Anxiety/panic attacks

Hi ? all,   I had a TIA 4 weeks ago,  I posted on here titled "new to all this"..under My Story section.   Im finding this site a brilliant support, even reading posts I often find myself thinking yes!  thats just how I feel! 

Im sort of still in shock,  spent 4 days in hospital,  I lost my husband 8 months ago and I'm still raw, I was his carer for last 4 years as he was disabled,  mobility problems, and had heart problems. All that time I was the one who was physically able and though I had a failed knee op, was glad I could get out and about,  while my husband did what he could.

My "fear" now,  and I have read this is a common thought , is that a stroke may happen to me again. .I can't shake off the feeling, for the first time I can ever remember iim having panic attacks, especially in the town or in a supermarket. Part of me takes deep breaths and tell myself not to be silly,  but I start getting palpitations when I go out , even to familiar places/routes. Ive even found myself avoiding the pathway on the  route home and going"the long way around" as the normal route is where my stroke happened,   I was walking along as normal,  and just stopped dead,  my left foot  would not move and hand  started tingling,  I think I went into panic mode then.. how to get home , shall I ask a passer by for help, etc,  somehow I made it home , the relief!  But after ringing 111 and being told to go straight to A and E, I don't think I had time to take it all in. 

4 weeks later,  im exhausted,  I've never been a great morning person, but its a real effort!  Physically my hand  and arm tingling a little better and left foot numb but better than it was, enough to walk easier, but mentally I keep thinking " this isn't me".. I'm pushing myself out but even dread bumping into people socially,  they  have been kind, friends, family  etc but as I've read some of you say , I get told all the time "but you look fine". I even feel guilty saying im going back to bed  in the daytime,  a few people close to me understand that I'm still grieving, and of course that's been a double whammy for me to try and get my head around. Im normally a chatty positive person, but feel I'm withdrawing , and like some of you have said , I'm a little fed up saying I'm fine when I'm not. Mostly because people generally don't know what to say otherwise, or "poor you", which makes me cringe! 

Sorry for this waffle, in all this lovely fine warm weather I've pushed myself out, glad to hide behind sunglasses ? , lol     Its just that inside i'm bloody panicking and resisting the urge to turn back home quickly. I just try and take deep breaths. Feel so safe indoors. 

I was on Amlodipine until last week,  they made me feel white hot, almost faint,  and sweating , which didn't help ! Im off them for a bit now,  doc considering something else for blood pressure. Anyone else had these symptoms? My other meds are Clopidogrel and Avastatin,  with Amitriptilyne to help me relax or sleep ? in the evenings. 

Best wishes to all you fantastic supportive people on here,  all of us affected in may different ways and situations that a stroke happened to us. 

Thanks for listening/reading,  I really miss being me,  I just feel a mess!  But,  onwards and upwards hopefully x x x

Hi there. You are in quite a dark place at the moment, which is very understandable. I am three years post stroke and still have the occasional dread of another one. An odd twinge in the head or a hesistancy in walking might bring this feelingnon, but I know deep down I am just being over cautious. I was 72 when I had my stroke and am 75 now, so time is limited. I am a bit sad that I am getting older but not the same person I was at 72, but that is the situation I am in and accept it. I am partially disabled now but will fight to improve to the bitter end. I cannot do a lot of what I used to, but I can still do a lot (if that makes sense). Please live your life and do not lose it in unnecessary worrying. Life is to be lived. Enjoynit.

Hi tullalah,

i am very sorry to hear about your husband you must miss him so much and now to have your tia is very scary .

i too have had a tia and reconise your fear and anxiety. I can’t think of anything else other than another stoke happening and find my world has become so very small as I am fearful of going far or mixing with people.

i have to push myself as concerned I will stop leaving the house and can’t do that to my family.

I too find mornings difficult and am so glad to get home from work or from doing anything to being back on the sofa where I feel safe .

I have no small talk and try to smile and get on with it but it’s hard .

i take aspirin , simvastatin,beta blockers and now a antidepressant steraline .  I keep reading that after a year the risk goes down a little for another stroke , I hope that’s right so for now on I am trying to be brighter and move on ,I do miss me .

thank you for writing here as it’s nice to know others have the same emotions .

take care xx

I am not a medic, but I am lead to believe that the danger time for a second stroke is up to one month.

We do have to change our ways permanently and take medication permanently to help us reduce the chances of a second stroke. I got very close to death and now I am trying to live my new life for as long as I am allowed. 

