Perimenopause and panic attacks.anxiety

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I am 49 and having most of the typical perimenopause symptoms EXCEPT, I'm also having chest tightning/anxiety and panic attacks.  Is this happening to anyone else.  I feel like I'm on my way to becomming a recluse; I'm getting affraid to leave my home.  I go out to eat with friends and I severly panic when I'm there.  I'm in a meeting at work and I start to panic.  It's becoming overwhelming and I don't know what to do!

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  • Posted

    Hi Cary

    I suffer from anxieties and panic attacks myself and yes its scary when i have them i feel scared like i am going to die and my heart beats fast 

    What we have to learn is to breathe because we forhet to breathe and we hyperventalate and that leads us into panic 

    Have you ever thought about medication for anxieties look in to some

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  • Posted

    Fraid so anxiety and panic one of my most horrific symptoms just started out of the blue too my panic attacks have calmed down after 4-6 months if full on but my anxiety Is still very uncomfortable unfortunately worrying brings it on more as your fearing the next attack I just started to accept they were happening after so long and they calmed down I also spoke to

    someone did cbt therapy yoga and acupuncture helped loads (I'm sensitive to meds) trying a very very very low dose of lexatin at the mo as I really struggle sometimes with the anxiety .. The headaches and weird head feelings are the worst for me and trigger anxiety x hope you feel ok soon x

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  • Posted

    Cary im afraid this is and could well be part of the perimenapause though i didn't experience this till  a few years later, post menopausal, This subject came up a while ago on hear, many of the ladys experiencing the same as you. I think the only thing we can do is try and make ourselfes do the things we used to enjoy regardless of how it makes us feel otherwise we end up indeed not wating to go out at all, a total recluse. Ive got like that i dont even want to put out the rubbish, only go out with mum or hubby or with a relative in their car from house to house or shop and home and again. i dont drive so have to rely on others. I felt anxious this afternoon going to the opticians.. Thing is to remember its the hormones playing with your emotions, i didnt go to our sons baby shower cos i couldnt face meeting new people, so i know what its like.  Take deep breaths, remember your the same woman you were before all this kicked in, just need to find what works for you, have you had a chat with your doctor? im sure your get more replys with things that helped other ladies on hear. But your not alone at all.

    Sue

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  • Posted

    Im 49 this has all started with me too.  Not fair.  Im taking Prozac and will continue to research till I feel better. There should be more done for this horrible perimenopause.  It's horrible.
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  • Posted

    Hi cary yea when mine started I was having one panic attack after another all day long n never went out or slept for weeks once I realised it was a symptom I srarted relaxation techniques to stop me and for weeks n weeks made myself do them until the attacks stopped now I rarely get one x its hard I know but u need to breathe thru it and try to tell urself it ur body making it happen and try to relax x hope u feel better soon xx
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  • Posted

    Dear Cary,

    I have suffered panic attacks on and off throughout my life because I suffer acrophobia. not to the extent that i dont go out but i avoid open spaces which bring on panic which is a horrible feeling. When i became peri I actually had a panic attack in the car which has never happened to me ever but the next day my period came so i connected it to peri. Tiredness and caffeine will make my panic worse too, it is all down to the breathing if you can control that it will help xx

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  • Posted

    Thank you all for your lovely comments.  I feel so much better knowing I am not alone.  So many of you have described my exact symptoms and moments of panic.  I completely agree it is the hormones (or lack thereof) and I will press forward and try to stay calm.  I'm going to implement breathing a lot more to relax and a lot of walking to clear my head and hopefully give me more energy.  I pray you all find relief SOON!!!!  Thank you again so much!!
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    • Posted

      Hi I've had head pressure, nauseau, heart palps and troubless breathing and an internal tremor feeling. Also pressure in my nose, tingling, insomnia and flushes through my body. Feel like passing out and just a very sick feeling. When this all stsrted, felt like I had the flu for a month straight. After months of waiting, got in to see a neurologist, bc no other docs knew what to do. He spent maybe 5 min with me, saud Touch your nose, etc. Did not even do a blood test, then saud it's anxiety. Really? Intermittent, all throughout the day? He prescribed an addictive drug, klonopin, which I'm NOT taking. Had CT, MRI scans of head, thyroid, all say normal. Feel very disappointed and back to square 1.

      I did get a FSH blood test 2 mos ago that confirmed I was peri. I'm 46. Any advice greatly appreciated! And has any of this gotten better for anyone?? Going on a year of this life challenge which has greatly interfered with work, Parenting and even getting dishes and laundry done...

