Big wave of anxiety...really scared

I've been dealing with anxiety for a while but only this year did it start to get serious, I've had 2 panic attacks and a 3rd one just last night which is what I'm here to talk about. Everything was normal last night until I started to go to bed and it felt like my cheek was falling asleep, I freaked out thinking that I was having a stroke or blood was being cut off to my brain (kind of ridiculous assumptions but anxiety can trick you into thinking everything). I googled my symptoms because the feeling didn't go away, even when I say up and moved around. It's afternoon now and my cheeks still feel numb, and now a little bit under my chin and on my scalp. It's not pins and needles, and I can feel it if it pinch it, but it doesn't feel normal. It feels like after you hit your face in something or accidentally whack yourself - like that numbness. If I distract myself I can almost forget that it's there. But googling my symptoms has just freaked me out even more, there are all sorts of things going through my head like diabetes (I am fit and in shape but have been overdoing the sugar for the past month due to emotional eating) and stroke and heart attack and I'm so scared. My heart is beating so fast and I'm all alone. I just want everything to go back to how it was yesterday when I didn't have any problems. It happened so suddenly and I can't stop worry about it and thinking about it. I have never seen anyone for my anxiety and I could really use some advice to calm myself down. I'm so scared! Could the feeling be due to my anxiety or do I have another condition? Do I need to go to the hospital? Any tips for controlling anxiety? Please help, I'm sorry to bother you all but this is unbearable, I feel so anxious.


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11 Replies

  • dear Anxious2445, I feel your fear over what is happening. You have no documented proof right now that this is nothing more than anxiety. Your mind is building this up to being something catastrophic happening. The what if is taking over. Before you run to the hospital, be sure to try some relaxing methods. After all why put yourself through the additional anxiety of being in the emergency room. Being alone right now may be scary but actually it is a good time for you to have the peace and quiet you so need. Find a comfortable chair with a pillow behind your back. Plant your feet on the floor and place your hands right side up, on your upper legs. Close your eyes and start to breath in slowly from deep down in the belly. Count for 4 and purse your lips and slowly breath out for the count of 6. Repeat as often as it takes you to feel some peace and calm. If you have a meditation tape, you can play that as well or go on YouTube and pick out a relaxation/meditation tape that you can listen to while you do the deep breathing. Try this for at least 10 minutes. Keep us updated on additional support needed. Use the relaxation/breathing as often as you feel necessary until you feel very relaxed. It may very well get rid of some of your symptoms. Hold our hands, we are here if you need us. xx

  • Thank you Agora1 for your help and words of comfort! I have been able to relax a little. I tried the breathing techniques and they helped my heart rate, but not the anxious thoughts running through my head. I went for a run for a little while and it helped lessen my anxious thoughts a little, and I couldn't feel the numbness on my face so I wasn't fixated on it. Now, as I have stopped running, I am more aware of the numbness. I think I can rule out heart attack or stroke, it's the diabetes I'm most worried about. Some of my uncles have diabetes and although my blood showed normal glucose levels last time I was at the doctor's, and it takes a long time for diabetes to affect the nerves, I'm so scared that it might be the cause especially since I've been eating so much sugar lately. I'm still a teenager and in good shape, so even the risks of that are low, but I. Ant stop thinking about it! My dad will be home later tonight but my mom is away for a few days. I'm thinking that if it doesn't go away by the time she gets back I will go to the doctor and get it checked out. For now I'm going to try to minimize my sugar/carb intake and see if that helps. I just cannot get my mind to stop racing, I need to be doing things or having a conversation, when I am alone with my thoughts is when I get most anxious. Any advice on how to help keep my thoughts away from the numbness? And any idea what might be causing it? Could anxiety cause these symptoms? Do you think this is serious? Sorry for all of the questions I am just very scared right now and I don't want to alarm my parents by telling them.

  • Also, the numbness is centered near the apples of my cheeks - not over my whole face.

  • You know that could very well be from your bite being a little off to the anxiety causing you to grind your teeth. Just a thought.

