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helping my 11 year old w panic attacks
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my 11 year old girl has recently started having panic attacks. ive read alot of discussions here but still feel like i dont know what she is going through bc i have not experienced one myself. i have made an appointment with her physician but what can i do during her attacks in the meantime? Is this something she is going to have to live with for the rest of her life??
Posted on 07/28/09, 12:23 am
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Reply #1 - 07/28/09  12:48am
" Don't get ahead of yourself! ; - )

At this point, I wouldn't worry about her having them the rest of her life, as panic in children can be very different from panic in adults. In children it tends to be situational, meaning that there might be some reason this is happening, everything from a bully at school to pressure from too many activities.
There are also medical conditions that can cause it, so it is good that you are taking her to the doctor. In the meantime, try to figure out when these attacks are "triggered". What is happening right before they begin? Meals? Exercise? Sports? What sort of activities is the child avoiding? Is she avoiding friends? Spending too much time on the internet? There may be a reason she feels scared or threatened that she doesn't want to talk about, so you have to try and figure out what is going on.

Don't pressure your daughter with too many questions about this, though as it can make things worse. Just provide calm and reassurance that there is nothing to worry about and that both of you will figure this out, with a doctor's help. Once your daughter has seen a pediatrician and ruled out any physical problems, then you will probably need to see a child psychiatrist for help in finding a good treatment. "
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Reply #2 - 07/28/09  1:43am
" When i have a panic attack the quickest way to get over it is to distract my mind. When it's happening to you it's very hard not to focus on what you are feeling. When my huband is here with me i get him to tell me it's ok and then start a conversation about something simple. It can be hard for him to do when i'm freaking out so sometimes i have to call my mom. But just having them ask simple questions like what did you make for dinner tonight? what are your dogs doing? or even what are you doing tomorrow? will help.
I've had anxiety since i was about 5 yrs old and i'm 24 now. I've been told i will have it forever but there are ways to control the symptoms. Your Dr will be able to help but one of the most important things is to feel supported and not have someone get angry with you for panicking, so be patient. "
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Reply #3 - 07/28/09  7:02am
" Wow so youg to start having them did something happen to trigger them?. There ususally is an underlying cause that started them if you find that perhaps you can stop them before they get out of control. I think at 11 you will have a much easier time to get them to stop. During the attack keeping the mind distracted will shorten them just be there to love here and support her. Explaning to her that it is just adreanline rushing through her body and it can't hurt her may help her deal with the discomfort. I will keep her in my prayers as well. "
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Reply #4 - 07/28/09  10:42am
" My son has them as well and he's 10, I have them so I understand a bit on how to help, though right now it doesn't do much good. First thing I did was go to the doctor for him, she has since refered us on to a place called CASA, where we actually meet next Thursday for his first appt with the Psych, they have a whole team to assess and assist both myself and my son, perhaps there is something like that in your area your dr could refer your daugther to should she need. "
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Reply #5 - 07/29/09  5:34am
" Wow, it's so hard. I've been dealing with panic for 5 years now, and I feel like there should be a support group for spouses and family members who know someone who is going through this.
For me, there really isn't anything anyone can do to make it better, but having someone with you is better than being alone. Even if she doesn't want to hold hands or cuddle, just tell her she'll be okay. Just be there for her, and try to be calm and breath.

Remember and tell her ( look at the clock if you have to) Panic atttacks only last for a bit....for most, 15-20 minutes max. I always look at the clock when it starts. It helps me stay focused on where I am.
My final bit of advice: realize that Panic attacks are an extremely personal thing. Even if you had one, you would not be expirienceing what your daughter is. It's different for each of us, that's why it's hard to understand. Hope this helped and didn't make you more worried, I feel we need to be honest about this disorder. Please let me know what else I can help you with, if
Chris "
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Reply #6 - 08/30/09  11:25am
" Ohhhh I as well with my 11yr old son. My case is that we have an extreme case of panic disorder/anxiety disorder/depression, that is genetic. And tough to see your kids go thru it. Lots of educating them techniques, and decifering what is just normal worries at that age, and what would be red flags, that you need to see the dr! if I can offer you any advice at all, it would be just to research, and read. Pass that info on to your daughter, be her teacher, and lots of reassurances that there IS HELP. THAT WILL WORK! Your dr will further direct you on the right track. My mum preached to her daughters basically that we should get over it, go for a long walk, and be thankful that we are not starving in Africa. Her approach failed, and still fails to this day! Hence, I am thankful to have gone thru it, and yet another lesson of how NOT to parent my children. I am 30, and just learning acceptance. I wish that there had been someone to tell me long ago that this is normal(for pd), and beyond my control. Please know supermom12, that you already ARE doing the right things, that appt will help begin the journey:) A good read, help and hope for your nerves, Claire Weeks) .......and HUGE kudos to you for going thru this storm with your daughter! "

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