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    • Posted

      HI. I read your post and registered on this website so I could reply.   I think I’m going through exactly the same things you are.  I started getting really bad headaches about 4 months ago.  After being told to take paracetamol by my doctor I paid to go private and saw a neurologist who did an MRI.   All was clear and he said it was migraines.   These have got worse to the point where I feel tingling in my head and face all day every day. I’ve had blood tests done which show a slight hormone imbalance and my doctor says it’s perimenopause.  She prescribed me propranolol which I took for a week then came off as I couldn’t handle it.   Since then I’ve been in a constant state of anxiety.   I’ve felt nauseous for weeks and am now taking anti sickness pills.  Im at the doctors just about every week and I’m going to have CBT. I’ve got a prescription for fluoxetine which I’m scared to start because of the side effects which I’ve googled.  It’s really starting to affect my whole life at work and home.   I’m even anxious with family members. 

      I was wondering if things got any easier for you. 

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    • Posted

      I'm so sorry Amanda, but so glad you responded, because I want to be a source of encouragement for you in what has been one rough journey, and who better to understand than one who has been through it! I have had some hot flushes/night sweats off/on, but that symptom has been the least of them. I have been to multiple doctors for year and a half, who never provided any answers, other than the one FSH test that confirmed perimenopause, and only tried to give me drugs, some of which gave me severe symptoms. I waited six months to see a neurologist (bc primary doc had no answer), who spent 10 min with me, said 'panic attacks' did no testing and wrote a script for clonazapam. It's every woman's choice, but let me caution you that some of these are indeed addictive and can make things even worse. Years ago, I was given an anti-anxiety drug I only took occasionally, began having symptoms, and was told I could 'just stop' taking it. Big mistake. Was in hospital two days. So just be careful. One other troubling set of symptoms has been the bizarre nose pressure, head pressure, like a tight band around my head, trouble breathing and overall allergy-like symptoms. It has made me hypervigiliant about everything around me. I got air purifiers, I always leave the air flow in the car to circulate inside the car, vs. outside, I was given inhalers at one point, and I keep essential oils with me, especially eucalyptus. That has worked better than anything I've been prescribed. I've also bought just about every anti-allergy/decongestist/anti-histamine product over the counter, and still maintain the essential oils work better than anything. Have you had those symptoms, too? And yes, the tingling or tight feeling in my face, on my scalp, etc. Plus other symptoms when I lay down to go to sleep like a feeling my breathing is pausing, or I am going to pass out and that will be it. Have been to the ER many times, and they're like, 'You again?' and just call it anxiety. So girl, I know what you're going through. I have also been through the ringer trying hormones. Again, each woman's decision, but I will never take the synthetic version again. Took for two weeks until I could see a naturopath to get on bioidenticals, and while I've never used hard drugs, it might as well have been like coming off of cocaine. I had almost continual heart palps, scary flushes through my body, sickness, etc. My dosages  have been changed back and forth with the biodidenticals, felt like a rat in a lab experiment, and every doctor had a different theory and disagreed on this or that. And the long and short of it is, they don't know what's going on, and tell you to see a shrink. At one point, I asked my doc to admit me to the hospital for further testing, and they said they wouldn't until I had psychiatric testing. Really? Talk about an insult. Later, he apologized and said it was a mistake. Later, I started having problems 'down there,' which was another whole challenge. Never got answers from the doctors on that either, or more conflicting opinions. Like my husband says, doctors are 'practicing medicine.' We had just started dating when all this started, and thank goodness he was there to help me and stuck with me. I was a single mom, and could barely get anything done I felt so sick. Around July, I did see someone who recommended taking the hormones separately instead of all at the same time, and it was then that my symptoms and quality of life seemed to improve. I still have issues, but they haven't been as bad as before. I just gave up on the medical community, because they never had any answers and all tests came back normal. Taking probiotics, Maca and Ashwaghanda (natural hormone balancers), green drink smoothies daily, adrenal support supplements has helped. I hope and pray any other woman reading my post will be encouraged and helped in some way from reading my post, and knowing they are not the only one, and that we have to be here for each other. Feel free to write any time.

