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Panic Attack Treatment
January 18, 2011
7:36 pm
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Rhyannon
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Has anyone here had any counseling that helped them with panic attacks? I do not want to be on medication but I am not sure if counseling would help me or not. I had them years ago and they eventually went away and now they are starting to come back.

January 18, 2011
8:34 pm
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Tommy45
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I've had counseling for panic attacks, although I did combine it with medication. With or without medication, counseling is very helpful for this, as there are mental techniques you can learn to better handle your panic attacks.

January 19, 2011
1:59 pm
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freeme
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I too have had counseling for panic attacks.  I seem to be able to work through them now (have not had any major attack in years).  My therapist gave me some deep breathing exercises and other things to do when I feel an attack coming on.

January 19, 2011
7:35 pm
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Alise
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While I haven't dealt with this issue, my mother has. I'm not sure if she did counseling for it, but she did effect some diet changes that helped her some. I would think counseling would be helpful as well, as someone else said, due to the coping techniques that can be learned.

January 19, 2011
11:02 pm
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Loretta
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I prefer to stay away from medication.  Have you tried some kind of therapy or counseling that would help you to get to the root of what ultimately causes the panic attacks to happen?

January 20, 2011
3:24 pm
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Hepburn
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Hi everyone,

I've suffered from anxiety attacks since I was 8 (I'm 53 now). They would come and go over the years. Over the past 5 years these attacks have turned into a full blown phobia of driving the freeways. So I don't drive them anymore. It's a feeling of "losing control". All I have to do is THINK about driving on the freeway and my body goes into Emergency Mode.

I don't want to take any medication either. Never have. I haven't had therapy for it either. Just read a few books is all. I was thinking about Hypnosis. Has anyone ever tried that?

Hep

January 21, 2011
5:29 pm
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AnxietyRUs
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I have dealt with this for a long time. It is sort of embarrassing for a man to have them but I do. I take medication which make mine easier to deal with. I have been offered a therapy dog which is a great help but I was already being treated with medication which is working. If I relapse, I'm seriously thinking of getting a dog to alert me to my getting keyed up to have an attack.

January 22, 2011
10:45 am
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StronginHim77
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Hepburn, thanks for teaching me how to locate and access these new postings.  This Olde Lady is still learning her way around the new Site format.

Ah....Panic Attacks.  Yup.  I am well acquainted with the nastee critters.  Had my first panic attack after driving through/across/under the Chesapeake Bay (from Maryland shore to Virginia).  Being so helpless and out of control triggered my first lulu of a panic attack.  Of course, I had no idea what it was at the time.  Felt like a heart attack.  Had several "after-shock" attacks during the train trip home (from Virginia to Florida on AutoTrain)...again, a setting in which I felt out of control...TRAPPED.   All this at the age of 44.

Fast forward to age 53.  My late husband committed suicide.  BLAM.  Now the panic attacks show up in earnest, always at totally unpredictable moments.  (For reasons I did not understand at the time, they would usually slam into me during periods of napping or REST...settings in which I should have felt peaceful.)  I also found buildings with bright fluorescent lighting could trigger them, as well as certain foods (caffeine, alcohol, etc.).  And if I FEARED I was getting one because I FELT one of the all-too-familiar symptoms creeping up, my fear would keep the adrenaline skyrocketing throughout my body until the Real McCoy exploded. 

Thanks to some great books and two excellent doctors (a psychologist and a psychiatrist), I have learned a great deal about the cause(s), symptoms and management of these panic attacks.  I have also been diagnosed as having "Panic Disorder," something only a medical professional can do.  [Note: Never try to self-diagnose, as I once did.]

Let me share the two books which have proven MOST helpful to me: PANIC ATTACKS [WHAT THEY ARE; WHY THEY HAPPEN, WHAT YOU CAN DO ABOUT THEM] by Christine Ingham and THE ANXIETY & PHOBIA WORKBOOK by Edmund J. Bourne, Ph.D.  Both are currently in print.  PANIC ATTACKS is an extremely easy read.  From both I learned that (1)  panic attacks would not kill me; (2) panic attacks can be "managed" through a multi-level approach which can incorporate physical exercise, changes in diet, improved "self-talk," relaxation techniques, support medication (I opted for an "as needed" medication, rather than a daily, "maintenance" medication) and therapy to help me develop new ways of identifying & expressing my feelings and asserting myself.

I encourage each of you to explore every avenue of support for the understanding, management and elimination of these attacks.  They are so doggone unpleasant...frightening, in fact.  Knowledge of the buggers is essential for their reduction & elimination, so educate yourselves through books and professional support/treatment. 

At age 60, I still get hit with random attacks from time to time.  I have learned what works for me in controlling the attack: standing up & moving around, drinking water, carefully paying attention to my breathing (closing my mouth to prevent too much production of carbon dioxide which makes me feel dizzy),  talking soothingly to myself out loud & acknowleding the unpleasant physical sensations I am having, as well as their source (the unbalanced amount of adrenaline being released in my body by subconscious "fight or flight" response) and talking to another human being while I work through the onset of the attack.  When all else fails, I administer to myself (by doctor's Rx) 2.5 mg. of valium to reduce my blood pressure and help me return to normal levels of breathing, heart rate, etc.

Hoping this proves helpful to some of you...

Ma Strong

January 22, 2011
1:37 pm
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BabblingIdiot
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I am on xanax right now for panic attacks, but I know I really need to get started with some counseling for this. I believe I can pinpoint alot of the reasons I have so much anxiety.

January 23, 2011
9:42 am
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Hepburn
Los Angeles, California
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You're welcome Ma.

One book I've "skimmed" through is "Don't Panic , Taking Control of Anxiety Attacks" by R. Reid Wilson. I will check out the Anxiety and Phobia book.

AnxietyRUs, I've never heard of an "anxiety dog". How does that work? Sounds REALLY interesting. And since I'm an animal lover....

Babblingidiot (that name makes me laugh! Cause that's how I am most of the time! HA) I have xanax too but I rarely take it. Maybe at night if I can't sleep. Otherwise if I take it during the day I can't function, and with the kind of job I have I can't be half asleep. Doesn't it make you sleepy?

January 23, 2011
9:44 am
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Hepburn
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I meant "THERAPY dog" not "anxiety dog".

January 26, 2011
6:38 pm
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AnxietyRUs
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The dog is trained to recognize the signs that you are going into an attack. They will then demand attention and try to get you to play and hold them. I saw a couple of videos on YouTube about a girl who had a dog that was her therapy dog. I've also met someone at Wal-Mart (of all places) who has one and she said the dog was the best thing she had done. I have seriously thought of getting more information about getting one.

May 8, 2013
8:26 pm
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RehabForTeens
Orange, CA
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I stay away from medication whenever I have a anxiety attack..Exercising and practising yoga and meditation has helped me a lot ,along with counselling sessions..

December 5, 2013
5:58 am
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Edward Fruitman
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Thinking is believing, so if you think good, your fate will be good. Take balanced diet, and control your fears. Do not think about problems, think about ways to solve them because opposite side will always destroy your health. And the most important, if you find a psychiatrist for yourself, it will be the best way. http://trifectahealthnyc.com/ can be a good place to go forward for you.

June 10, 2014
9:22 pm
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GarrettHnatiuk
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It varies from person to person. There's medication to take care of this. Make sure you get yourself to a reputable mental health specialist so you can get these under control. Panic attacks are terrifying and there is no have to continue to endure them.

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