• Welcome! It’s great to see you.

    Our forum members are people, maybe like yourself, who experience mental health difficulties or who have had them at some point in their life.

    For more features and forums

Constant shortness of breath and panic

Antimatter

Antimatter

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 19, 2020
Messages
714
Location
UK
Seen a couple of people on here with this. I suffer every waking minute.

I literally manage every function and task in my day around preventing what feels like a minor heart attack.

Been suffering 30 years now with many side effects covered on the forums, agrophobia currently bad, can't go more than 100 metres from my house or car usually.

Alcohol is the only thing that gives me the freedom to even venture out for a slow walk.

Any type of exercise, standard portion of food, strong smells and feeling hot are nailed on triggers to induce gasping for air.....

Am terrified of trying any medications, feel like my daily balance is already a tightrope, anyone else suffer similar symptoms, and if so what meds or methods helped please?
 
R

RTLP

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 13, 2020
Messages
58
Location
London
I have issues with panic attacks but they are not as serious as yours. Would recommend seeing a specialist that you can trust and to start taking SSRI’s.
 
Antimatter

Antimatter

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 19, 2020
Messages
714
Location
UK
I got prescribed some, can't remember which. I had to stick my fingers down my throat within 10 mins to prevent a complete meltdown, sad really but terrifying all the same.

Had a specialist I trusted about 14 years ago, they told me exposure treatment was the only way forward. I have experienced alot and regard myself as strong, but that was, and still is just too big for me.

Since did a home study diploma, so I could rationalise the irrational, no use. Half-jokingly considered labotomising myself to shed all the suffering, not an actual option.

Considering hypnotherapy or meds again, just don't want to be like this for the next 30/40 years, have a young family now x
 
J

jamraspberry

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 11, 2020
Messages
230
Location
World
I have severe anxiety and panic everyday too. I feel like I have to have a phone near me to phone emergency services. I don't recommend phoning them unless it's appropriate. I usually phone a support helpline to explain my anxiety issue, not emergency services.

I was given fluoxetine but I had a bad reaction so I don't use it. I don't know much about other antidepressants but I'm sure there are forum members here who know a lot more than me.
 
Antimatter

Antimatter

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 19, 2020
Messages
714
Location
UK
I have severe anxiety and panic everyday too. I feel like I have to have a phone near me to phone emergency services. I don't recommend phoning them unless it's appropriate. I usually phone a support helpline to explain my anxiety issue, not emergency services.

I was given fluoxetine but I had a bad reaction so I don't use it. I don't know much about other antidepressants but I'm sure there are forum members here who know a lot more than me.
I carry a phone for the very same reason, my emergency services are 3-5 friends who can take a call.

Really appreciate the reply x
 
Mario82

Mario82

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 4, 2020
Messages
3,657
Location
UK
HI dude, just seen this. Have had anxiety in the past, but not as bad as yours appears to be. Always here to listen either on here or via PM again.
 
introverted_drummer

introverted_drummer

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 10, 2020
Messages
374
Location
Massachusetts, USA
I have anxiety most of the time too although it has gotten better over the past few years. Sometimes random things do trigger instant panic attacks for me though.
I'm really glad you have friends you can call if you're feeling anxious. I hope you can utilize them when you're struggling, although it can be easier said than done for me as well.
Feel free to reach out to people on here, including myself, if you need to talk about anything.
 
B

Black Despondency

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 29, 2020
Messages
196
Location
United states
When my anxiety gets really bad I usually stop breathing all together until it feels like I'm starting to suffocate. Sometimes a occurs, fight, flight or freeze in place response will happen with a possible blackout. Luckily if it's a fight response it has only been non injures responses that I can remember. Like picking up someone off the ground or a double outward parry.

Lots of deep slow breathing has helped me a lot, doing something you like can help distract you from your anxiety, I use noise cancelling headphones to help block the some of the sounds that bother me. Low dose beta blockers can help knock down adrenaline and don't take two weeks plus to work. If someone tries to prescribe you benzodiazepines ask about Pregabalin before you try any of those. I need to sleep or I would write more.
 
Keesha

Keesha

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 19, 2019
Messages
1,362
Location
N/A
Hey Antimatter.
I suffer with anxiety which can lead to panic attacks. It’s something I’ve had for most of my life but after being repeatedly & violently gang raped, I was scared to go out and became seriously handicapped. I cut my hair, purposely gained a huge amount of weight and spent most of my time loathing and berating myself. It was serious self torture.

I was just like you and didn’t want to take anything. Trusting anyone was almost impossible and after doctors pushing lithium on me which made me pass out, I didn’t want to trust anyone else but after 8 to 10 years like this I knew something had to change.

Anyway I went to see a doctor who put me on Effexor and within 3 weeks I was venturing out and socializing. It worked really well for me. It’s the kind of drug that needs to be gradually increased until you are at the desired level .

The REALLY important thing about these drugs is you can’t just go off them ‘cold turkey’ without some devastating results. You have to go off them gradually and it should be doctor monitored.

Once on these drugs then that ‘exposure’ therapy can work. You PLAN on walking to the first corner and back. Listening to music might be very helpful to you. I live for music so find it Very comforting. If someone tries talking to you who you don’t wish to , just point to your head set , earphones and mouth sorry and shrug your shoulders.

Do this for a week and increase your walk each week. Keep a journal and write down your progress. You have no idea have helpful journaling your progress will be and how liberating it is to look back in your journal with pride knowing how far you’ve come.

You can do this.👍
I have complete faith in you. 😎

One day you will be out playing in the park with your family, listening to their laughter as you play with them. The sun will be shining, the birds will be singing and you’ll feel like a million bucks. 🥰
 
E

EstherRose94

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 2, 2019
Messages
2,881
Location
USA
Exposure therapy sounds scary but you can take it in tiny steps. You must be pretty tough if you’re managing without meds right now and you have kids as well. I can’t imagine that. So I’m sure you can take those tiny steps. For example, exercise is a trigger. You can start with like some gentle stretching routines and see how that goes. You don’t need to go outside and run a 5k. Agreed that trying an SSRI could make that easier. I take Zoloft, I tried two others before but this one works best. So if the first doesn’t help, you can tell your doctor and ask to switch.
 
Antimatter

Antimatter

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 19, 2020
Messages
714
Location
UK
Many thanks for the responses xx
 
R

Reecandoit

Active member
Joined
Apr 14, 2020
Messages
33
Location
USA
I’m in the same boat, I think I need medication but afraid to get on them.
 
Top