That dreadful sense of fearing the world in general is hard to shift. I do find counselling to be a great help. Then I also go to relax classes. I expect that tai chi, yoga, meditation and so on are excellent alternatives. 

Above all, it is up to us to get ourselves "better". Help is great when it is given, but it really is down to us to move things along.

With the fear of a second stroke, I think of what my brain is doing. It did not like the shock of the stroke and instinct will make the brain wary. So it terrifies us at the least concern. For me, the fears eased steadily, but fastest when I had counselling. You have lots of us out here who know what you are going through and we are cheering you on. 

Do smile. Be positive.


Thank you Colin,  I am having counselling but its mainly bereavement at this time which is helping me to talk about things,  I am a positive person and I know I'm still that person underneath,  just got to peel off those layerslayers and gain my confidence back.  When you've been in the role of career for years you don't really think about anything happening to yourself,  so when it does , the feeling is almost alien if you know what I mean. Sure,  colds, flu, etc, minor things,  you soon shrug off,  I know I will be ok , but my mind has to adapt to my situation now,  I intend to do whatever I can to help myself, and, the biggie for me- accepting help!  

Thanks for your reply,  i appreciate everyone's support on here x

Hi ? mabel, thank you soooo much for your reply,  it feels important for any of us not to feel alone with what we are experiencing, and the fear.. 

How are you coping with work?  Ironically, after my husband passed away and practical things got a bit more settled ,( though still raw emotionally) I wanted to look for part time work,  being as I was my husbands carer for last 4 years,  but to start with volunteering in a charity shop, to regain some confidence,  also this helped me get up and out in the morning,  unfortunately the shop closed down, and I stayed in touch with the friends I made there for a while. I have 2 sons, one not far from me, the other in Liverpool, long way away from here. Theyve been great, but work a lot , I know I could call  them if I needed to. 

That word "safe" covers a multitude don't you think,  and relief.. of getting back home .  I feel I'm plodding on,  carefully, but trying really hard not to go downhill,  I think we all know on here the effort a lot of time of smiling outwardly when we feel the opposite inside. . like the cliche " if we had a broken leg etc, its visible" , often the hardest thing to explain is what isn't visible.

Sorry mabel,  hope  I'm not waffling,  at this moment its 11am, I'm sort of willing myself to get dressed,  didn't sleep great.  Its pouring with rain ,  but if it eases up im going to shove myself out,  lol,  if only for a little while. 

Take care lovely,  your reply meant a lot , big hugs x x

Thank you Colin .

lots of good advice, just time I suppose no fast way to get over this .

i will keep smiling 


Have you thought about looking for your local stroke group, You will be able to meet new people do activaties which will help with movement

I hope this helps


Hi Tullulah 

i hope your day has improved and you got out for awhile. I haven’t been out for for my daily walk today so feel guilty but had work and grandchildren so feel weary.

i went back to work straight after my tia and it’s ok I do get a bit anxious and always glad to get back home.

have you changed your diet and exercise more since your tia . I try to walk everyday and have always tried to have a healthy diet no longer having a glass of wine or a treat but no matter would rather be healthy. 

Anyway I hope you have a bettter night xx

Well said Tallulah

Its good that you have bereavment counselling. Maybe you could ask abut stroke counselling. It helped me so much.

New Tallulah will be with us sometime when you are ready.


Its a long journey and too much speed is not good. But lots of effort is what is wanted


Awww!  Thanks for your kind words Colin,  made me smile ? too,  yep,  she's in there somewhere! 

Hi ? Steve, thanks for message,  yes I'm looking into a group,  nearest one is 20 miles away and i don't drive any more,  though there is a support line etc run  by the hospital, mainly for advice and practicalities. 

At the moment im building up my confidence to do my daily tasks,  like shopping etc,   I live in a small town which gets crowded ,  the streets are narrow and can feel quite overwhelming, but often the good thing is I see people I know and can have a chat or a cuppa most times,  I go out on my bike  too,  but only when the rush hour traffic gone, or a Sunday,  lol .. 

I like you user name ..Daytoday!  

Think it covers a multitude,  lol 

Hope  you are managing to smile x

Hi ? Mabel, hope  you're more rested. What hours do you work if you don't mind me asking? Ive always done retail, but even before the stroke and caring for my husband I got fed up with being in shop work.  Im gradually wanting to build up confidence now to try something else,  through ive got quite a few hospital appts coming up,  want to make sure I'm improving in their eyes too before applying for jobs.  

