I hadn't ever googled this until after I solved the problem for myself this month. Just registered to share in case it would help anyone. God knows how much it affected me over the years.
Drinking alcohol to the point where I have a hangover always resulted in me having near attacks or actual panic attacks ~24hrs later (i.e. the night after the night out). It has got worse over the years and this New Year's just gone was too much.
For over a decade, I have been eating well, I'm fit and active, working, happy etc etc. - it's just at the end of a hung-over day that it would all go wrong for me. Still the panic effects worsened.
I thought I'd try a different angle.
When I was a kid, I was tested for cholinesterase deficiency after a close relative had complications under anaesthesia. I have low cholinesterase activity. This means that my parasympathetic nervous system works a bit like a dripping/faulty faucet in that messages keep on dripping through - or even starting up of their own accord from a little too much dripping causing a flow in the next nerve down. The upshot is that when I make adrenaline, I over-produce and, and end up stressed. When I drink and after, there's more adrenaline.
The official medical line on cholinesterase deficiency is that it has zero impact on your life. It simply ain't so. My close relative, by the way, has revealed to me that they suffer similarly when drinking, and this is foremost in their mind when offered a drink which they usually decline.
Plan A was to find a way to boost my cholinesterase activity but I can't (but, boy did I find many ways to make it worse e.g. potatoes, tomatoes - so-called cholinesterase innhibitors) so I turned my attention to the adrenaline. If I'm over-producing and then becoming panicky from it, what can I do?
Simple. Fifty milligrams (50mg) Vitamin B3 on a full stomach. I didn't know anything about Vit B3 until just a couple of weeks ago. People take it as a supplement for some reason and there's this thing called the 'niacin flush'. Vitamin B3 is niacin. People advise getting around the risk of the flush (the flush feels like sunburn and makes you red for about 10 minutes, no big deal) by taking a different form of Vitamin B3. Unfortunately, that alternative is not going to help me because I need the adrenaline-preventing variety which is nicotinic acid (don't worry: not nicotene!) The no-flush variety is niacinamide, by the way.
50mg nicotinic acid / niacin / vitamin B3 and make sure it's the type which does not advertise itself as "flush safe".
To avoid the risk of a flush, do the following overkill method: - 1. have a 300mg aspirin before food (if you're ok with aspirin) 2. eat something relatively substantial (thin soup or a lettuce leaf won't cut it) 3. atfer you've had your meal, take 50mg niacin
One hour later it's busy mopping up the precursor chemicals your body might otherwise use to make adrenaline. This gives your system space to clean itself up.
Worked like absolute magic for me. I googled hangover panic attack this morning and was appalled to see the number of people out there who have this kind of problem. I'm not saying everyone has low cholinesterase activity, but niacin worked magic on me. I worried I had some kind of drinking-related nervous malaise. It feels good to know that I don't.
50mg is enough. It's small enough that you can take it more than once in a day, which is good news. With food, of course. Plan your hangover around avoiding cholinesterase inhibitors and getting niacin down your throat when it feels like time.
I'm not going to stick around on the forum, but I have the thread set to email me with replies, so I will come back in that circumstance. Panic attacks are so frightening. Wish you all well, whatever your circumstances.