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Fireandshadows

Panic Attacks

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Gone away
7 hours ago, ButterflyLady said:

I think my auto insurance company is purposely dragging their feet............still no compensation..........

Accident of April 7th? .... They do take a long time to settle claims. When your vehicle is written off beyond repair you tend to be more aware of the timeframe as normal life (as it was) is interrupted. We had a car stolen and destroyed ... insurance took months and the payout was pitiful. The odd phonecall to them may speed matters a little.

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Pinky and his brain
10 hours ago, ButterflyLady said:

I think my auto insurance company is purposely dragging their feet............still no compensation..........

Sorry, but that is quite common. The longer they can keep the money, the better it is for them. They don't care about the customers, only about their own bottom line. :(

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Butterfly88

I haven't had as many panic attacks lately!

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Butterfly88
16 hours ago, Paul said:

I hope you feel better.

Thank you, I do feel better today.

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Eliza

I have struggled with anxiety and panic attacks my whole life and have not had one in quite a while. The combined, list below is all I did, and it helped immediately. Here is what I did:

1. Cognitive Distancing: Realize the 'fear' is not real. There is a free video series you can sign up for on anxietyrevolution.com I have seen the first three (out of four) videos so far, and they have been excellent. The narrator explains the difference between fear and anxiety, pre-anxiety and full blown anxiety and much more.

2. I started taking Magnesium Glycinate. I take a total of 800 mg a day, but I suggest you start slow because it may give you diarrhea. I have the typical 'gut' problems associated with autism, so it has actually cured those problems as well. Some people take 1200 mg a day, some take only 200. They call it the 'chill pill' for a reason.

3. I cut coffee/soda down to two-occasionally three servings a day. I've discovered chamomile tea, a calming herb; I try to have 2-3 cups throughout the day. I also drink decaf, other teas and lots of water throughout the day. (I think this need of a cup in my hand is another form of stimming.) Before this change, I drank a pot and a half of coffee every day.

4. This one you may need to customize to your personal beliefs: On one side of a paper (I use Word) I write how people make me feel, on the other side I write down what God says about me in scripture. An example "Afraid" is written on the right-hand side, then scrolling to the other side of the sheet is written,"God gave us a spirit NOT of fear but of power, and love, and self-control." .I have pages and pages of emotions that are hard for me to deal with, with several scriptures for each. I look at them every day, but especially when I need to. If you don't believe in God/scripture perhaps you can find quotes that inspire you, or ??? whatever your personal truth is--whatever works! :)

All this stuff can be researched online. I almost quit my (part-time) job because of the anxiety, and I am so glad I didn't. I've tried several prescriptions and they all made my sensory issues magnify. Sounds echoed, even watching tv, any movement gave me vertigo. and so on. I've tried other herbs, still nothing. The above list is all information you can research online to decide for yourself. The Magnesium Glycinate is a little pricey, about 12 bucks worth lasts me a month and a half for KAL brand, but worth every penny. There may be lower cost brands for the same strength (90 400 mg tablets a bottle) If this info helps even one other person it is worth it.

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Paul
5 hours ago, Aspergian said:

I have the typical 'gut' problems associated with autism,

At the risk of being annoying again, I ask; "Do you know it is not wheat belly? " The symptoms are the same. Wheat causes malabsorption syndrome and because of that you get all kinds of symptoms that the doctors cannot cure and they do not understand why. When I first got off wheat I needed magnesium, iodine and D3 supplements and found them helpful, but now I absorb them from food, as was meant to be, so I only take the D3.

Quote

However, certain situations cause your body to lose magnesium faster than you can replace it from your diet. These situations include treatment with "water pills" (diuretics such as furosemide, hydrochlorothiazide), a poor diet, alcoholism, or other medical conditions (e.g., severe diarrhea/vomiting, stomach/intestinal absorption problems, poorly controlled diabetes). Web MD

To express my logic, I assume you have none of the medications above, leaving intestinal absorption problems. So what is causing your intestinal absorption problems? You've had gut problems your whole life, you have been eating wheat your whole life, maybe they are connected.

