Stress Induced Chest Pain-How to get rid of it?

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New Member

Date Joined Sep 2012
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 9/27/2012 12:06 AM (GMT -7)   
Hey all,
I have anxiety for the past few months and am currently starting Zoloft to hopefully help treat it.
Anyway, I experience chest pain almost daily sometimes it's a tightness, sometimes it's a sharp stabbing pain that only lasts a second or so.
But most of the time when it really bothers me is when I'm stressed. It seems as if the moment something bothers me-a stressful situation at work, or having to complete a crap load of homework I can feel my chest getting more and more painful.
Anyone experience the same thing and know of ways to get rid of it? Some say just to avoid things that cause you stress, but I can't very well just quit my job and school, and avoid any and all stress in my life- I wouldn't be able to live.
Anyway, the stress induced chest pain can get really annoying so any tips or pointers are helpful.  

Regular Member

Date Joined Sep 2012
Total Posts : 98
   Posted 9/27/2012 7:22 AM (GMT -7)   
hi, SW. welcome to the forum! i hope you will find the support you need here! i certainly know the stress of work and school -- i went to grad school full-time while i worked full-time. that was on of the most stressful times in my life!

yes, i have experienced chest pain from stress and anxiety. i manage my anxiety symptoms through breathing exercises and regular guided meditation/guided imagery. positive, logical thinking helps me, too, as does talking things out with my loved ones and distracting myself with things i enjoy when i start having physical symptoms.

that being said, have you seen a doctor just to rule out any physical cause of your pain? i don't mean to insinuate that it is something's just always a good idea to get checked out by a doctor to rule out any illness or injury so that you make sure you follow the right course of treatment and coping. since your chest pain comes during moments of high stress, it does sound like it is likely linked, but i encourage you to see your doctor about it, too.

when i joined the forum, scaredy cat (one of our moderators) directed me to the "sticky" post at the top of the forum main page. there are lots of great resources there to help you learn to cope with anxiety. once you get checked out by a doctor, if you find that you are experiencing anxiety, you might check out some of these resources. i'm working through the moodgym program right now, and it's both entertaining and helpful!

hope you continue to post here for support!
dx: dysthymia, generalized anxiety, health anxiety (hypochondriasis)

Scaredy Cat
Forum Moderator

Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 27108
   Posted 9/27/2012 9:56 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi and welcome!

You were given great advice by I will just add my favorite breathing exercise here for you. Sometimes the chest pain is caused by and unconscious habit of breathing improperly...causing the thoratic muscles to get overworked and fatigued.

Give this a try and see if it helps:)
The Divided Breath:
Imagine your lungs as having 3 parts. The bottome third, the middle, and top third. On the inhale fill the bottom third first, then the middle and finally the third. Make sure that this is one continuous breath, but divided, with a slight pause in between each third. Hold the breath in for 3-5 seconds if possible. Exhale in reverse. First blow out the top third, then the middle, and finally the bottom third of your lungs until all air is expelled. (remember the pauses) Repeat several rounds for a toatal of about 10 minutes. Practicing this every day will not only give you control and structure to your breathing, it will strengthen and loosen the thoractic muscles, allowing better, more productive breathing, and relieving the chest tightness!
Good luck, and remeber pracitce everyday whether your stressed or not, that way when anxiety really shows up you'll be ready:)
Scaredy Cat


"Courage is not the abscence of fear, it is feeling afraid and doing it anyway!"

"Worrying does not empty tomorrow of its empties today of its strength."
Corrie Ten Boom

Panic Syndrome recovery due to CBT

New Member

Date Joined Sep 2012
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 9/27/2012 5:51 PM (GMT -7)   
Hey guys and thanks for the advice! Frizbee, I have been to the doctor. Got full physical, 3 EKGs, a stress test, xrays, etc. Unfortunately, I am totally healthy. Lol. So yeah, I'm pretty sure know that it is all anxiety. I try not to let it bother me since they say the more you focus on it the worse it gets, but still it gets kind of annoying when it comes out of "seemingly" nowhere and you just think to yourself, "what the heck?" I guess since the doctors say I'm fine and healthy I'm ok, but I still think it can't be healthy either to have all that cortisol and other chemicals build up and last for so long. That kind of gives me more anxiety since I fear the long term results. Oh well. I'm hoping the Zoloft will help relax my mind and eventually my body.

And Scardey Cat, thanks for the breathing tips! I have tried and heard of many before and that really seems to help not only for chest tension release but also relaxation. Awesome!! Talk to you guys soon!
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