Avatar universal

Can't breath?!

Long story, but PLEASE read. I need some reassurance!

I started having bad stomach pains near the end of 2009. It stopped but came back about 1-2 times every 2 months. Around July of this year, it started getting worse and worse and by then, I knew something was wrong. I got an ultrasound and turns out I had a stone stuck in the neck of my gallbladder. My doctor transfered me to the childrens hospital to take to a general surgeon (I'm only 16 so if I would need surgery, it would have to be at a childrens hospital) and the doctor set the date to August 9th for Gallbladder removal. Then it started ( I think it started a little bit before but it was REALLY mild). I started getting chest pressure, and mild shortness of breath. I was so scared because this has never happened to me before. A couple of times, I felt l like my throat closed up and I couldn't breath, but it only lasted about 30 seconds. The day of the surgery, I talked to my doctor about the chest pressure and he said that it wasn't uncommon for people with a bad gallbladder to experience these symptoms. After the surgery was over with, I felt SO much better. I was prescribed tylenol with codiene and I was sent home. Then it all got worse. Now I have CONSTANT shortness of breath. Like sometimes it's ok I dont notice till I remember I had it but like when I wake up I'm in shortness of breath. My chest pressure got worse. Sometimes, my shoulders and neck hurt while I have shortness of breath and chest pressure and then I go "OMG HEART ATTACK SDFKJLKJ" and keep my hand on my chest to feel my heart and it would be beating pretty fast but the thing is, I've been healthy pretty much my whole life (knock on wood) until now. I feel like the pressure is mostly on my right side but sometimes when its near the middle or on the left I panic and start to think I'm having a heart attack. I've went to the doctor a couple of times. My doctor doesn't seem worried. The first time she gave my allergy pills because she said those might help and that I should get some fresh air when I feel like this. I told her that it could be asthma but she said my lungs were clear and they sounded good. The second time I went, she listened to my chest again and she said my lungs sound clear. She said if something would've been wrong, she could've heard it with her stethoscope. She told me that my chest might be tight so she would give me a breathing treatment and if it helps, then she'll g ive me an inhaler. It didn't help, and infact I felt lightheaded. She then told me that she thinks it's nothing but anxiety. She told me to breath in deep, and out through my mouth, to excersize, to get fresh air, and to try not to think of bad thoughts. I told her "what if I cant get all the air into my chest" and she told me to not think like that and to calm down and breathe. Now that I think about it, I am having more bad thoughts lately. I've been thinking more about death, and just stuff that I dont like to think about. I'd check the stove continuosly before I go to sleep at night to make sure everything is closed and that my door is locked. I really want to believe it's anxiety, but I just can't. Should I try to ask her for some anxiety medication? What were your symptoms of anxiety? Help!!
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358304 tn?1409709492
Sounds to me that you are DEF. having symptoms of anxiety, and the sooner you accept it as anxiety it will get better. Therapy works, and also some anxiety meds help as tools for a while to get you through it. =) Your so young (im 27 i consider myself young too haha) but you will probably grow out of this.

You mentioned this started before surgery... you were probably scared and your body had anxiety, which the feeling of chest pressure, the feeling of you cant breath etc. are VERY COMMON symptoms of anxiety.

You also said "I panic and start to think I'm having a heart attack." <--- this right here is your THOUGHTS making you scared. You really have it backwards written here. What really happened is FIRST, you "THOUGHT you were having a heart attack, THEN you panicked. This is anxiety at its best.

Every thought you have has a chemical reaction in your body believe it or not.

What you are doing is doing a pretty good job at scaring yourself. Who wouldnt be scared if they thought they were having a heart attack? But, the sooner you learn its just anxiety symptoms, the better it will get.

You've gotten PLENTY of CLEAN BILLS of health from your Dr. and theyve told you you are fine. You need to learn to accept that you are a young and healthy 16 year old. =)

People with anxiety worry alot, and with the symptoms comes more worry, its a evil little cycle. =) But you can retrain your brain to not think that way.

If you are still obsessing and scared and having anxiety symptoms, go see your Dr. and talk to her/him. You will be glad you did. =)

Visit this page and you can see all the fun and crazy things anxiety can do to you. I've experienced just about every one of them. But I'm getting WAY better with my anxiety. ;) And you will too. You'll be good in NO TIME. =)


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358304 tn?1409709492
ps: just for more peace of mind... at your age, I've NEVER heard of ANYONE your age of having a heart attack. ;) VERY VERY VERY VERY RARE. Okay? ;) Take care.
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Avatar universal
thank you so much! the thing is though, i really really want to believe it's anxiety but it's because I've never had these symptoms before that I dont believe I have it. My mom has bad anxiety and depression so maybe it's in my genes. Do you think I should try some medication? I'm scared that if it isnt anxiety, that it will affect my body in a bad way.
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Avatar universal
oh and one other thing that also leads me to believe that it isn't anxiety, is sometimes i get the pressure when i'm not worrying about something. can you still get symptoms even if you're not thinking of an ything bad?!
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Avatar universal
Hey there,

yes, it's usual to feel those symptoms while you're not actually feeling anxious, I too have recently been having anxiety symptoms because of stomach problems, I was diagnosed with gastritis, and i've always been a healthy person I was never sick for more than a week or so... So when I had the first panic attack I really felt like something was awfuly wrong with me, I went to the doctor and it seems I'd been drinking too much and had gastritis :P
stupid thing though is that I got really anxious whenever I put in my mind that this stomach infection wouldn't go away...

This is anxiety, when you're always thinking that it may be something else, you're constanly "argueing" with yourself, thinking what you may or may not have. And this fear, when it reaches its peak, your body will react to it and seem like you're actually having physical problems...

I've read a great program for "self-help" that really eased my mind of anxiety, its called the panic away program... Basically the most helpful thing I learned was that anxiety is not a mental illness (which by the time, I though I had one, and it was making things even worse) it's just your fear messing with your body sensations... If you could make yourself sure that nothing's wrong, that you have nothing to fear, the symptoms would go away, but it's not that easy sometimes...


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