Im vegetarian,  have been all my life,  its the texture of meat  (and fish) that I can't deal with,  when I was a baby /toddler, my mum said I just used to try and try to chew meat and then spit it out!  My two lads are big meat  eaters and I had no problem cooking  it.    I love  all veg,  I like some dairy,  but have recently got used to Soya milk, I try not to have too much cheese, .

I walk quite a bit,  but at the moment feel so panicky in any sort of crowded place,  and,  even if I'm in a queue in a shop I start getting palpitations,  thinking "hurry up,  I need to get home "..

It is sooo wearing having grandkids,  lol , my 3 are in Liverpool now though,  my son and wife moved there for work, so I don't see them as much,  but believe me,  I know it does take it out on you,  even though you love them to bits!  And I used to feel drained working then babysitting, even when I was in better health.

Take good care,  thanks for sharing love x

Hi Tallulah,

i hope things are looking up for you .I work 28 hours a week in an accounts dept and then have my 2 grandsons 2 afternoons a week which is lovely and keeps me busy .

I am doing ok just need to rid myself of the fear of it happening again and worse .went to see my gp yesterday and she seemed to think everything was fine .last week my antidepressants seemed to be working but have had a couple of days when I feel back to square one ,maybe this is normal as I have only been taking them for3 weeks .

i am like you trying to put a big brave face on and looking like I am ok but a jelly inside.

the reason I asked about diet is when I speak to doctors etc they say to eat what I want as I am under weight due to the stress but when I read up it all says low fat low salt etc .so meals seem to be quite boring now ?as I said before I have always eaten healthy.

I did mention to gp that my heart races and I have to coughs lot but she didn’t seem concerned . I would like to know why I had a tia and then I could manage it better .

still want to be home and safe on the sofa but pushing myself .

sorry to ramble on .

enjoy the sunshine and take care x

Hi there, 

I’m deeply sorry to hear about your husband and can only imagine the stress and emotional hardship this must have caused.

Im 28, also had a TIA on 28th December whilst relaxing on the bath, 3 days in Hospital, as a result moved back towards friends and family and had to find new work. MRI results showed 3 areas affected and now taking clopidogrel. There’s been no known cause as of yet, but too I keep experiencing panic attacks and anxiety. I used to use a gym almost daily and take part on friendly competitions but have been since due to anxiety of over exhertong my body in any way. Went last week which turned into an anxiety episode  driving home. You said you avoid situations near or related to where it happened? I now avoid baths completely and hit showers. Bought a Fitbit as a way of reassurance but it’s had the opposite effect, become almost paranoid reading my heart rate. 

How are you finding these  counselling sessions so far? I hope you’re finding them beneficial! 

You mentioned  your GP has referred you for counselling? I went last week saying I needed this and was told they couldn’t help and had to self refer, which I now have. 

In terms of reactions to medication I have nothing now but for the first few weeks I had a very strong itching sensation all over which subsided after about 10days but nothing else. 


Wishing you all the best in your recovery so far.


-Alicia. X

-Also adding to this. Can completely relate to your experience of feeling safe indoors. It took about 2 weeks to go outside on my own, went for a short walked around the fields nearby, nervous too, and got hit with overwhelming emotion about the whole event. 

Its difficult to try and explain the feeling. Since then I’ve felt much more comfortable being independent but I do get moments still.

i really hope these sessions are helpful and you’re feeling more Confident about your daily routine. Everyday no matter how small the step is, you’re still taking it and that’s such an achievement. X

Hi, I think we all can relate to youre worrying about it happening again.  I am 18 mths post stroke and I hate going out on my own,  infact I only go to my little job two days a week on my own.  I follow a set root and if I don't arrive I know contact will be made with my husband who will come and find me!!  I know it probably sounds silly but it makes me a bit more confident.  The rest of the time I try not to go out without having someone with me. 

Also we all get the " you look fine" issue, unfortunately those who have not had a stroke cannot possibly understand how it effects you.  The stroke fatigue, fear of another one etc..  Keep talking to your doctor, and try to get hold of local stroke coordinator mine is fantastic.

Keep going onwards and upwards.  Wendy

Thanks Wendy!  Much love  x x

What area are you in,I am pleased you get out and about, Do you know if there are any fellow stroke survivors around your area.