Friday, April 3, 2009

Painting My Picture Of Panic Attacks

I just wanted to Thank all of you who visited my post about not feeling well. It is hard for me to explain these attacks, but I found good old" Wikipedia" describe it pretty well. If you are interested in what they have to say about it click here. I also went on Web MD's site and did not care for their explanation as well as Wikipedia's. I was surprised to see how many different sites there were about panic attacks. Some even listed them as a "common" ailment. I personally feel I fit into the category of them being inherited. My Dad's side of the family had many different forms of anxiety and fears. I first experienced them in 7th grade when I had to get up and give a history report in front of the class. Something like stage fright. In 1963 when this happened, I didn't know who to tell, or how to get help, so I tried to just avoid any situation that I thought would cause this attack to happen again. Then in the mid 80's they became pretty severe and I went to the Dr. and got no where as far as getting help. I went to several doctors and only got beta blockers to try and prevent them from happening. I took them for awhile but found they left me feeling having no feelings at all. If you have ever taken any medications, you know that most come with some kind of side effect. I educated myself the best I could and found that meditation and deep breathing and creative visualization were the best things for me. I think I have been maybe a little bit too busy lately and haven't been keeping my thoughts positive...and the attacks came back like an unexpected tornado. I was at a family function this past Sunday and had a few attacks and my mind just went blank. I couldn't think of how to do the most basic things, like cut a square of fabric. It is extremely embarrassing to have these in front of people, and them not having any idea what is wrong with you. Rather than just tell people "Hey, I am having a panic attack", I just try my best to cope with the situation and not bother anyone. When I had these in the 80's, I would be at a grocery store and be in the check out lane and this overwhelming fear came over me to leave immediately. I left my groceries in the cart and went home. Now I know a little more about them, and know that if I just wait for a little while, the feelings of extreme fear will settle down and I don't have to leave to get relief. I also, feel a little better knowing that these days no one will lock me in a looney bin for having these. I think years ago, that was a big fear of mine. I thought I was the only one who had these. Now I know I am not alone. Thanks you all very much for your kind words. I will continue on with some creative blogging again soon.


Gramma Ann said...

Thank you for that explanation of "Panic Attacks" I have a phobia of snakes, so this is the closest I can relate to a panic attack. We visited the zoo a few years back and going through the snake part, even through the snakes were behind glass, I begin to imagine that one may have gotten out, and was crawling around at my feet, I couldn't wait to get out of there. I told my husband, I have to get out of here, right now! Another time about 5 years ago we were visiting the Holocaust Museum in Washington D.C. and it got to depressing for me and I told my Granddaughter Renee, you have to get me out of here right now, I can't take this any longer, so while the rest of the family continued on the tour, Renee took me to the lobby to wait and stayed with me. So, I don't think those were true Panic attacks, it is as close as I can get to imagining just a little bit of what you go through.

I hope you are feeling better and have a lovely week-end.


MYRA said...

Well, you take care and think of all those positive thoughts, and meditate till the cows come home... If this usually works for you, I'm sure you will be feeling better soon...

flydragon said...

Hi Brenda,
I clicked on your link to Wikipedia and can certainly understand how scary these must be for you. You also seem to have a good grasp of them and how to settle them down a bit. Take care of yourself and hopefully things will be back to "normal" soon.

Betty Flocken said...

Hey Brenda! I'm glad to see you again. That would be awful to have those, not knowing what they are and afraid to tell anyone. I had a grocery store moment in the late 70's.. Never forgot it. Be well

Renie Burghardt said...

Hi Brenda,

Sounds like you're working your way through them, now, which is certainly a good thing. Mine relate to my childhood and war and stuff. I can't tolerate anxiety well, and I have a hard time breathing during a panic attack. I have learned to breathe into a paper bag to ease the situation.

Keep relaxing with crative thinking, knitting, drawing, all the things you enjoy, and they will help relax you and get your mind of the negative.

Hope you feel better soon!



Sandy said...

Ohhh I had these after my mom died, out of the blue, like four months later. I was in a grocery store line and felt something hit me with all the symptoms you described. They happened a few more times after that, but I did the meditation, etc. thing.

Sure hope they disappear soon.

Rudee said...

I know exactly how this feels, but mine occur under only one circumstance-when I'm driving on a bridge that goes up at an angle. At the point where I can't see the other side of the bridge, my hands sweat, my heart races, and I get tunnel vision. The first time this happened, I thought I was going to die driving on that bridge. Flat bridges don't do this to me. I used to have a recurring dream that I would fly off a freeway ramp and land in the Wonder Bread factory. I'd wake up in a state of panic. I so get how you're feeling, and you're right to take a step back to the things that help you cope. I hope you're on the mend.

Delphine said...

Hi brenda, dropped in to see how you were and was pleased to see that you were getting it out of your system and onto paper- that is good. They are the pits aren't they! But you can beat them into submission by refusing to let them change your life. You have already started by not running away from them but by facing them out! Well done! You are not alone out there!

Winifred said...

I must have missed your earlier posting. Glad you are feeling a bit better. My friend had panic attacks years ago but never really coped with them. Her doctor prescribed drugs but it didn't really help sadly.

It's good that you have found a way of coping with them. Having that knowledge about them and the causes has probably helped too. Take care Brenda.

Patty said...

I hope you are coping well now. I can only imagine they must be horrible.

I to never liked to have to stand in front of the class and read something, maybe I was having them and didn't know it. My heart would pound so bad, I couldn't even hear myself talking, and my head would be thumping, and my forehead would be sweating.

Have a relaxing week-end, at least what's left of it.

George said...

Excellent post,

Panic attacks can be prevented in numerous ways and it is always handy if you know your own symptoms. As a start you should take deep breaths. Such relaxation techniques always help especially in cases of panic attacks. Remember that there is no quick cure for a disease like this. Any sort of therapy takes time. Do not be over critical of yourselves. You must learn to calm down your anxiety and meditation is a good way of reducing stress. You should avoid stimulants like nicotine and caffeine as this can increase your anxiety. Remember that panic attacks can always be harmful if one does not take care of it. These tips are useful in taking care of yourself and preparing yourself for any future attacks. Remember that you are the key and it is you who can take care of these attacks.

Clifford 1994 to 2009

Clifford   1994 to 2009
The Best Dog Ever