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Anxiety,panic Attacks Prior to Menstrual Cycle

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Hello, I am a 33 yr old single female, I tend to bloat, get constipated or have severe nausea...The bad thing is when I begin to feel nauseated as I do now, I go into a panic attack..My heart is racing and I feel like I am losing control...I jump for the anti-nausea pill, but before that kicks in I am trembling and my stomach is burning...I also develop a lot of gas.....This is usually 2 weeks or later building up until I actually start...The doctors want to put me on anti-anxiety paxil cr but with my stomach...I don't think it would help...Does anyone else go through these symptoms and have you found relief....The panic attacks are the worse, I try to meditate, and focus....But again it is when I an nauseated...I lose all focus...This has ruined my relationships, I am to embarrassed to have the panic attack.....Any help or advice would be greatly appreciated....
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First Helper g26pa
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replied August 4th, 2004
Extremely eHealthy
I never had this sort of attack but I do get panic attacks & have suffered pre-menstrual bloating with gas so have some idea of how you feel. It must make it worse, knowing that it will happen every month.

Do you have any other stomache or bowel related problems - I ask because one thing that occurred to me was diet. Not as in losing weight but if you have an auto-immune disorder (irritable bowel syndrome for one) you might be eating foods which your body can't tolerate - or which your body can't tolerate at certain times of month due to your hormones being "different" - I would suggest that you do some on-line research (google or yahoo) re affect of hormoneal changes on stress, also on bloating of stomache & on gas.

Some further research (one place to start would be lowcarbfriends.Com - ibs sufferers etc use it) into what foods you may be eating which may be ok for your system normally but not "then" - also you could talk to your dr about getting your hormone levels checked at different times during the month - I know they'll alter but perhaps if they're altering beyond "normal" limits that knowledge could assist you.

Do you have panic attacks at any other time?

Do you/have you practised the meditation & focussing on a regualr basis for several months? Because for these to work you first have to "learn" the process so that you can put it in place "instantly" when an attack occurs.

Have you looked into cbt (cognitive behaviour therapy) which many colleges & hospitals run free or cheap courses in - there's alsoa book - which I can't get here!!!! But which I understand is excellent - been there done that, do this! By sam obitz
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replied August 4th, 2004
Thank you for the advice, you made some great points...Yes, food tends to taste sour or different @ that 2 week to a week prior to my period. I feel as if I have ibs only during this time.. Gas builds and the nausea kicks in...Yes, I will look for the book. I am going to make an appointment with my Dr. And hope she will give me her ear..And i'll find some relief..
Again thank you!
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replied August 4th, 2004
Extremely eHealthy
Three things - ibs is often associated with or made much worse by stress!! Exclamation Idea so you should try to eat according to ibs "rules" at those times when you are affected & definitely practise (so that it becomes second nature) relaxation/meditation & look into cbt>

good luck
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replied August 5th, 2004
Re
I've had anxiety attacks for two years now. They started to get better and more under control over a year ago. Although every month right before my period I get heart palpatations and panic attacks(this goes on for a few days). It drives me crazy because I know that without fail i'll be having a perfect month and then it's time for my period and i'm going to feel icky.
I don't know why this is. I've asked my doctors but they have no answers. I think it might be the strenghth of the hormones surging through my body at that time. When I went on the pill that seemed to even out my hormone levels and although it still happened it was much much less severe.
I posted a question similar to yours but no one ever answered.
Erlybo
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replied August 10th, 2004
Experienced User
I suffered from panic attacks before I learned how to use the cbt tools to help myself get rid of the attacks and my depression. I had them throughout the month but they definitely spiked around my periods. I was in a cbt group and you may want to try and find one in your area because I think it would help you. We used the obitz book and another really good book called mastery of your anxiety and panic-third edition by michelle craske and david barlow in my group and I recommend both of those books all the time.
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replied January 25th, 2009
Panic attacks and thyroid
I have had periods of panic attacks for a few years now. Usually I'm fine until the winter months and then it gets bad where I feel like I can't do anything. I was diagnosed with a underactive thyroid few years ago. Last year I had panic attacks one after the other constantly for a whole week and wasn't able to go to work. When I would get them, it is almost like you feel like you are getting the stomach flu or something because it is so nauseating, but it's like the whole thing has to run it's course and then my heart and everything calms down. When I first had one, I called my parents in the middle of the night thinking I was having a heart attack. Then as I started talking to my mom, I started to calm down. I got back on my antidepressant but still had to have the doctor give me something that would work within a few minutes just until my antidepressant started working again. Then I decided to have my thyroid tested and found out I had gone into more of a hyperactive mode. As soon as my dosage was adjusted I started feeling better and didn't have any panic attacks for a whole year, until once again, this past December, I started having the same problem. Right away I decided to go to get tested again or at least have my medicine adjusted, found out, yes, my thyroid was hyper again. I stopped taking my medicine for a couple of weeks and have felt better every day. Now I'm getting ready to start my period and had a couple minor attacks, but from what I've read, thyroid medicine actually takes a while to get out of your system as it takes a while to get into your system.

