Panic attack

Chat with others about dyspraxia and share your experiences.

Panic attack

Postby parnassus » Fri Apr 22, 2005 7:59 pm

I am not a happy person today, as I had a mild panic attack. (My first one for nearly five months - I'm getting much better at controlling them.) As usual, noise and overcrowding were the culprits. I was tired, so very tired, and this naturally made me more vulnerable to the situation. I was in the school canteen when it happened. I was sipping on a glass of orange juice and trying to focus on what the people at my table were saying, but my brain seemed a long long way from reality. This is always the first danger-sign. Stupidly, I didn't move. I confess it: sometimes I'm too proud to submit to what my poor befuddled brain begs me to do. I was unkind to my own mind. I stayed in the room. Which started to blur at the edges. Then it began to spin, slowly at first.

I tried to tell the person sitting opposite me what was happening, but he thought I was just upset about a bad piano lesson - I am not very articulate in these situations. Who could understand what it feels like when your senses are amped up and your language dissolves? This is what upsets me the most about the panic - when you are about as graceful as a hippopotamus on a rampage, have all the visuo-spatial skills of an amoeba, and a very unusual attention span to boot, language ability is really the only thing you've got left. When that disappears, I feel...horrible.

I left the canteen abruptly. Everyone assumed that my departure was precipitated by the conversation topic at hand. (One of the girls at the table had apparently been talking about sex and I have a reputation for being notoriously prudish.) I hadn't been listening - it's like being trapped in a horribly lurid vortex that is full of unbearable sound. I headed straight for my library and calmed myself down with some books, but I remained jumpy for a long while.

I am lucky that I got off so lightly. Sometimes I unconsciously rip at my skin with my nails when I'm in a panicky phase. I am just despondent because I thought I had discovered effective strategies to counterattack this particular demon. Clearly not.
"This above all, to thine own self be true." - Polonius, Hamlet.
parnassus
Site Admin
 
Posts: 5883
Joined: Fri Jul 16, 2004 8:10 pm
Location: Over here

Postby medrich11 » Sat Apr 23, 2005 11:25 am

That sounds horrible :cry:. I haven't had anything like that happen to me for a long time and I really hope it doesn't happen again. I do know how you feel though, I tried to suffocate myself in a particularly bad day when my "friends" had just turned against me and were throwing rocks at me and attacking me with car seats.

Hope it doesn't happen again.
Image
medrich11
Mega Poster
 
Posts: 280
Joined: Sun Mar 13, 2005 7:11 am
Location: Ramsgate

Postby Helen » Sat Apr 23, 2005 2:45 pm

Hi Vicky,
Just wanted to say how sorry I am to hear you experienced a panic attack yesterday. It must be so frustrating for you, particularly as you have made such great progress in feeling calmer in busy situations and controlling the attacks. Try not to get despondent Vicky. You have much on your mind at the moment, with exam grades and University placements to worry about and this will be why an attack occured. I know it is easy for me to say, but try to make sure you have enough relaxation and rest time, so you avoid becoming over tired. Have you ever tried the Bach flower remedies?
Rescue Remedy is available from Boots and can be very helpful at times of stress. I use it personally and would not hesitate to give it to Matt or Clare. You only need a few drops either straight into your mouth or in a bottle of spring water and then sip it throughout the day.
It does have a calming effect.
Take care Vicky and try not to worry about yesterday.
Sending hugs,
Helen x
Helen
Mega Poster
 
Posts: 384
Joined: Thu Apr 22, 2004 7:31 pm
Location: Milton Keynes, Bucks

Postby Hermionefan5 » Sat Apr 23, 2005 4:36 pm

I don't think I have ever really had a panic attack, but I have gotten scared and had weird thoughts in my head. Back in the fifth grade, I had a terrible thought during one of those times. I used to be afraid of cigarettes so I would walk to my saxophone lesson and I would have these thoughts that the grass was cigarettes and it scared me! I have had some bad days like you mentioned where I am just worried about something. I had one the other day. It was fine until I learned that someone in my high school graduating class had committed suicide. I never really hung out with him, but he was very nice to me. It saddened me the whole day and gave me bad feelings. I was also worried about my biology test for the next day, so that just added to it. I hope you feel better soon.
:)
Image is from "Gilmore Girls" Season 1
"You are the same as everyone else."--"Forrest Gump"
"I want you to go out there and skate for these people like I have seen you skate."--"The Cutting Edge"
User avatar
Hermionefan5
The Cat's Pajamas !!
 
