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Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 351
   Posted 8/28/2008 4:26 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi i'm new to the site.  I have been suffering from panic disorder and anxiety attacks for about 3 years now.  It actually had my first one while I was registering for my wedding at bed bath and beyond.  I didn't know what the hell was happenening I thought I was dying.  Then I realized okay these are panic attacks.  I couldn't breathe, swallow, I would even pass out sometimes.  They are really bad.  I also have crohn's disease and the anxiety of not knowing when or where I would have to go to the bathroom would just increase the anxiety.  I spend almost 4 months in my house mainly my bedroom because I was afraid to go anywhere.  I didn't go to stores, drive, nothing.  Now I still have that anxiety but It's a little better.  I take xanax but it doesn't always help.  Recently I had a small bowel ressection and now have a temporary ileostomy and the anxiety and panic is at its worst.  If someone has any similar situations or advice i would love to hear from you.  thank you.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 2446
   Posted 8/28/2008 5:33 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi and welcome to HW

Many folks here understand and are in your shoes.

I too have passed out from anxiety, though passing out during a panic attack is close to impossible because the blood flow during the attack prevents passing out. When you passed out, did you pass out cold? Had you eaten on these days?

I never had crohns, but did have IBS and also had the anxiety of when/where I may need the bathroom. I'm pretty much over that now. I no longer have IBS.
Back when I was 20 (I'm now 42), I was also housebound for 8 months or so. Exposure got me over that, but I still feel agoraphobic to some degree

Are you of have you ever been in therapy for this?
Moderator - Anxiety-panic forum
where we take it one panic attack at a time
The world breaks every one and afterward many are strong in the broken places

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 2721
   Posted 8/28/2008 7:29 PM (GMT -6)   

Hi Bella,

Welcome to HW, I hope we can help you out. I've been living with panic attacks for 17 years and I've had anxiety all my life, so trust me, I understand how scary and isolating this can seem.  You are certainly not alone in feeling this way.

You mentioned that the xanax doesn't work for you sometimes. What dosage are you on? Do you take it regularly or just when you have an attack? many of our members take anti-depressants to help manage their anxiety and it seems to help them out a great deal. Have you considered talking to your doctor about this?

Please feel free to vent and ask for support when you need it here. We look after each other :-) ..again, welcome, we love new members.



Co-moderator Anxiety/Panic
Panic Attack Survivor
Weekend Warrior Princess

Elite Member

Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 8/28/2008 7:59 PM (GMT -6)   


Welcome to HealingWell and the A & P Site. I suspect some of your fainting issue was your bodies response to the panic you felt re your Crohns. My husband has Crohns and has had this happen to him.

It does not matter if you feel frightened, disorientated, dreamlike, or unsteady. These feelings are an exaggeration of the normal bodily reactions to stress.

Just because you have these sensations doesn't mean you are crazy. These feelings are just unpleasant and frightening, not dangerous. Nothing worse will happen to you.

Let your feelings come. . Don't run away from panic. When you feel panic build up, take a deep breath and as you breathe out, let go. Keep trying. Stay there almost as if you were floating in space. Don't fight the feeling of panic. Accept it; you can deal with it.

Try to make yourself as comfortable as possible without escaping. If you're on a street, lean against a post or a store wall. If you're at the cosmetics department of a store, find a quieter counter or corner. If you're in a boutique, tell the salesperson you don't feel well and want to sit for a while. Do not jump into a car and go home in fear.

Don't indulge in stinkin thinking, "Why can't I be normal ? Why does this have to happen to me?" Just accept what is happening to you. If you do this, what you fear most will not happen.

Think about what is really happening to your body at this moment. Do not think "Something terrible is going to happen. I must get out." Repeat to yourself "I am ok, I will not die or lose control."

Try to distract yourself from what is going on inside you. Look at your surroundings. See the other people around you. .They are with you, not against you.

When the panic subsides, let your body go loose, take a deep breath, and go on with your day. Remember, each time you cope with panic and anxiety, you reduce your fear.



Kitt, Moderator: Anxiety/Panic & Depression
& GERD  Forums
*~* *~*
Not a mental health professional of any kind
It is health that is real wealth and not pieces of gold and silver.~Mahatma Gandhi~
Clickable Link: Anxiety-Panic Resources

Regular Member

Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 98
   Posted 8/29/2008 10:24 AM (GMT -6)   

I know what its like to not want to go anywhere because you’re afraid and “episode” will hit and you’ll be nowhere near a “facility”.  I don’t have Crohn’s but did have a bad case of colitis – which scared the heck out of me thinking I was going down the same road as my mother!  So I did everything under the sun to prevent that from happening.  And doing better now – still working on it, but its 80% better, I’d say.  (still have to run to the bathroom some days though)  My mother and dear friend both have Crohn’s.  My mother has a colostomy and my friend was able to have his reversed.  I grew up with my mother’s anxiety in learning how to deal with her disease. 


It does add a substantial weight and a whole world of unknowns…your anxiety is normal, no worries.  The other problem with intestinal disorders is that, if we want to go new agey here for a minute, they are directly related to our emotions, and our “power” specifically.  When I was able to recognize the connection between the two – at least I didn’t feel like everything was falling apart (which I know it feels like some days).  If I could say, “ok, this is happening because I have uncertainty about what could happen if I go out, but if I go out and make myself “check” on myself every 15 or so to eval my “intestinal state” and reassure myself that its not rolling out of control, take a deep breath and continue” – I usually got by just fine.  And when we went somewhere, I did make the bathroom my first stop.  Just a habit.  You’re paying attention to yourself, not getting distracted and then surprised (though I know sometimes it still does, but regular toilet trips “just in case” usually made it better) – I guess it made me feel like I was in control for the most part then. 


If you want to talk, let me know…the good news – my friend lives a normal life now that he got over the hump of Crohn’s.  He controls most with diet now, but he still can indulge and have fun too.  My mom – different story, she got hers when no one really understood it and almost died because they all told her it was in her head – her colon is gone and some small intestine – but it all happened when she was 29 and now she is 62 and even had a child in that period too!  I almost have my colitis gone – just have to watch it! 


You are actually doing something to make yourself better – good will come from it.   And just remember that emotions and the gut are very connected – its hard but try to concentrate on not getting caught in a vicious cycle of one making the other worse and visa versa.  Lots of deep breathing and focusing on good.  Honor the fact that your body has to go through this to be better, but don’t let it be #1 in your life.  Always make sure some iota of joy is.  Gets me through the day. 


Hugs to ya, K

Elite Member

Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 8/29/2008 10:45 AM (GMT -6)   
Thank you for your post. wink
I just want to remind members with anxiety and Crohns that we have an excellent Crohns Forum too, so please do drop in and meet some of our Crohns members who also have anxiety issues.


Kitt, Moderator: Anxiety/Panic & Depression
& GERD  Forums
*~* *~*
Not a mental health professional of any kind
It is health that is real wealth and not pieces of gold and silver.~Mahatma Gandhi~
Clickable Link: Anxiety-Panic Resources

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