I have only been back to work for 3 weeks and during that time chest was getting tighter by the day and when talking feel as if air was getting squished out of me.

I've had a horrible past 2 years with my chest, been referred to immunologist because of all infections I get. Had a stressful week last week and had a terrible panic filled weekend.

My GP has signed me off work and prescribed diazepam to calm me down, he checked my lungs and they are clear (which I knew anyway). He said stress of work and anxiety is having knock on effect with asthma.

Chest is constantly tight and I feel like screaming it is driving me crazy! Peak flow hasn't changed and pulse very fast.

Feeling very muddled and fed up at the moment

Lisa x

5 Replies

  • Sending you a hug in sympathy Lisa. Are there stress busting techniques you could try building into your life. Yoga, mindfulness, tai chi, or some kind of flow activity like art that can give your brain a rest for a period each day?

  • LisaA

    I'm so sorry you're feeling like this. I have also experienced dreadful anxiety but I have worked out that it only happens when I'm on increased doses of medication. For example, I was on Symbicort 200/6 and was absolutely fine. I was also fine when I had to increase the doseage until I was using about 6 times my usual amount. After about 2 weeks at this level I started to experience anxiety for no reason that I could see. This continued for the whole of the rest of the time I needed the increased dose and for about 3 weeks afterwards, when it tailed off to nothing. I have had the same experience whenever I have had to use a much higher dose of whatever medication I have been on over a prolonged period. My GP and asthma nurse weren't interested in what I was telling them and wouldn't consider changing my medication, to the point where I stopped using any at all because I was in such a state of anxiety (DON'T DO THIS. It is a bad idea and only goes to show how nuts I was at the time!)

    However, I have recently had a bad time because the management at the health club I go to started using a ghastly air freshener in the locker rooms and I needed to increase my meds again. When it got to the stage that I started to feel anxious I went to a new Nurse Practitioner at my surgery who was fantastic about finding new meds that would deal with the asthma withouty making me anxous. It's been a bit of trial and error but I new feel fairly confident that my medication isn't going to sabotage my sanity if I have to increase the amount I use over a long period.

    Winnie was right about looking for stress busting techniques but I would encourage you to discuss possible changes in medication with your GP or asthma nurse, if you have reason to think that your meds might be part of the cause of your anxiety.

    Good Luck with it.

  • Hi, Lisa. So sorry to hear you're feeling like this; I have had a similar experience in the past but to a lesser extent. I've had GAD (diagnosed) since my teens but only started having panic attacks over the past ten months or so. Before I got some exam results last July and after some personal stress I started having frequent panic attacks over the space of two weeks which felt like asthma attacks. It can be truly horrible and very frightening.

    One of the things that I found helped me were ASMR videos on Youtube. It sounds a bit weird but I found them very relaxing and helpful. They might not work for everyone but they were the only thing which would help me when I woke up in the early hours struggling to breath and my inhaler did nothing.

    Here are some of my favourite videos from that time,

    The NHS also has a really helpful breathing guide for anxiety,

    The final thing I'd recommend (but not push) is going to talk through your anxiety with a professional (if you haven't already.) Getting counselling last Spring was enormously helpful for me but it's a tough thing to look for. I know I haven't beaten anxiety but it helped me understand it more, I guess. I wish there was a greater concentration on counselling/therapy services in the NHS because they can be life changing; the waiting times are ridiculous. Apologies if advice is simplistic/stuff you already know. I've also found online blogs and support groups quite helping.

    Really hope this helps but I definitely understand that it might not. Sending a virtual hug! Hope you feel better soon x

  • Thank you for the replies, I went back to see my GP last Thursday and ended up on 8 a day pred and a nebuliser. Still feel grotty, chest pains, sore throat, voice comes and goes. Finding leaving the house frightening and I get so worked up and anxious that I physically shake, I don't know what doom I expect when I walk out of the door but it's not nice so of course I am not going out unless it's absolutely necessary. I am booked back in with the GP on Friday morning think I need a good chat with him because I seriously feel like I am going crazy!

    Sorry for all doom and gloom

    Lisa x

  • I'm really pleased that you're going back to your GP and I hope that you get some help with this. It might be worth making a note of how often you get anxious and what has set you off so your GP will understand the difficulties you are facing.

    Good luck, and let us know how you get on.

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