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What helps you with chest pain?

Discussion in 'Anxiety, Panic & Hypervigilance' started by Harietta, Feb 27, 2018.

  1. Harietta

    Harietta Guest

    Hey all! I'm going on day five of some annoyingly persistent chest pain, tightness, squeezing, etc., with occasional panic and flashbacks. I'm not worried it's anything other than PTSD symptoms--had a very similar experience a few months ago and a full chest/heart/lungs work up came back totally clean. I just want it to feel at least a little better. I tried massage, that was not a great plan since it stressed me out more (live and learn, lol). What helps you with PTSD-related chest pain? Especially interested in anything easy to do at home, but would love to hear any ideas.
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  3. Friday

    Friday Raise Hell Moderator

    Competing senses. Hot showers, cold drinks. Cold swims, hot drinks. That kind of thing.

    Stacking up full body & point sensory things that conflict, because sensory neurons have a maximum load capacity. Trauma surgeons do it sometimes with pain, when there aren’t pain meds around, because pain nerves work the same way. Only so much information can flow to the brain at the same time, so you can numb certain kinds of pain, your brain literally stops feeling it, because the nerves transmitting the info are log jammed. <<< This is ALSO one of the foundarions of self harm, and why it’s so hard for people to stop / it becomes addictive. >>> Doing it with sensory stuff, instead of pain? Just as effective but waaaaaaaaaaay healthier.

    The only real downside is that it takes longer and you have to get more nerves involved. Hence why I like to do the shower/drink combo. Full body + the conflict = same area as where the razor clawed vice that is pretending to be my heart is located.

    One of the other benefits of water is that it washes away the stink (pheromones, even if you can’t smell them consciously) of your own anxiety/fear/rage, which helps backing off from those things easier. Failing total immersion, strong smells can also help mask those scents, and make it easier to calm.

    Something useful to know when playing with your nerves is that fingertips and your lips/tip of the tongue have some of the most. If you have rosary beads or sandalwood prayer beads or similar that you can roll between your finger tips, whilst talking or drinking through a straw or similar? Also helps.
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2018
    Bibine, TexCat, stp2012 and 1 other person like this.
  4. Calendula

    Calendula New Member

    I get those chest pains often. I usually just allow myself to take things slow when it happens. I like to lay down on my back (or sit if I'm in public/ sometimes I lock myself in a bathroom if I need to be alone) and take some deep breaths. I usually try to visualize void (space, ocean, etc.) which is easier than thinking of "nothing".

    Also, I do some journaling. I usually just scribble and/or write quickly in big letters my feelings/thoughts/emotions/whatever comes to my mind.

    I also like to eat or drink something that I really enjoy. I have some sodas that I keep in storage for when the chest pains are really persistent. A cookie or my favourite fruit also works. You could also play with your sense of smell and light some candles. Just make sure your environment brings you some type of joy.

    I hope this helps and that you are able to get over those chest pains soon!
    Bibine likes this.
  5. Bibine

    Bibine New Member

    There's an EFT video by Brad Yates on youtube for constricted breathing. I sometimes do that (or other EFT things).

    Or some yoga nidra (deep relaxation). Those are my two little helpers ;)
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 12, 2018 at 7:51 AM
  6. Sweetleaf

    Sweetleaf Was Tibergrace

    I can second the distracting sensory input stuff that @Friday said. I personally do great with overpoweringly strong smells. I often use lavender essential oil on my wrists and neck in copious amounts. The ritual of it has become a calming thing of its own. I put on lip stuff, then scented lotion on my hands and arms, sometimes more of my body, and then I put on the lavender oil.

    Measured breathing helps me too, and I'll check my pulse/stress level on my phone periodically - seeing my pulse and stress go down on my phone helps me calm down, which is kind of funny. Knowing my stress is lowering helps my stress lower.

    I also will try to distract myself with activities that require a lot of my focus/attention. Difficult video games have helped me. Sometimes distractions can be useless, though.
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