Posts: 2358
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2005 2:51 pm
Location: The United States of America :)

Postby parnassus » Sun Apr 24, 2005 3:18 pm

Thank you, everyone. I'm grateful.

I was in town yesterday and on Helen's recommendation I have bought a Bach flower remedy from a local outlet of Holland and Barrett's. I plan to use it regularly throughout the exam season.

Despite the stress, I love my work and wouldn't sacrifice it for anything. Speaking of my study load, I must apologise to Phil here - I still haven't had time to respond to his CV. Don't worry, I have read it and will write a detailed response as soon as time permits.
"This above all, to thine own self be true." - Polonius, Hamlet.
parnassus
Site Admin
 
Posts: 5883
Joined: Fri Jul 16, 2004 8:10 pm
Location: Over here

Postby Matt » Thu Apr 28, 2005 9:37 am

Hey Vicky,

So sad to hear about what happened to you on friday. I hope you're feeling ok now. :( I often seem to have panic attacks while I'm in crowds. It takes a while for me to calm down afterwards.
User avatar
Matt
Site Admin
 
Posts: 215
Joined: Thu Apr 22, 2004 7:42 pm
Location: Milton Keynes, England, Europe, Earth. You may have heard of it....

Postby lucinda » Thu Apr 28, 2005 8:40 pm

I tend not to get panic attacks, although certain places make me dizzy. Certain areas of my local library, and glass lifts, or full length glass windows. My legs just refused to move when I went to my dad's new office, which is on the 6th floor of a London office block, in a 'modern' design with windows which slope outwards from floor to ceiling. Also if there's a lot of repetitive noises I get violent and angry which I try to control but shouting, door slamming and heavy beats really get to me.

It must be horrible to have panic attacks though. I find that I can regulate how I feel by not eating certain foods, like crisps, because they contain flavour enhancer (monosodium glutamate) which doesn't do me much good, and artificial sweeteners, which I appear to be intolerant to. I also go running a lot, because whilst I have never been accepted in any team sport, I run on my own or sometimes with friends, usually when it's dark in case I fall over or something, and because I have an 'unusual' running style. It helps with stress and makes me feel better.

I gotta go now: it's getting noisy and crowded in here.
lucinda
Member
 
Posts: 18
Joined: Sat Apr 23, 2005 11:20 pm
Location: London, UK

Stress Relief

Postby Hermionefan5 » Fri Apr 29, 2005 12:44 am

Yeah, running or jogging is good for reducing stress. I also found out, once I could ride a bike, it is a good stress reducer too. So is walking. I like to walk my dog when I am home. 8)
Image is from "Gilmore Girls" Season 1
"You are the same as everyone else."--"Forrest Gump"
"I want you to go out there and skate for these people like I have seen you skate."--"The Cutting Edge"
User avatar
Hermionefan5
The Cat's Pajamas !!
 
Posts: 2358
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2005 2:51 pm
Location: The United States of America :)

Postby Ann Ony-Mous » Fri Apr 29, 2005 7:01 pm

I am very sorry that you had a panic attack. You are not weak and it is wonderful that you are coping as well as you seem to be. Your senses are very sensitive to sounds and smells - a very good thing that can be a gift, but it is not your fault if they get overloaded sometimes.

I get panic attacks when:

I fall off my bike (something that happens all the time: I only just mastered it a year ago and I am still very shaky. Unfair!!!)

When I am in a big crowd with a lot of noise

When I have to phone some one to ask them to tell me the homework (oops! Another empty slot in the old homework diary) or to ask them over. (Nerve racking or what.)

When I am playing netball (there are too many people in a confined space and the movement of the ball makes me feel dizzy and scared and sometimes makes me fall over as I think something or some one is going to hit me.)

When I think some one is talking about me or is being rude to me.
When the going gets tough...the tough get going.
Ann Ony-Mous
Advanced Member
 
Posts: 45
Joined: Sun Mar 27, 2005 11:11 am

Postby Ann Ony-Mous » Fri Apr 29, 2005 7:13 pm

My most severe panic attack in the last couple of months was in netball. It was wet outside so we had to play in the sports hall. We were all put into groups of three in a confined square, so that we could practise dodging and passing at close quarters. There were nine groups all together so we each square space was arranged in one big square. My group happend to be in the center one, so everywhere I looked there were people passing balls at seemingly impossibly close quarters.