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  • Posted

    Hello I saw this post and I’m gonna tell you how I feel. I’m 48 almost 49 and the past 2 1/2 years I’m experience random symptoms . The scariest one is the last month at work I was sitting at my desk and all of the sudden heart palpitations like my heart was gonna come out of my chest, check my HR and was 124 sitting I felt light headache, a joint pain on my left shoulder and I couldn’t stay at work so I went to the emergency room and run an ekg (was normal ) blood work for the heart to see I have a heart attack and blood clot . All results came out normal the doctor there recommended a holter monitor which I did have it wear it for 14 days and waiting for results . Now last Wednesday I got up and the Heart racing in my sleeep and nausea I end up in the Er again the did 2 ekg normal , they put on heart monitors for 3 hours everything was normal he hear some skipping heart beats but my blood pressure was normal the whole time and the Heart beats were under 100 until the last 30 minutes went up 105. And last night I had it again . This is crazy I hope find comfort and I want to go to the Er but is gonna be ok . Well see
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    • Posted

      Oh Aimee, I could have written your post myself.  The only difference is that I wore the holter monitor for 30 days.  I am 51 years old and my periods are just starting to become irregular after have consistent, normal, and uneventful periods since I was nine.  i would say the last 4 years have been plagued with exactly what you have described.  The anxiety and panic attacks first began to happen right before my period, and once I made that association I began to think they were hormonally driven.  i saw every type of doctor just like another blogger noted, been to the hospital several times, had all the test done and still there is nothing wrong that would explain how I feel,  i have not been to the hospital in awhile, as I am getting a better understanding of what is causing them.  I do like the other blogger said and just breathe, know that I am not having a heart attack and know that it will be offer soon.  

      I have gone back to school and I am 3 months from graduating with a Bachelors degree in alternative and complementary health.  What I have learned is that when our hormones levels, like estrogen and progesteron, drop during peri-menopause the have an affect on our Hypothalamus.  The hypothalamus is the part of the brain that plays a hugh role in the endocrine system that  is responsible for maintaining your body’s internal balance.  When the hypothalamus function is unbalanced due to the hormonal changes it can cause an over stimulation of your "flight or fight" response of your endocrine system.  Basically, telling your body is in danger and it needs to react. This can result in several physiological symptoms, like rapid heart rate, sweating, gitteriness, light headedness, etc.  In addition, since the hypothalamus is responsible for balancing the digestive system, you can also have excessive gas pain, bloating and acid reflux.  All are the symptoms I experience durinng my panic attack.  I avoid taking prescription drugs at all cost and always seek a more alternative approach to my healthcare first.  I am learning alot about eastern and western herbalism and have just recently discovered a herb that has brought TREMENDOUS relieve to my symptoms.  It is called MacaLife.  It is a plant-based (the MACA plant), organic, gluten free herbal supplement.  It promotes hormonal balance and addresses the symptoms that come with peri-menopause.  In addition to increased anxiety, I was having at least 20 hot flashes a day and my night sweats were so bad that I would wake up sweating as if i I had been doing a 60 min kickboxing class.  Since I started to take this supplement, my hot flashes and night sweats have basically completely stopped, I am less anxious and when I start to feel like I am having a panic attack, I am able to avert it.  I would suggest that you (and everyone else on this blog) Google ways to support the Hypothalamus and read up on the MACALife.  Also, increasing Vitamin C and taking Primrose helps with these symptoms.  Don't worry we are all in this together.  I hope this helps.

      Have a great evening!

       

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    • Posted

      Oh gosh, thank you for this really helpful post. My symptoms have almost sent me crazy especially the panic and anxiety. The health anxiety in particular makes it worse as every symptom makes me freak out even more. I am going to look for the Maca. I tried Black Cohosh but didn't seem to do much.

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    • Posted

      Hi Aimee. I understand how you feel! I was sitting at my desk working and all of a sudden, felt a strange head rush kind of sensation and didn't know if I was having a seizure or what. Have been to the ER several times, they never have any answers. That is only one of the many symptoms I've had (see my post above yours to amanda). Have you tried bioidentical hormones yet? There are differing opinions on which test is most accurate to test hormone levels - saliva or blood, and because hormones are fluctuating so much during this time, some doctors just go by what symptoms you are having, and make a script based on that. I would not do the synthetic hormones (see post). These are not real hormones (or are combined, very strong hormones from the urine of a mare horse) and have known side effects. Doctor Diana Swcharzbein is a good one to Google for advice on how to take hormones. She recommends supplementing with hormones only if they are missing, and a patch if you need estrogen, which releases it slowly. Or, find fermented sources of soy, like the Asian women use. Natural balancers like Maca and Ashwaghanda are good, and natural fats you can add to your coffee (like coconut or coconut milk) or salads (olive oil/omegas) help your nerves and support cholesterol (the latter of which is needed to help your body make hormones). B vitamins are also very important, for stress, nerves, and to make neurotransmitters and hormones. Hope this helps, and hang in there!