  • Thank you, for all of the advice and suggestions - I really appreciate it. You have helped me feel so much better! I'm feeling calmer now, just worried about getting to sleep but once I fall asleep I think I'll be fine. No change in the feeling in my cheeks, but I realized it could be sinus related as well - they feel a bit swollen. I also noticed that I don't really notice it when I'm occupied, so I think I'm getting overly fixated on it because I think it could be something bad. Sorry for the long replies, it helps me to type everything out. I will make an update if anything changes. Thank you again!

  • Hi dear, Some of the best ways to keep your anxious thoughts at bay is to get into doing something around the house. As a teen, you could probably go into your bedroom drawers. I always find interesting things and a lot of things I no longer need. As well as closets. Rearranging your clothes according to color or season. In other words, anything that requires you to think about something else.

    I think you are feeling the effects of your mom being gone and dad working late. Being young is on your side. The chances of a stroke are slim. As for diabetes, since you had a normal test reading last time, having another one done is not an emergency. I don't think minimizing your sugar/carb intake has all that much to do with your symptoms except that a lot of sugar could feed into the anxiety. Hopefully when your dad comes home you can have a little talk with him explaining your concerns. Even if he just says, you're okay and gives you a hug, that should make you feel better. You have a plan that if it's not gone by the time your mother gets back, you can set up an appointment with the doctor then. I don't see any harm done in waiting. Sending you a hug x

  • Great advise from agora. You said you didn't really notice the numbness when your mind is occupied. That's always reassuring, a lot of my symptoms and thoughts are when I'm sat doing nothing, I find they lessen if I'm busy doing other things. Try to relax, if your done cleaning then how about some fun, gaming, reading, whatever you enjoy. Doing fun things will lift your mood and take your mind off the symptoms and the anxious thoughts x

  • Thank you for your thoughts, I am trying to keep busy today to keep my mind off it. I do feel a bit better as I was able to get to sleep, and when I woke up I could hardly notice anything at all (I have to wonder if maybe my mind is tricking me) and I also feel a bit congested, which means it could have just been my sinuses being swollen/full (gross sorry). I'm trying not to worry about it, if it persists I will go to a doctor but I feel better now that I know I'm not in any immediate danger. If I was going to have a heart attack or stroke it would have happened by now. Anxiety is a strange, strange thing...

  • I have sinus problems too,and when there blocked it does make your face feel numb and weird.ive had the same problems and the same bad thoughts.i always assume the worst.i hope this helps.and hope you get to feeling better soon!

  • Hi, I thought I'd leave an update. My sinuses/cheeks feel absolutely normal now, so all would be well except for the fact that my left arm has been feeling warm on and off today. I had just gotten my mind off of my face only to worry about this problem - I read that it can be a common symptom of anxiety, but I also read that it could be a blood clot that could go to my lungs and kill me. Now I'm terrified and stressed all over again! Since it's on and off feeling warm, and no pain, I want to say it's not a clot and it's just anxiety. I don't want to tell my parents, but if it is something serious then I don't want to hold off on treating it. Thoughts anyone? Just when I thought everything was back to normal..

  • If you live in a place with universal healthcare or can afford to go to the emergency room, go right now. They are thorough and well trained and will be able to tell you in a matter of hours what is causing this symptom, and when you know, you will feel better. I know how scary this is, I've been where you are. Most likely you're having symptoms of anxiety, but imagine how much better you would feel to find out within a couple hours that it definitely IS anxiety and that the rest of your body is absolutely fine. If the emergency room is too scary, make a doc appt. In the meantime, I'd like to suggest a technique called mindfulness or grounding. Pick a thing to look at in the room you're in right now, and really try to notice everything about it. Shape, size, color, where you think it came from and how it came to be in that room. Then pick another item to think about, then expand to the whole room gradually until you find yourself in the moment of only HERE and NOW. A different technique is a meditation. Take your time with this one. Close your eyes and imagine your ears slowly growing very very large, and then listen for everything you can hear outside the room you're in. after a while, imagine your ears becoming a little smaller, and listen to all the sounds you can hear in the room you're in. Then imagine your ears have shrunk back to normal size and listen to the sounds in your body. Especially take your time with that last one. This exercise calms the fight or flight response and can center you and make you feel more safe. I hope some of this helps.

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