Beta Blockers

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I'm 24 and have suffered from anxiety, panic attacks, depression and all the joy that comes with that (ha) since I was 16. I cope pretty well these days, and have learnt to control my ways, the odd trouble here and there of course. I live a very normal and good life. I moved to London for university and regularly fly (on a plane :-P) on my own, when a few years ago I couldn't leave the house for weeks and my panic attacks would leave me screaming and sometimes having to be sedated. It Does get easier all you that are struggling, I promise. I have such sympathy for anyone experiencing anything like this, it really can be your own personal little hell, with fire and the devil and everything. If anyone ever needs to chat, or wants advice (I am pretty much miss knowledge when it comes to anything anxiety, panic, depression.. Unfortunately ha) feel free to message me.

Anyywayy... :-p I have been taking beta blockers (inderal) for 7 years. Varying strengths, now I take 40 mg twice a day. These days I don't really take them for anxiety or panic attacks, I take them to ease the tightness in my chest. I haven't thought too much about that before recently (crazy I know).. But I just wondered whether anyone else experiences the same? It's really whenever I don't take them I just feel pressure in my chest and my heart thumps and races sometimes. I intend to go

to docs but as I'm sure some of you also feel, I don't have much faith in GPs when it comes to anything mental health related. I have read about beta blockers causing heartburn, I don't Think it is heartburn but I'm going to try gavisgon. It just worries me that I have been taking them so long I have developed angina without knowing and now I Have to take the beta blockers to calm the angina? I would Massively apreciate advice from people who have been taking beta blocked for a prolonged amount of time, or anyone really. If anyone has any instances of taking beta blockers for a long period of time and how it has affected them I would be really greatful.

Thank you :-)

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8 Replies

  • Posted

    Hiya henny

    iv'e been on beta blockers propananol for a year o.k not a prolonged period...i stopped taking them for a breif time and my panic came back so i restarted them i wasn't in a good place to go it alone...i found i sufferd more with heartburn when i took gaviscon don't know if it interferred with my natural acid balance!!!

    I would see your g.p after all this is not a mental health issue and beta blockers do upset the acid balance can't rember which up or down good luck x

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  • Posted

    Thanks for the reply. Yeah they do help with panic attacks and anxiety quite a lot. I'm just in a place of worrying about the long term effects now I'm having this chest tightness. My mum seems to think it's just anxiety, but I have Always suffered from anxiety and never really has this, and if this is just anxiety it's even more evil than I thought! Yeah I will make my GP be of some use haha. Good luck with your panic, they can be utter s*ite!! They do get lesser!! :-)

    Thank you!

    If anyone else reading this has taken beta blockers for a fair while, or even knows more than me (I know shockingly little about them sadly, I have done my research but can't seem to find many people who have taken them for a while), I would love to hear from you! Thank you.

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  • Posted

    Hi Hennybo, i read this post and thought i could give a little of my experience and hope it helps, I have been on Beta blockers (propranolol) for around 5-6 weeks now for panic attacks ....... I know, I know its nothing compared to how long you've been taking them......I started on 40mg x3 daily and changed to 80mg slow release up to twice daily, funnily enough for the first few weeks i started them I found that around the time when id usually be having a panic attack (I only ever got them on a night) I was getting heart burn or my heart would flutter, with these id also get the first initial shock of panic, but this only lasted a few seconds where the heart burn and heart flutters would last a while. Every so often I would also feel tightness in my chest and find myself feeling a little breathless or like my lungs had shrunk and i couldn't take in as much air. All this disappeared after week 4 though and i haven't had any side effects since.

    So i guess this isn't so much about advice but more along the lines of reassurance, or i hope it is anyway. I know I've not been taking it as long as you but i did get exactly what you described within a short time of starting to take propranolol.

    I'd just like to add that before taking propranolol I never suffered with any of the above so I know for sure it was the meds, but also that I'm not in the slightest aware of what normal side effects are coming off of Propranolol either, and this is the first time I've taken a beta blocker so apart from the above i don't really know much else about them.

    Anyway, I hope the side effects wear off soon.

    Danielle x

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    • Posted

      Thanks Danielle, 

      Yeah from what I read beta blockers can damage/hinder the little flap in your esophagus (don't know what it's called ha) that stops stomach acid escaping. I think (thank frick) that's what it was as my mum

      suffers with a similar thing so I took some of her meds and it seems better for now 👍 Yeah I had the same side effects as you, I was convinced it was my heart/angina cause it happened mostly when exerting and my heart would beat faster. But I think it's that heartburn is made worse by stuff like that. So if you ever have it again it's called rinitidine :-) 

      Good luck with the propranolol, they really helped my panic attacks x

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  • Posted

    I started taking them today ad read online about side effects ad now I'm wife awake convinced im going to die by taking one which was good fee hours ago xx
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    • Posted

      Haha, googling side effects never makes you feel better does it. Don't worry, you won't die haha. Beta blockers are pretty good for mental

      health stuff as they aren't psychoactive or additive in any real way. I'm only having side effects now after 7 years of being on them! Remember you don't have to take them every day like anti depressants, you can just take them when you feel you need them and they will work. Don't be scared of them, they can be quite helpful, you can always cut the pill (not of they are the slow release ones with balls inside) and take a bit at a time.

      Good luck :-) x

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  • Posted

    Hey I have suffered from panic attacks for 7 years nearly 8 years. At the moment I can't leave the house. Which is horrible but even worse when I have three children. I have tablets and have been given beta blockers. I'm at the end of the line I want to be able to take my children out. I want to be happy about them going to school in September but I'm freaking out about that. If you could help me that would be amazing. I've just starte
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    • Posted

      Hi cazyanna

      I was just googling your post, I've got 2 kids and suffered on and off from anxiety and panic attacks. At one point I didn't leave the house for 6 months. Then eventually little by little I did . I never had an medication for it . Till recently I've been out on beta blockers cause after 10 years it's returned with a bang. I'm not even comfortable in my own house . I know your post is from 3 years just wondering if the tablets helped and you got relief.

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