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This may not work for everyone, but for what it's worth....
how to cope with panic attacks. This is only a temporary solution.
Because my experience personally, and professionally, of panic attacks is that they are often about constantly repressed negative emotions. When a real threat appears, we can no longer manage those emotions and we panic.
Processing the origins of this usually works if you're committed and I've had great success, as many therapists have, with helping people with anxiety states.
Meanwhile, a bit about my story.
When I was 16, my father became ill with lung cancer. Now, like in many families, because I don't want to go to a blame-y place with my Mum, people for whatever reason find the expression of strong, negative emotions really uncomfortable, so children will get shut down pretty fast.
We were not allowed to be angry, sad or anxious. Everything had to be 'fine' all the time.
When my father went into hospital I did not react much. But part of me knew this was very serious.
I was at school one day shortly afterwards when I was overcome with panic. I was on a landing in the main school staircase. I fainted and was carted off to the 'medical room' to recover.
Visiting my father in hospital was horrible. Worse, he was sent home in the final stage of his illness for a while before being readmitted in his final months. He was terribly thin and ill, and laid in bed all day, coughing.
Nobody discussed with me how I was reacting to any of this. Not my relatives, not my friends, nobody at school. Obviously my mother was dealing with this her own way, but she kind of sidelined us, because I guess it was just too much for her.
From the time of his death onwards, I felt nothing. I'd been well trained to simply not just push down feelings, but not to have any in the first place.
But I started to have 'hospital-phobia'. This went on right into my 20s. On one occasion, I had to go and interview a woman who had given birth to sextuplets, it was a big national story. She was in St George's Hospital, Tooting. I drove to the car park, got out of the car, looked at the hospital, got back into the car and fainted.
But I had a job to do, so, I came to, and white as a sheet and shaky I managed to make it to the maternity unit and interview her.
When I was in my late 20s I was wrongly medicated for a back strain with 'muscle relaxants', these were actually benzodiazepines, - things like Valium, Lorazepam, Diazepam - I quickly became addicted. It wasn't that I wanted or liked them, but every time I tried to stop taking them, I had awful panic attacks, of course. This made it all worse, because now I had re programmed my brain to experience chemical calming and without it, anxiety, which was usually baseless, came up. Dorris Wedding wedding wearings With Lace Appliques
I was rescued by discovering I was pregnant with my first child, threw them down the loo, and had a two week cold turkey which I have to say is the most difficult thing I've ever done. But I was working as a News Editor on a nursing journal and I knew they might affect the baby so I did it.
After that, up until probably only about 10 years ago, I had hospital-phobia, which extended to not so much fear of needles, but hating to see my own blood and being very anxious in hospital environments. I've never been able to give blood donations as a result, which is a shame.
My panic attacks start with my limbs feeling out of control, a feeling of impending doom, and of losing control, I don't get the palpitations and breathing issues so much. We're all different of course.
I have figured this out now, because I'm a therapist, which is very fortunate. I have learned to notice my feelings, express them, in a healthy way, and act on them.
But I found out by accident how to manage them when once, when having a blood test, I told the nurse I felt faint and she did something brilliant. She got me a small cup of iced water and made me drink it. It literally took the panic away.
After that, every time I started to feel faint I did the same thing.
This totally worked. I believe this is because for a start it's a distraction, both for your conscious attention and your body which now has a new job - the act of sipping cold water.
Fainting is the body's way of withdrawing all your blood supply to vital organs so it tends to affect the brain and you faint from reduced blood supply, or so I understand.
The process of acquiring, or asking for a glass of very cold water distracts you, and your body, which now has some new tasks, to receive the signals that you are putting cold water into your body, even holding the glass and focusing on drinking.
It's worked every time for me.
Have a nice day, fellow sufferers. XXXXXXXXXXXX