Was this a panic attack or dehydration?

So I work full time as a gardener at a botanical garden, meaning I work outside all day. So today this morning around 11:30, we were planting several plants and all of a sudden I get lightheaded and felt like fainting. I also drank coffee this morning which usually I don't(I drink coffee like once in 6 months) and everytime I drink coffee I get anxious. I also didn't drink anything in the morning. My mouth felt dry, my hands were shaking and heart was slightly pounding. Everytime I am standing I feel like I'm gonna faint but feel better when I sit. I also thought I was gonna throw up. So thinking that what I was experiencing was dehydration, I drank tons of water but did not feel better immediately. Then lunch time came and I sat for like 30 minutes and gradually started feeling better.

So could someone tell me if what I was experiencing dehydration or a panic attack(not full blown, but the stage right before it)? I do suffer from anxiety and take sertraline btw but I have been skipping does every other day(25mg) because I won't be able to get another until the end of the month.

9 Replies

  • Hi Heruga, it certainly sounds like dehydration. Having coffee dehydrated you more, as well as working outside. Drinking a lot of water helps but takes a little while to work. I am hoping you had something to eat as well on your lunch break. Hope you are feeling better this afternoon. Take care.

  • Yea well I had salad with ham. But I am still feeling slightly lightheaded still. Its been hours since this happened and I drank plenty of water too. Why am I still feeling this way? Are you sure this is not anxiety? Also, I have never had any dehydration in my life before, I almost always go through the morning without fluid and I'm always fine.

  • It could have been many things! You would need to check with your GP for sure, just in case something else is happening here.

    Possibly dehydration or the stimulating effects of caffeine. Once you get light-headed, it does take a little time to settle down.

    Did you have any breakfast?

    It could also have been the affects of the medication dosage changes; dizziness is a side effect of any sudden dosage changes. And consider the affect of caffeine on your dosage "day off."

  • All I had for breakfast was yogurt and some rasberries, I usually never eat that much in the morning. And I thought I have been feeling fine now but I feel some uneasiness in my head again right now, I was trying to take a nap but couldn't cuz of lightheadedness. So the dehydration symptoms are still in effect even after drinking all that water?

  • I doubt that it's dehydration anymore. I have yogurt for breakfast everyday as well and you did have lunch plus a lot of water. I would say if you have anxiety issues if may be that. But, I would call your doctor and run it by him especially if this is something new.

  • Yea I also just peed and the color was light meaning I am hydrated. Well I also think this is anxiety but I never experienced this type of anxiety before. Its like a constant feeling of nervousness and I'm slightly short on breath and occasional feelings of dizziness in my head. I feel like going to a doctor is just a waste. There can be sooo many things that triggered this and I see people in the internet posting the same symptoms as me and they had all sorts of tests and all were negative. I really hope that this is just anxiety

  • You know Heruga, I was looking back at your posts from 4 months ago where you expressed a lot of the concerns you had today. You say you have suffered from anxiety since age 10, so you have been diagnosed? You know your body better than anyone else and if you feel it's anxiety then you need to do some relaxation techniques and deep breathing. It sounds like something triggered that event this morning. I know we all hate doctors and taking meds but it is not a waste of time when we don't have any relief. As long as you keep hoping that this is anxiety, those symptoms will stay with you.

  • Well I rather have something that I know(anxiety) rather than having some terrible illness. And yea I have been diagnosed with OCD and anxiety and minor depression but OCD is gone and now all I have is anxiety still. Nothing triggered it, I was just digging holes for the plants and all of a sudden I started feeling weak and lightheaded. I think its the coffee caffeine that triggered it. I had coffee around 7 though, and lightheadedness came around 11:30. I am feeling better now, its like on and off. I'm going to try to get a good nights sleep and see tomorrow morning. I also called the pharmacy today and fortunately they had a refill on hold and they were able to let that go and my zoloft will be ready by tomorrow. But thanks for your help :) Really appreciate helping me with all my threads.

  • See you GP to get a better diagnosis as there are too many variables.

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