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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    How do I handle anxiety after a traumatic experience?

    I suffered my first attack in May 2011 3 months after I had a baby boy with heart problems which had to be corrected with major heart surgery. This was a really stressful time but I managed to stay strong throughout the process. but then BAM it hit me 3 months later when everything was fine an my son was healthy. I'm still on zoloft and have bad days. I just wish it would go away because I HAVE NOTHING TO PANIC ABOUT!
  • Find a professional to answer your question

  • Gareth Hobbs


    Located in Albany and Mt Barker in Western Australia, Brief Intervention Counselling (BIC) provides confidential, affordable and time limited psychological interventions for depression, anxiety and … View Profile

    I am glad to hear that your son is ok!

    Sometimes, understandably, people fear a recurrence of a traumatic experience, or even the recurrence of another panic attack.

    If it is ok, I would like to answer this question by providing reading material and other resources.

    This handout will provide you with information about acute stress and posttraumatic stress, including treatment options:

    This chapter, called Coping with Panic Attacks, contains some useful information:

    This audio recording is me running through a progressive muscle relaxation exercise. I suspect you will find this exercise very helpful:

  • Dianne Zebic

    Counsellor, Psychotherapist

    Dianne Zebic has retired as of 31/01/2015 View Profile

    I think it would be a good idea to chat to your GP, and check if your medication ‘Zoloft’, has any side effects, which could be causing you concerns or wether or medication needs to be adjusted.

    Secondly it would be best to speak to a counsellor or psychologist who can work out why your anxiety is there now and whats causing it, however inform your GP of any treatment interventions you decide to take.

    I feel in your mind you are worrying in the sub-concious mind ‘What if this happends again’……..
    Its these negative thoughts which are linked to your negative experience is enough to cause you anxiety. However this is only my assumption as I dont know for sure if these are the thoughts going through your mind as I have not done a thorough assessment about your thought processes.

    Try to rest and reduce your stress, and do some walking or other form of exercise each day or you can try Yoga, but consult with your GP first.

    Luckily your son is healthy now and there is nothing to really worry about, I know many parents who went through similar situations and their children are all ok now after many years of worry.

    However if you feel concerned still speak to your child's specialist and ask their professional opinion on any concerns your having as this will hopefully give you peace of mind, knowing your child is well and healthy.

  • Stephen Lockley


    Stephen will soon be returning from lecturing in the UK on his eclectic style of hypnotherapy and its effectiveness on clients with anxiety and depression. View Profile

    Have you considered using hypnotherapy to help you? As part of a treatment team I work with medical professionals using hypnotherapy. Predominantly my work is with people who have been medically diagnosed suffering with anxiety and depression. My clients report after their sessions that they feel a great change within themselves. Firstly I install a tool that helps the client quell the panic attack. Then we work on the cause of the anxiety. Once this is completed we move onto dealing with the cause and reprograming the subconscious. As with any therapy, different people can experience different degrees of change. Whatever therapies you choose use a therapist that you feel comfortable with.

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