New to panic attacks

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-13-2012
New to panic attacks
Tue, 10-16-2012 - 10:25am

Hi everyone - 

I have never in my life had a panic attack....until I did.  I am 45 and I had one about 6 months ago.  I was fine with that.  It just happened once and I was dealing with some intense emotions in my therapy so it kinda made sense.

But then, I had one in my grad school class last night.  It hit out of the blue and completely caught me off guard.  This makes 2.  I had chest pains, got very hot and felt completely overwhelmed.  I excused myself from the class and as I walked down the hall to the bathroom, I started crying and felt so out of control.  I sat in the bathroom and made myself breathe and calm down.  I wiped my face with cold paper towels and went back to class.  Fortunately, it was short-lived and I could function well enough pretty quickly.  I am just learning about them.  I must say, I do not care for the unexpected and inconvenient aspect of them.  Wow - just freaking out a little today that this happened again.  I am impressed with all you that have to deal with these regularly as they are so upsetting.

Not sure what to think.  I will definitely be discussing with my therapist tomorrow.  

Thanks for listening.

Avatar for nawleansdarlin
iVillage Member
Registered: 12-27-1999
Tue, 10-16-2012 - 2:24pm

Welcome Pushingthru!

I'm sorry you are going through this and it all may be directly linked to the issues you are dealing with in therapy.  Medications may help you through this and it very well could be short term for you. 

Controlled breathing is an excellent way to get back under control.  I'm 44 and had my first full fledged attack at 43.  I've had small atttacks off and on through my therapy but nothing like I had last year.  Like you I got really hot, I couldn't catch my breath, panic filled my body and I tried to calm down.  I needed meds to calm down.  I am impressed with your ability to gain control so quickly. 

It is a very good idea to discuss these attacks with your therapist.  Perhaps you can pinpoint some trigger that you can prepare for. 

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