taking a nap helps me a lot too.. if I just can't take it at the time.. because it can get very exhausted. Writing also helps me quite a bit.

Hope that helps!! Take care
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Offline anxiousamaryllis

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Re: Does anyone else have really long panic attacks?
« Reply #5 on: June 24, 2009, 12:47:10 AM »
((((((((abeja))))))) What you say does help me a lot. THANK YOU very much for your support. I completely agree that trying to ride it out while repeating calming phrases to myself is the best course of action. I do try and do that, but sometimes the body symptoms are soooooo bad that it's really hard not to react to them with terror. But I can try and react to them LESS. THANK YOU (((((((abeja))))))

Anxious
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Offline atvsamala

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Re: Does anyone else have really long panic attacks?
« Reply #6 on: June 24, 2009, 05:31:27 AM »
Hi Anxious,

When you look at references, they indeed say that panic attacks only last for minutes but in 2006, when I first had panic attacks, I experienced them more than just a few minutes.  I remembered being with my parents while I was in the church and then, suddenly, I was having a full-blown panic attack.  I felt my whole body was shaking and I would just look down and hoped that it would just go away.  For an hour, I was feeling this way and my hallucinations back then intensified the experience more so as I perceived that the people in church who I didn't even know personally were saying mean things about me.

But then, after a few months, I realized that there's no reason for me to get panicky about being out of the house.  Also, I learned to understand that my hallucinations weren't real and that they are caused by a malfunction in my perception and cognition.  Due to this realization, slowly, I was able to overcome
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Offline atvsamala

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Re: Does anyone else have really long panic attacks?
« Reply #7 on: June 24, 2009, 05:39:02 AM »
Hi Anxious,

Sorry, I wasn't able to finish my post earlier.  Anyway, I was able to overcome panic attacks as well as my hallucinations and right now, I'm able to function normally and even enjoy working.

I do hope that what I shared with you would be able to help you overcome your panic attacks and live life normally.

Regards,
atvsamala
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Offline joiejoie

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Re: Does anyone else have really long panic attacks?
« Reply #8 on: June 24, 2009, 06:24:43 AM »
Amen Sgates!!!!

I am so happy that you shared that! that was awesome! I feel the same way! I have been dealing with anxiety most of my life and I have finally been praying to God for help! Finally I am able to deal with it.  I haven't had a panic attack in a month! And to be honest I don't care if I do.  I just know that I am where God wants me at all times.  I finally have some peace about it.  The more I know God the happier I feel.  I am so comforted to know that He is my Father.  God has a purpose for everything.  Maybe there is a purpose for anxiety.  God is guiding me and directing me and I feel like having anxiety has allowed me to be able to help others or at least I am able to relate to others with the same problem.  God is amazing and is so faithful!

"But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace to me was not without effect.  No, I worked harder than all of them - yet not I, but the grace of God that was with me." 1 Corinthians 15:10

"But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.  Therefore, my dear brothers, stand firm. Let nothing move you.  Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain."
1 Corinthians 15:57-58
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Offline hanso1

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Re: Does anyone else have really long panic attacks?
« Reply #9 on: June 24, 2009, 09:01:32 AM »
Yes!!!
My major attacks lasted for hours.
I think partially b/c I was panicking about the panic attacks and was trying to figure out what all this was.
But the one that sent me to the ER lasted a good month and a half, to varying degrees.
After that last one my adrenaline was stuck going full blast and I seemed to lose all ability to calm myself down.
Thank you ativan and lexapro!
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Offline anxiousamaryllis

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Re: Does anyone else have really long panic attacks?
« Reply #10 on: June 24, 2009, 12:29:27 PM »
Thanks guys, it's good to know I'm not the only one who gets panic attacks that last longer than a few mintues (though, obviously, I don't wish this on anyone!!)

Anxious
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Offline anxiousamaryllis

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Re: Does anyone else have really long panic attacks?
« Reply #11 on: June 27, 2009, 12:30:31 PM »
Thanks AnxiousOne,

I do try and meditate every day, but it's hard for me to do it while I'm having an actual panic attack. I try and do it at a time when I'm not super-anxious, and my hope is that this practice will gradually make me less anxious overall, and therefore, less susceptible to panic attacks. It's hard though!!! I'm sorry you experience panic attacks too. But it's great that the deep breathing and meditation is helping you!

Thanks for your response!

Best,

Anxious
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Offline hanso1

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Re: Does anyone else have really long panic attacks?
« Reply #12 on: June 29, 2009, 09:45:35 AM »
allangering- Sorry you went thru all that!
How can you tell the diff between a seizure and panic?
Why didn't the DRs realize you were having seizures sooner?
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Offline Knightsaber

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Re: Does anyone else have really long panic attacks?
« Reply #13 on: June 29, 2009, 06:50:56 PM »
Mine are usually short, 2 or 3 minutes.  At worst 10. 

The ones I get once or twice a year that I call the Big Ones can go for six hours at a time.  Really miserable six hours.  Occasionally I will cave in on those and go to the ER to get an Ativan shot.  Six hours is just too long.
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Offline leobaby

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Re: Does anyone else have really long panic attacks?
« Reply #14 on: July 04, 2009, 01:44:43 AM »
my panic attacks can last from 5 minutes to 5 hours.
once, i had anxiety that lasted all day 
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