Tag: panic attacks

Me, Anxiety, and My Stomach

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Ugh! My stomach hurts! And it’s not because of acid build up my stomach (although it can happen time to time). It’s because I had a panic attack. Well…it had happened yesterday on my way to work. There were sooo many things on my mind: work, relationships, my exam next month, wondering if I even studied enough… My left arm got tighter and tighter, while my left arm was tingling and getting numb, my chest was was getting tighter too. I thought I was having a heart attack! But I was to myself, “Naw! I’m only 30! I just turned 30 years old 4 months ago! I mean it so much, I had to pull into a parking lot of a nearby store, because i couldn’t drive any further. I just couldn’t. So I called my job and told them, that I had chest pain and I couldn’t come to work because of that. They understood. If only, mental illness was accepted just as easily as chest pain…

Anywho, when I eventually got home, my stomach was so much pain! *sigh* Another sign that I was really stressed out. And why wouldn’t I be? I missed a day of work, which could have really helped me out in paying bills. Great….

Chest pain + Arm numbing/tingling +stomach pain=  discomforting pain!

(just what I needed)

It took me a long time to realize it, but I had a bottle of mirtazapine (aka Atrax), my psychiatrist gave me three years ago (it’s fine; it still works). I never liked taking it because of how it made me drowsy. I mean, it worked well for panic attacks, but not something to take during a day. I had to take even hours before my bed time, so I wouldn’t get drowsy throughout the day, especially while driving. Man…I forgot how that pill knocks me out! So much so, I could sleep through all the conversations that were taking place outside my bedroom! The tightness and numbness/tingling went away, thank goodness. As for the stomach pain (acid build up)…well, it kinda still remains although, I don’t know if it’s because I haven’t eaten or because I am still stressed out.

But you know something? I think it’s because I’ve skipped my meds. Before I was diagnosed, I remember always experiencing panic attacks, but now, since I’ve been diagnosed and since I have been taking my meds, it has come less often and it’s not this painful. Two reasons… One. I have kinda been feeling peer pressure not to take my pills, from family and friends. I keep trying to explain why I’m taking it and it’s not making a drug addict.  And they’re trying to tell me, why I shouldn’t. I know they mean well, but I am doing what’s best for me. But I am ashamed of myself for giving into it. I just want to stop being judged for taking them. Reason one…I hate taking medicine. Period. Although, the irony here is I have to so I can function otherwise my anxiety. So lesson learned here: don’t stop taking your meds until you meet with your psychiatrist to discuss a plan on how to get off them.

Finding Help for Mental Health

There are various resources to help you or your loved one manage a mental health crisis. Below are various websites that can lead to mental health resources either over the phone or in person.

National (U.S.)

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Offers International Phone Number
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Offers International Phone Number
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International Sites

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Mindfulness Activity

Despite the simple directions given below, it is  one the simplest method of reducing an anxiety attack! This is very effective! Trust me… Whenever I have an anxiety attack overcoming me, I use this technique. Sometimes if I have happen to have an anxiety attack when I forgot my pills, especially when I’m out somewhere and I don’t have my anti-anxiety pills, I use this technique and it really works! Then when I return home, I take my pills. This mindfulness activity is also one of many activities my CBT therapist provided to me. So, look over it and check it out! It may help you out when you least expect it!

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Once you have found one of those five things, focus  on it to reduce the anxiety attack. It could be few for a few seconds or whenever you feel your anxiety go down.

Welcome to the World Panic Attacks

Anxiety…eesh… This picture I think perfectly describes what being in panic attack looks like.  As you see in the illustration, we don’t know where the character’s panic attack is happening—which was what I go through when this happens. All you see is her being surround by her thoughts and being drowned by overwhelming feeling of  this illness. But then and even during the event she tries to use things she enjoys and reminds herself to admit the problem when it happens and then learn to take life one step at a time.  Even though the comic illustration is meant for teens, I think this just as applicable for adults .