Meanwhile, as the hurricane gets closer, I get calmer while everyone else gets excited. I think it is the ADD. A majority of emergency personnel are ADD. At this point it is predicted to pass by 50 miles out to sea, so we are preparing for 75+ mile per hour gusts by Thursday night, and I expect to put up the shutters tomorrow. In 2004 Frances and Jeanne both did landfall ten miles from my house, so I hope, though I do not wish it on others, that it goes back east, and does not make a left hand turn at my front door. Funny how I panic at going to the doctor, but stay calm and focused in a real crisis.

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Eliza
3 hours ago, Paul said:

To express my logic, I assume you have none of the medications above, leaving intestinal absorption problems. So what is causing your intestinal absorption problems? You've had gut problems your whole life, you have been eating wheat your whole life, maybe they are connected.

 

Sorry Paul, you are 100% correct! "Cure" was an overstated word. I should have said 'chronic constipation and gas'. It has been extreme enough to send me to the ER a couple of times. Wheat is a big issue, especially for us autistics. I do eat one piece of multi-grain bread a day (sometimes 2 if I am really hungry) and seem to tolerate it, but avoid wheat generally and choose oat, rice or corn products instead. I have pre-diabetes as well and need to keep my blood sugar from getting too low, so I eat 5-6 small meals instead of the three typical large meals of the average American. Above are some tips that have helped me greatly, everyone needs to examine their own issues and tailor it to their own needs. Thank you for pointing this out.

3 hours ago, Paul said:

Funny how I panic at going to the doctor, but stay calm and focused in a real crisis.

This is a good quality many aspies lean towards. Keep safe in the storm, and please keep us updated.

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Paul
2 hours ago, Aspergian said:

Wheat is a big issue, especially for us autistics

I suspected as much, but have not heard any one say it. Thanks. It took a year wheat free to realize I was lactose intolerant also. A handful of chick peas helps with the bread chewing craving. As with cigarettes, big business has convinced us that we need wheat.

Definitely expecting 80 tp 100 mph gusting, so the shutters are going up. It only takes me an hour to batten the hatches. They are already predicting effects similar to Frances and Jeanne in 2004. At least we won't get the eye and the NE quadrant this time. The worst is predicted for us from 6 pm tomorrow to 6 am Friday. I appreciate your sentiment and if my internet stays up, I'll let you know how it goes. They are mandatory evacuating barrier islands and low coastal areas. I am safe, five miles inland. House is concrete block and roof has reinforcing straps to the wall. During Jeanne, I watched the neighbors roof edge lift up and down about a foot with the winds.

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Eliza
1 hour ago, Paul said:

House is concrete block and roof has reinforcing straps to the wall.

Awesome news. (Thank you for the entire reply by the way) I would give you a 'like' but I already used up my daily likes, lol. :unsure:

1 hour ago, Paul said:

Thanks. It took a year wheat free to realize I was lactose intolerant also.

Several aspies have both problems, wheat/dairy. I am lucky to get away with 1 slice of bread a day. Before I knew about it, I used to eat a diet around wheat bread, cereal, sweets, and could hardly function. Irritable Bowel Syndrome) Dairy has not been a problem for me (in moderation) In the past I went dairy-free for a month to see if it would help. I love soy products, so taste wasn't a problem. Unfortunately, my blood-sugar levels were dropping dangerously low, so I went back to dairy with no problems.

My doctor was telling me that the science of individual mapping is right around the corner.  Imagine one blood test to tell each person everything their body needs. I can't wait!

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Paul
21 minutes ago, Aspergian said:

Imagine one blood test to tell each person everything

That will be great.

Even spellcheck is telling me that I am repeating myself so I've procrastinated enough. I going out to close up the shutters. Now they are predicting definite tropical storm winds with 80 to 100 mph gusting.

TV weather just said I am expecting the outer edge of the eye to touch here.

Edited by Paul
add weather update

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Athkaraye

I get this all the time. It's so confusing. 

So what would be the difference between a panic attack and meltdown?

im so glad you posted this. I knew nothing about ASD when I experienced this at its worse, and I had no idea if it was an aspie thing or a trauma thing or anything! So thanks for sharing this experience :)

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DC1346
On 2/19/2013 at 1:12 PM, Fireandshadows said:

I guess I was just wondering if any of you have had similar experiences during panic attacks, or just what they're like for you in general.

