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Anxiety and Depression Support
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Feeling overwhelmed

Lately I've been feeling like I cant breathe -figuratively- and a sense of drowning on land. This may sound odd but its the best way I can possibly explain it. It's the feeling of needing to breathe and feel weightless but instead constantly feeling heaving with an everlasting sinking feeling. I'm not sure if I'm depressed as this has been going on for a couple of months now? I'm dealing with University final semester so I'm stressed but previous to this I've been having a lack of appetite, restlessness, nervousness, and honestly half the time i think im either going to rage out of my brain at people or just breakdown and cry.

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That sounds similar to when I have anxiety attacks. You should talk to someone in health services, normally universities have mental health services available for free. Good luck!

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Dear Lost Wanderer,

I agree that there is an anxiety issue. Look at the stress you are under finishing your last semester. I think it is great that you recognize and can articulate the way you have responded to the stress. (BTW, congrats on your upcoming graduation!)

The feeling of breathlessness is scary; as an RN I have seen many people w/ this issue. I also (rarely) get panic attacks and feel like I am having a heart attack. There is a tendency during a panic attack to breath shallow and fast, this can cause the lightheadedness feeling you are having. What helps me is to control my breathing during an attack. This should be practiced frequently when you are feeling OK; that way you have a 'secret weapon' for those nasty attacks. What I practice (and have done this w/ patients) is to breath in on a SLOW count of five, really filling your lungs; pause a second or two, then breath out on the same SLOW count of five. Really try to exhale all the way to the last of your breath, (pull in your stomach); then repeat this for about 3 -5 minutes. Counting is said in your head, not out loud. I also visualize breathing in healing energy and exhaling out all my stress... that really helps me and I then feel more in control of my body.

Regular exercise, preferably something aerobic also can help. I would also suggest seeing a health practitioner. Anxiety can make you feel down, too. Try to get out w/ friends or pursue an interest outside of your university studies... maybe dance, art, yoga? Whatever interests you.

I hope you feel better soon.

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Thank you for this I really appreciate it! It's good to know that there are other people out there who understand what I'm going through

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