I suggest anyone having panic attacks get their thyroid tested. Your thyroid is all about hormones and your pituitary regulates you thyroid and your ovaries - actually any kind of hormone your body produces. I have also read that so many women go undiagnosed with hormone conditions. I wasn't diagnosed with my problem until my hair started falling out and I went to the dermatologist. My GP never even noticed my reading wasn't what it should be.

I hope this is helpful.
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replied August 4th, 2009
I have IBS and find this causes my panick attacks, I use to suffer from panicks years back and things in my life settled and the attcks went.. now I have them because I work in a school and worry about breaking wind in a staff meeting which we have to attend.
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replied January 26th, 2010
I too have panic attacks. Usually a few days prior to my period. my heart races and i cant sit still. I feel out of control and cant concentrate on anything. I have it every month but as im geting older, it appears to get worse. The panic seems stronger, and my doctor says everything is normal. But it isnt to me.
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replied January 27th, 2010
also in my case. suffer from panic disorder. My medication helps , but prior to the period, I also have it for one or two days.

One thing that really help, which I learnt from the psyciatrist, the breathing. Only breath using the lower part of your lungs , slowly in and out. the moment you feel this anxiety attack, start this breathing excercise.

When breathing the incorrect way, which most of us do, your lungs push out alot of adrenallin, and that is the cause of the anxiety.

Excercise this breathing technique as often as possible.

believe me, Ive been through Hell and this really helps me.
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replied May 6th, 2010
1st panic attack...
I just had my very first panic attack this past weekend. I had a horrible headache for 2 days afterwards and I was supposed to get my period this week. So far, I am 3 days late. I guess stressing about the panic attack and my period not starting is adding to the delay of my period. Im hoping I do not start suffering from panic attacks every month like I see some of you unfortunately do because it was the most horrifying experience of my life.

I am curious what I am now supposed to do about my birth control. Since I have not taken anything all week, starting Sunday I should start the pill again, but if I don''t get my period, should I still start the pill??
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replied May 11th, 2011
Me too, guys, me tooooo! I am 41 yrs old and my periods aren't as frequent or severe as they used to be, I can always tell when I'm about to start. I feel totally uptight, anxious, and completely icky. Makes me feel like something horrible is about to happen. But I just always tell myself, you know what this is so don't let it get to you. I am going through that right now. Sitting at work trying to concentrate when all the h--- I want to do is go home and get in my bed and watch a good movie. Gosh, women just have too much to go through and too much to do.
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replied September 29th, 2011
I just started to have panic attacks last month. I had no idea what they were. I had all types of test done. Even went to Er. One night I was woken straight out of sleep with a major one. I thought I was having a heart attack. Called me medics. All my tests came back normal and they said I was only having a panic attack. I cried and cried. I felt drained, dizzy, lightheaded, a sandy feeling in my entire body from head to finger tips to toes, trembling, loss of appetite, loss of weight, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache. and a bad sinking feeling in my chest, racing heart and tightness in my throat like someone choking me. I told my Dr. all my symptoms and he put me on Celexa low dose. After 2 weeks I started to feel better. I thought I had it beat. Then I got my period. All symptoms came back but not strong, probable because of the medicine. It started yesterday and until today non stop but mild to medium. I am worn out. I feel it helps to talk to some one when I have it. only problem is trying to find a someone who cares and the time that I have them if they are available to talk. ( work or sleeping ) And praying lots of praying. I did not know that the panic attacks come around when the monthly cycle starts. This is all new to me.
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