Everything began to speed up and I began to flinch whenever I though a ball was coming near me, when in fact it was meters away. I couldn't escape to my teacher without crossing the abyss of moving people and flying objects. I managed three disasterous passes before I completely broke down. I sank to my knees and burst into tears. I felt dizzy and scared and the motion, that I couldn't judge automatically like anyone else was giving me a headaceh. I felt miniscule, and the ground seemed to sway as my sense of balance dissolved into confusion. My PE teacher thought that I had been hurt because I was crying. I told her about my problem and she swapped my group into the corner, and made me work facing the wall so that I could only see motion on one side of me, and I could focus on the wall if I felt panicky again.
When the going gets tough...the tough get going.
Ann Ony-Mous
Advanced Member
 
Posts: 45
Joined: Sun Mar 27, 2005 11:11 am

Postby Ann Ony-Mous » Fri Apr 29, 2005 7:42 pm

I also can sometimes become inarticulate when I am panicking. In the incident which I just talked about it took me ten minutes to gasp the story out to my teacher.

When I am getting mildly pankicy at home my Mum tells me to do my singing exercises. I have to inhale for a count of for, and then sing out for a count of four, inhale again and sing out for a count of six, and on a good day, the same procedure and sing out for a count of eight. It regularises your breathing and helps to wash the panic out of your system. It also stops you from hyperventilating.

I find the library a haven too. I try to spend at least five precious minutes of my lunchtime, in the quiet, comforting, safe atmosphere, browisng through the books, almost like a pick and mix. Forming new ideas for my own stories. It calms me down immensely.

I find that a hot bubblebath, or a fruit or a mint tea, also help panic, stress and fatigue because of the comforting warmth and the strong, relaxing smell.
When the going gets tough...the tough get going.
Ann Ony-Mous
Advanced Member
 
Posts: 45
Joined: Sun Mar 27, 2005 11:11 am

Postby lucinda » Fri Apr 29, 2005 10:19 pm

You're lucky that your teacher is so understanding. Yeah, I never liked the confined spaces when playing netball. I didn't like the size of the ball, either. But I did a lot of training when I was 10 and learned to throw and catch, something I'm very glad of now.

I have problems with making phone calls. On a mobile for some reason it isn't so bad, because generally I only call people when I need to call them and I'm doing something else at the same time, but calling someone from my home phone, I feel sick and nervous and jumpy, even if it's a friend I'm calling. I don't know why...
lucinda
Member
 
Posts: 18
Joined: Sat Apr 23, 2005 11:20 pm
Location: London, UK

Postby Ann Ony-Mous » Wed May 04, 2005 8:33 pm

Same!
When the going gets tough...the tough get going.
Ann Ony-Mous
Advanced Member
 
Posts: 45
Joined: Sun Mar 27, 2005 11:11 am

Postby Hermionefan5 » Wed May 04, 2005 9:00 pm

Yup. I have trouble with phoning too, but I am getting better each time I call. :)
Image is from "Gilmore Girls" Season 1
"You are the same as everyone else."--"Forrest Gump"
"I want you to go out there and skate for these people like I have seen you skate."--"The Cutting Edge"
User avatar
Hermionefan5
The Cat's Pajamas !!
 
Posts: 2358
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2005 2:51 pm
Location: The United States of America :)

Postby C » Sat May 07, 2005 11:38 am

Hello Vicky,

Sorry to hear about your panic attack. It must have been very scary and I'm glad you're better now.

I've never had a panic attack; at least, nothing as severe as what you described in your first post. But I do have moments when I'm in crowded places when I just feel so dizzy and stressed and like I have to 'get out.' This can occur even wehn places aren't that crowded, just walking along the road hearing cars go past sometimes sets me off! I don' think that is a panic attack because it's not as severe, but there's something wrong! hmm...

Charlotte x
C
The Cat's Pajamas !!
 
Posts: 1001
Joined: Sat May 07, 2005 11:21 am
Location: Hertfordshire, England

Next

Return to General Dyspraxia Chat

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest