Anxiety Support
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Waking up gasping for breath, just as i'm about to fall asleep

I am Benjamin Franklin, 23 yrs old. I went to bed last night and suddenly woke up gasping for breath. It was scary and it was literally as if i was getting no air into my lungs at all but immediately i woke up and sat on the bed, it all went away and i could breath again. Then i decided to go back to sleep, just as i was about to fall asleep, i started gasping for breath again. It happens just as i'm about to fall asleep. It makes me spend about 2-3 hrs struggling to get to sleep without waking up gasping for breath. And when i finally fall asleep, i do sleep well. someone help me. i don't know if this is sleep apnea or something else. Because i don't actually get to fall asleep that easily, It comes just as i am about falling to sleep. somebody help me please. Any ideas????????

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This has happened to me alot. I always looked it up and always says anxiety. But since I changed my diet it has not happened anymore (knock on wood). I at one point thought it was apnea as well. But hasn't happened in a while.

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yooh. Thanks, I'm curious, by diet you mean "what you eat" or "when you eat" ???

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I have fruits, vegetables lots of them. Not just greens I eat sweet potatoes, regular potatoes, I watch my salt. I stopped eating fast food and preprocessed foods. And I watch my sugar. I also cut off caffeine completely. I drink a lot of water. Whole wheat bread instead of white and turkey bacon instead of regular bacon, baked salmon. I just replaced my regular foods with healthier choices. I eat at my usual time. And I have felt better.

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I have experienced what you're describing a lot of times and it's a symptom of anxiety for me. For a while it happened every night and sometimes during the day I would feel as if I'm not getting enough air in my lungs. I got really scared that I would just stop breathing in my sleep. But the human body is built for survival and breathing is pretty much the strongest instinct we have. You will not stop breathing and if you can calm down the anxiety you feel when you wake up from half-sleep gasping for breath it won't bother you as much anymore. I still get the sensation sometimes in times when I am stressed, but I know that it is just my body's way of telling me that I'm anxious.

If you ever experience the other thing I described btw, the feeling that you're not breathing deep enough or not getting enough air in your lungs even though you're breathing, that's likely to be Hyperventilation. If you get the feeling, just hold your breath for about 15 seconds a couple of times or do some star jumps so the oxygen levels in your blood normalise again.

Wishing you all the best! X

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