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Another panic attack

cheer_mom

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I had a really bad panic attack yesterday, then had another one this morning. I'm scared. I take Zoloft daily and have ativan. Wondering if I need to adjust something. Anyone else have these and if so, what helped you the most? I am in therapy as well.
 

bin_tenn

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Hi there. Sorry you're experiencing panic attacks, I know how awful they can feel. :( Did you take Ativan when your panic started? As for Zoloft (or any other daily med) it may work well, but unfortunately it doesn't mean you'll be immune to panic attacks. Have you addressed panic attacks specifically in therapy?

I don't get panic attacks like I used to, though I still experience mild ones occasionally. What really helped me is learning to identify the very early signs, so I can take corrective action as soon as possible. It took a couple of therapy sessions for my therapist to help me discover what those early warning signs are, but now that I know, I can take steps to mitigate the attack and reduce the severity. The earlier, the better!
 

cheer_mom

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Yes, I took it as soon as I got the anxious feeling. I know what triggered mine. It was another death in our family. My father passed in February and since then we have had about 4 more deaths of close friends or family pass away. As soon as I hear about it, my emotions go crazy and I just can't seem.to get ahold of them before I.am in a full blown panic. Then the ugly thoughts come in, who's next? Anxiety is such a horrible thing. I am thankful for my therapist though. He has been a Godsend for me.
 

bin_tenn

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I'm sorry to hear that. :( I've definitely been there before. At this point I think it'd be worth looking closely for the earliest warning signs. I told my therapist my panic attacks come out of the blue. One minute I'm fine, and then suddenly I'm in a full blown panic and feeling terrible. She kind of chuckled and said "that's not how it works." And after telling her the events that lead up to a few major attacks, she helped me realize the earliest signs.

I didn't realize I was having early signs, because they seemed entirely unrelated. I would feel the need to be around people, because "if something happens to me, I'd be okay knowing I'm around people who can help immediately." I'd also start yawning a lot. My mind would start wandering, I'd start feeling a bit anxious in general, etc.

One trick that helped me, learned from my therapist, is making my face very cold. Stick your face in a bowl of cold water, put an ice pack on your face and move it around, etc. The sudden cold triggers a natural response in the body which resets the parasympathetic nervous system, which slows heart rate, breathing, etc.
 

cheer_mom

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I will definitely try the ice on my face. Thank you. I will try to pay attention the my triggers and see what they are.
 

bin_tenn

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Identifying triggers as well as early signs is very useful and important, IMO. The earlier you can act, the better you'll likely be in the long run.
 

cheer_mom

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So, I had an appointment today with an orthopedic due to recurrent shoulder pain. I have bursitis. This can cause chest pain as well. So, all the pain in my chest is from the shoulder. That makes me feel a little better. Just knowing it isn't heart related and it is real gives me a sense of relief.
 

bin_tenn

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So, I had an appointment today with an orthopedic due to recurrent shoulder pain. I have bursitis. This can cause chest pain as well. So, all the pain in my chest is from the shoulder. That makes me feel a little better. Just knowing it isn't heart related and it is real gives me a sense of relief.
Glad you got some answers!
 

cheer_mom

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Me too! Now to just keep reminding myself what the doctors said.
 

bin_tenn

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That's the tricky part, huh? :) Definitely try to remember this any time the sensation happens and you feel anxious about it.
 
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