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Question
Posted by: Katie | 2008-12-18

Anxiety question

My hubby started to suffer from anxiety, It has been about six months now. He is seeing a pschycologist. My question is, When he has an attack, The heart pulpitations, the dizziness and wanting to pass out feeling etc. Is any of this harmful to him at all? is there a chance that he will pass out when he says he is feeling these symptoms?Is there a chance of a heart attack due to the pulpitations?
I need to know so that I dont panic when he feels this way, and will be more effective in helping him.

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Sounds like anxiety attacks, possibly panic disorder. During such episodes one is flooded with the same panic-inducing chemicals as would be released if you found a savage tiger entering the room --- so one feels terrified, has all the symptoms of fear, and is scared one will die, or collapse, or go mad, or all 3. Fortunately, this does not happen, but it truly feels like that. HEart attacks don't happen in these situations. ONLY Cognitive-Behaviour therapy helps ( other forms of psychological intervention are useless ) and some medications from a psychiatrist can also reduce the power behind such attacks and symptoms.

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

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Our users say:
Posted by: Katie | 2008-12-19

Hi there Um,
Thanks for your avise, We are still to find out what triggered this off, There were no traumatic events, our family life is a happy one.
Hubby does not want to go on medication, I just needed to re-assure myself that the symptoms he has cannot cause him any harm.
Thanks again, and I will keep u updated. (need someone to compare notes with)

Reply to Katie
Posted by: Um | 2008-12-18

Hi Katie,

Why did he start getting these anxiety attacks? Did something traumatic happen to him?

In my case it was a car accident, more than a year ago. As CS explained it truly feels as if you could die on the spot. I also get the needles and pins feeling in my hands to my shoulders, around my mouth and in my feet. As my psycologist explained - it happens because your adrenaline levels are unbalanced (especially after a traumatic experience). So you have to give yourself time, it takes time, patience and understanding. The best you can do is be there and near him when it happens. Ask him if you can get him anything, water, wet cloth, anything.

The doc put me on an anti depressants and something to take at night to sleep. Also I take urbanol if I do suffer an attack, which is mostly in the car when we take a long trip. But it gets worse if left untreated. I started getting attacks at even the slightest bit of excitement! Your body goes into alert too quickly and does not distinguish between fear and excitement. He must not fight it, it' s like a massive wave, the more you resist or panic, the harder it will hit you. The trick is to stay calm, take deep breaths. Also - healthy diet (not too much alcohol) and exercise helps a lot.

Good luck, I hope your husband can beat this.

Reply to Um

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