Please read I'm scaring myself! Catching m... - Anxiety Support

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Please read I'm scaring myself! Catching my breath:(


I've just had this really weird moment where I felt like I wasn't taking in enough oxygen, literally liked couldn't breathe it's really freaked me out now I'm laying in bed scared to death it will happen again and I won't be able to breathe! Surely this isn't normal 

10 Replies

Hi there 

I'm guessing that despite feeling like you weren't taking enough oxygen and your breathing was affected that you were still able to breath.  After all, you were able to take a little time to put up your post.

I often get clients that say they feel like they are struggling for breath or that their heart is beating out of their chest.

These are pretty common symptoms of anxiety as, when we are anxious, we go into flight or fight mode.  It's caused by release of adrenaline and norepinephrine from the medulla of the adrenal glands. The release is triggered by acetylcholine released from preganglionic sympathetic nerves. These catecholamine hormones facilitate immediate physical reactions.  That's all a bit wordy and medical, but ultimately when we think or imagine a scary situation the release causes us to breathe more quickly to oxygenate the blood and power the major muscle groups ready for that "fight" we envisage we are going into.

Very often it's the right response at the wrong time.  

We no longer have to face sabre toothed tigers in day to day life, but as humans we have these hard wired responses to protect us.  Unfortunately, we don't always distinguish between real threats and perceived threats.  Often our mind takes over and we start catastrophising about situations and fear the worst.  This can lead to us experience the flight or flight response, and with all that adrenaline running around it can make it very difficult to get back to sleep.  The fact that we worry it will happen again, keeps us on edge, increasing the difficulty to relax and get to sleep. 

Practising mindfulness and breathing exercises can be of use.  There are plenty of resources online.  Take time to try some out and see what one works best for you.

Take care.     

in reply to Lions13

I don't see how I'm in a panicky state if I'm fast asleep

in reply to JLou

We can be panicky at anytime. 

We can wake up because we dream we are falling. Were not but our mind is a powerful tool. 

If we think a certain way, we will feel and experience certain emotions. 

Don't stress! Calm down... your feelings of worry is what will eventually contribute to a next anxiety episode. Think of it this way - anxiety brings about weird physical symptoms, but it's not that dreadful. Once the episode is over, you will start feeling better. Nothing bad is going to happen!! So instead of worrying go and take a bath, a walk, watch some comedies, read a book... do anything that will help you de-stress your mind and not think about your physical symptoms. 

Hello,  when you start feeling it coming on immediately take control. It's one of the most difficult things you will ever do but believe me it works.  Just relax and say to yourself " this will pass soon and I am fine and in control". If you do enough your body will respond positively and this will subside.  Good luck and Good Health

in reply to Edatis

I totally agree with you

But how do you deal with life circumstances that bring you stress every day? How do you deal with them ?:(

in reply to Rhea31

You try to minimize your stress the most you can don't worry so much and acknowledge stress will bring you anxiety so you handle it with humility and patience and breathe don't forget to breathe.  

I know what you mean. I feel breathless but don't always feel like I am in a state of panic. This triggers my mind to wonder is it actually anxiety or am I trying to pass off something more serious to anxiety. How do you know what's real? 

you go to the doctor

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