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Nervous and stressed out in a crowd, breathlessness, history of two panic attacks

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Practicing since : 2001
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I want to know if there is a term for getting so nervous and stressed out in crowds of people? I feel like I can't even breath, sometimes I just feel like crying. Even 3 people make me feel a grate discomfort. I have kind of become housebound for example I only go out to work and grocery shopping basically just go out, when I need to buy food and other things. I do function "normally" but with great difficulty, often attempting to hide my discomfort I try hiding by putting my hands on my face or anything else. Even though I feel like hiding under a rock and never coming out, but I would have to say that feeling like I am not able to breath is grater than anything else. Is there also something you can recommend? I really want to live a normal life. Through my life time I have gotten a panic attack twice only.
Posted Sun, 29 Apr 2012 in Mental Health
Answered by Dr. Rakhi Tayal 37 minutes later
Thanks for writing to us.

An exaggerated or irrational fear of crowds, getting stressed out in crowds is called demophobia. Part of your symptoms can be due to anxiety.

The treatment modalities include Behavior therapy, anti-anxiety medication, Psychotherapy, Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), Behavioral therapy, Exposure therapy, Relaxation techniques - controlled breathing, visualisation and Medication.

To help this problem you can take a few measures-
1.Check your caffeine intake-Avoid drinking too much tea, coffee or cola.
2.Avoid alcohol and cigarette smoking.
3.Try physical exercise like aerobic exercises daily for twenty minutes.
4.Avoid your worries and problems or solve them with the help of your family and friends.
5. Learn controlled breathing.
6. Do simple relaxation exercises like yoga, meditation, etc.

Final message to you: worry less and get psychiatrist consultation for treatment .

I hope my answer and recommendations are adequate and helpful. Waiting for your further follow up queries if any.


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