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    • Posted

      Hello iamhealth,

      This journey has been a year and a half for me. That is good information you shared about the hypthalamus. I just made some posts to the other bloggers with my story you can see explaining what I have been through. I also just discovered Maca and take something called Mighty Maca that goes in smoothies. Also been taking Ashwaghanda. And yes, the doctors never have any answers, just drugs. After taking one drug for the head pressure that started, I woke up with like half of my lung capacity. From there, I dealt with some pretty difficult asthma-like symptoms for a few months. Burning essential oils were the only thing that helped me get through it. Inhalers did nothing, and I didn't want to take their allergy pills with all the scary side effects. I felt like a sick person. And I was a single mom trying to work full time at a responsible community job. Interesting you mention Primrose, because I've read that is supposed to help balance your progesterone levels, whereas Black Cohosh balances the estrogen. I've also read that progesterone is the first hormone to start declining, not estrogen. I've been to so many (even alternative) docs who have different opinions on hormone dosing and what tests to take to test your levels, it makes my head spin. No one agrees, and if you don't see it their way, they just dismiss you as a patient and aren't open to anything else. I wanted to ask you if you think internal tremors and a shaking feeling inside would be related to the hypothalamus being off-balance and a result of the fight-or-flight response. Because I have those too. Sometimes they are worse than others, and when at their worst, it has felt like my brain is shaking inside my head. Yes, really. Or, my husband has said it felt like my body was 'vibrating' in bed. All of this is very disconcerting. I don't like to be near anything that is shaking or moving now, because it gives me that feeling and I don't like it. One doc said he thought the internal shaking was from testosterone being too low. Another weird thing is I had been supplementing with hormones, but when I tested, the levels were still low. But who knows if the tests were right; even the naturopaths all disagree on which tests are most accurate. Maybe I should start taking the primrose. I just started taking a progesterone with prenenalone in it, too. But I would love to hear your theory on the internal shaking sensation. Thanks for sharing your information. 

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    • Posted

      Hi again iamhealth,

      I was wondering if you knew if both Vitex and Evening Primrose can be taken together? Or is one more for PMS and the other for menopause? So far from what I've read, Vitex can help with fertility by raising progesterone (which is what I want to since those levels drop first). But I've also read that evening primose helps with increasing hormone production because of its Omega-6 oils, which are needed to make hormones. So not sure which one to use, or if it's Ok to use both. I'm also using bio-identical Biest and progesterone right now, but in minimal amounts. Since blood and saliva tests haven't been very helpful, and even with supplementing, my levels continue to remain low (if they are even correct, and hormones are known to fluctuate so much during this phase, I want try doing something natural like using these and Maca to help my body balance itself). So any direction would be appreciated!

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    • Posted

      hi hi I know your post is 2 myths old but I have been suffering from terrible shaking and trembling even my jaw tremors..have had really bad night sweats recently even thou my periods ended nine hrs ago with no real symptoms...drs have tested me for diabetes overactive thyroid.ardrenal glands...nothing.now being referred to endocologist as some think it’s meno symptoms which I have been told can last up to15 yrs.have never felt so anxious and scared in my life.its horrible..wake up in the night boiling sick and dizzy of balance..I thought I’d got away with it.. defiantly not
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    • Posted

      I'm so sorry Christine. I know how you feel. Luckily I haven't had as much shaking as before, but still have other weird symptoms, like a strange surge type of sensation in my head followed by a pause as if I might pass out. Sometimes it was so intense it felt like my brain was shaking in my head. Like it was spazzing out or something. And yea, try telling that to a doctor and see how they look at you! And it only seemed to happen when I lay down to go to sleep! It is a very unsettling feeling.

      I would try your B vitamins early evening, and make sure they are methyl Bs that your body can use, not cheap drugstore ones, melatonin and/or a 5-htp (increases serotonin levels naturally). And a good probiotic.

      I do believe the internal shaking is related to the nervous system, so anything you can do early evening to calm yourself and relax will help. 

      Have you done a saliva test on adrenals or cortisol? Most MDs will only do blood testing, which won't show anything for that. Most chiropracters or compounding pharmacies have the saliva test kits.

      Hope this helps and hang in there!

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    • Posted

      Endocrinology confirmed it's very unlikely to be Meno symptoms as nine years ago my FSH levels were over 2000..zilch estrogen...she thinks it's anxiety and insomnia..all my bloods were fine..urine etc...you can't sleep with no hormones thou xx thanks for replying xxc

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