Panic attacks? Yes and no. I have them ... but not nearly as frequently as I did many years ago. I'm 57 and as I've aged, I've continued to accumulate life experiences. These life experiences have largely helped me avoid panic attacks because I've developed a great many contingency plans that anticipate and sometimes prevent these attacks. 

Have any of you seen the movie, "Temple Grandin"? It's a great movie and features the early life of Dr. Temple Grandin. a woman who helped revolutionize the way the meat processing industry works. Dr. Grandin is also autistic and since she's mathematically inclined, she sees the world in diagrams with plotted angles and measurements. There are a great many YouTube films about Dr. Grandin both in her professional capacity as a Ph.D. in Animal Science and as an outspoken advocate for the autistic community. 

Unlike Dr. Gradin, I do not have a mathematical mind. Instead of seeing the world in diagrams, I react to the world as though the unfolding experience was a flow chart. Flow charts are linear and progress from one condition to another. Inputs (which on a written flowchart would look like a diamond) lead to multiple lines depending upon the choices you make. Each line then leads to different outcomes. 

For example, if someone were to say hello to me, my life experience has taught me that an input is required. The input gives me choices on how to react.

My thought processes go something like this:

  • Interrogative: Who is this person? Is he a friend or colleague? If he is not a friend or colleague, proceed to the next line. If he is a friend, proceed to the casual greeting subroutine which involves greetings and friendly banter.
  • Interrogative: Is this the parent of a student? If he is not a parent, proceed to the next line. If he is a parent, engage the talk to parent subroutine. 
  • Interrogative: Is this person a neighbor? If he is not a neighbor, proceed to the next line. If he is a neighbor, engage the casual talk to neighbor subroutine. 
  • Default response:  Say "hello" in response to any casual greeting. Ascertain whether any further response is expected.

I have a great many subroutines that help me interact with others and/or allow me to react to changing situations.

Some of theses (such as the thoughts I outlined for how to react if someone greets me) are quite ordinary. Others are bit more unusual. 

For example, my life experiences have taught me how to:

  • React to a fire. I was a volunteer fire fighter for three years.
  • Survive in a terrorist environment. I was a teacher at an American school in Saudi Arabia. After the bombing of our military base at Khobar Towers (where I worked as a volunteer baker), the U.S. State Department (office for Counter-Terrorism), sent some agents to train Americans in our local community in basic security precautions that included counter surveillance techniques, how to react if you're being followed, and how to evade potential terrorists. NOTE: I actually used these principles while on vacation in the Netherlands to avoid being mugged by a group of Dutch skinheads in Amsterdam. If anyone is interested, ask me and I'll tell you what happened.
  • Survive an in-coming missile strike. I was in Saudi Arabia during the 1st Gulf War when Iraqi scud missiles were being targeted at my community in Dhahran. When the civil defense sirens began wailing, the students and I would duck and cover under our desks with our poison gas masks at hand. The gas masks weren't put on unless a separate civil defense siren was sounded to warn of a chemical attack. 
  • What to do if your home has been burglarized. I learned this the hard way. My home was burglarized after I returned stateside in 1999. The good news is that although my home was literally cleaned out with all of my possessions removed, I only lost what I had brought with me. Since the movers had not yet arrived, the bulk of my belongings were safe ... though I did lose my laptop, my photo albums with irreplaceable momentos, and some valuable keepsakes that I hadn't wanted to trust to the movers. 
  • What to do if you're stuck in the middle of a desert. This happened in Saudi Arabia on a rural highway in the middle of nowhere between the communities of Dhahran and Ras Tanura. The good news here was that I had already contingency planned the possibility of a breakdown. I had a big floppy hat, bottles of water, a blanket, and suntan lotion in an emergency kit. If anyone wants to know what happened, please ask and I'll tell you the rest of this story.

This is not to say that I'm immune from panic attacks. Despite my life experiences, no amount of contingency planning can ever serve to keep this from happening. 

A few years ago, two colleagues at work yelled at me over what later turned out to be a misunderstanding. I fled from them, ran to my kitchen, unlocked the door, relocked it, ran inside, and squatted in a dark corner where I clutched myself and rocked back and forth while crying. I'm lucky that I have a 1st period prep because I didn't snap out of this until the bell rang for 2nd period and I heard students knocking at the adjoining classroom door which was locked. I wiped my eyes, tugged my culinary uniform into place, and proceeded with the workday shaken but able to function. 

 

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