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Mimishu1995's avatar

Am I having panic attack (time sensitive)?

Asked by Mimishu1995 (18126points) November 30th, 2014

I know this is stupid to ask a health question here instead of going to the doctor, but I don’t have much time now.

I have to sit for an exam shortly. Yesterday while I was perparing for a noon nap my heart beat fast all of a sudden. I also had an anxious feeling, like something bad was going to happen and I couldn’t rest. It lasted until my noon nap was over, for about an hour.

I thought it was over but then it came back again while I was reviewing things last night. This time it lasted much longer, for about 4 hours.

This morning as soon as I woke up it came back again, this time it was even accompanied by the lost of appetite and a light headache. I have tried everything from breathing deeply to distract myself for a while without success.

What is happening to me? Is this a panic attack or something else? I really have to get out of this mess so that I can take the exam.

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13 Answers

dxs's avatar

It sounds like you’re anxious. I get that a lot, too, especially for exams. The night before my Calculus I final I was so nervous that not only did I feel anxious, I spent the night until 2am doing problems from the book because I was so nervous. These exams seem to be really taking a toll on your life. Good luck—I wish you the best.

johnpowell's avatar

I have had my fair share of panic attacks. Generally, it feels like a fat person is sitting on my chest.

wildpotato's avatar

These do not sound like panic attacks to me. Panic attacks tend to involve sudden intolerable physical experiences such as rapid heartbeat and trouble breathing. People I have observed having panic attacks and who have told me how they felt afterward describe a feeling like having a heart attack and thinking they may be about to die or are going insane.

It sounds to me like you are experiencing severe anxiety, but not so much attacks. Headache and loss of appetite are common symptoms of general anxiety. Breathing deeply can help – try counting in for 4, hold for 8, exhale for 7. Listen to music that makes you calm. Take a bath. Go for a run. As you said, anything to distract yourself and change your body’s reactions for a while. If this is a continuing issue you might consider meeting with a psychiatrist for a little pharmaceutical help before exams.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

Hey you, how is your breathing? Do you feel like doom is coming.

jerv's avatar

Sounds like “mere” anxiety to me. Full-on panic attacks start there but keep going. When I get one, we’re talking hyperventilation, vision and/or hearing fading, and tremors (if not outright seizures).

Mimishu1995's avatar

@Adirondackwannabe I cough more often. I guess that’s the result of breath shortness. And yeah I do feel dreaded.

Aethelwine's avatar

A full-blown panic attack includes a combination of the following signs and symptoms:
Shortness of breath or hyperventilation.
Heart palpitations or a racing heart.
Chest pain or discomfort.
Trembling or shaking.
Choking feeling.
Feeling unreal or detached from your surroundings.

There’s no guessing about shortness of breath. You know when you can’t catch your breath.

Mimishu1995's avatar

@everyone Thanks for all your responses. Guess I got mixed up between “panic attack” and “anxiety”. The anxiety has cooled down a bit for now. The heart has calmed down though it still beats faster than usual.

cookieman's avatar

You’ll be okay. Today’s anxiety will pass.

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

I know this is stupid to ask a health question here instead of going to the doctor, but I don’t have much time now.
That is what 911 (or whatever emergency number you have) number is for, not trying to have cyber non-doctors tell you what is going on.

Aethelwine's avatar

It’s not stupid to ask Fluther for help with health questions.

ZEPHYRA's avatar

Keep an eye on the situation and if it happens again then get some medical advice. Sounds like anxiety and fatigue hit you a bit harder than usual. I hope you spend some time outdoors a bit and not always inside!

flo's avatar

Next time try to breath deeply and then exhale very very very slowly. Repeat until your heart beat becomes normal. I’m not an expert I just know who uses this system.

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