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Dealing with the psychological effects of asthma

I'm sorry, I seem to be posting a lot just recently!! It's just I have no-one else around me with asthma who I can chat to, and find discussing things with people who can relate, helps.

I woke up last night for a second time around 4am, I could feel tightness creeping from my back, over my shoulders and on to my chest. As the tightness increased I felt as though a boulder was sat on my chest and as it got bigger I could feel my airways closing up and was finding it harder and harder to get air in and out. The problem is while all this was happening I felt frozen to the spot and couldn't/didn't grab my inhaler until I realised I desperately needed it, it's as though it all happened so quick that I didn't have time to react. I've never had this happen before so it's concerned me a bit. When I did get my inhaler, I reacted quite quickly and I only needed 6 or so puffs to get back to breathing normally. I just wondered if anyone has experienced anything similar? How do you get over things that scare you like that? My breathing isn't too bad today now so I'm not to worried but I'm confused as to why I didn't seem to react at the time.

Sorry I think I'm just waffling now, and actually feel better for having written it down.

4 Replies

Hey Butterfly

I empathise with you completely! I tend to check this forum several times a day because everyone here is so supportive and knows exactly what you're going through.

Although I can't offer you any medical advice, I too had quite a bad night, and woke up a couple of times with asthma symptoms. They weren't as extreme as yours, but it can be a really frightening experience, especially when you've only just woken up. I always have an inhaler within reaching distance and even then it seems to take forever to actually get the medicine into my lungs.

Hopefully you won't have to experience anything like this again, and that you're starting to feel less anxious about the experience.



Thank you Ely, I appreciate the support! Sorry you had a rough night too, let hope we have a better night tonight!! My inhaler is usually in the drawer next to me but I think tonight I'll have it under my pillow! Thanks again xxx


Butterfly I think with it being the middle of the night it probably took your mind a bit oif time to catch up with your body and to work out what was happening! Glad the ventolin kicked in quickly for you. If it helps at all, the 3 attacks I had a fortnight ago started with back tightness, like a kind of heavy, pressing feeling which became painful and spread to my chest . Felt as if someone was sitting on my back . after the breathing eased up with loads of multidosing , my back did ease but this unpleasant niggle remained for quite some time. Sounds kind of similar to what you describe. I don't really know anything different tho , I've always had back tightness with asthma but those were my first 3 major attacks I'd had so don't have previous ones to compare too but hope might help anyway. Hope you have a better night tonight xx


Yeah I do hope I was just kind of half asleep, I don't react well to having broken sleep lol. It's just I could feel myself going from breathing normally, to mc Donald straw to normal straw and when I got to juice box straw I was like ' woah I can't breathe!', the tightness by this point was encasing my lungs. I dread to think what my peak flow was by this point, after 6 or so (wasn't really counting at this point!) Puffs of ventolin it was only 45%. I don't think it's ever been that low before. I just how it doesn't play on my mind tonight, I'm hoping I'm just that tired I'll get straight to sleep.


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