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Roo1234
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06 Aug 2022, 11:35 am

I have met several people who experience panic attacks. Though I have never witnessed one.
I asked my mother if she thought that I had ever had a panic attack and she said no.
Recently I have done some research and think I do have panic attacks I just internalize them all the time

Is there a potential that I am actually just having a melt down?

What does a panic attack feel/look like for you?



babybird
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06 Aug 2022, 12:09 pm

I've had panic attacks with ptsd nightmares. I've woke up in the night struggling to breathe.


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Twilightprincess
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06 Aug 2022, 12:15 pm

If you aren't sure if you've had a panic attack, you probably haven't had one. It could be just regular anxiety or something else.

Like babybird, I get panic attacks that are related to my PTSD. It's severe anxiety, with a fast heartbeat, feeling like you are going to lose your mind, difficulty breathing, etc. It would be really hard to completely internalize a panic attack because the symptoms are severe.

You could ask a psychiatrist or therapist about this, though.


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goatfish57
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06 Aug 2022, 1:19 pm

I started getting panic attacks after I recovered from COVID/BA1. It is like an anxiety attack on steroids and it really messes up my head. The attacks are less frequent now, more like severe anxiety. But, I get triggered easily and have tried very hard to keep the toxic people far away.


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Pteranomom
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06 Aug 2022, 6:08 pm

I had a panic attack a couple of days after the birth of my second child. I'd had a c-section and a couple when I woke up in bed, I was physically unable to sit up (and my baby was asleep on top of my chest!) I called for help, but no one heard me, so I started yelling louder, but still no one. That's when I had a panic attack and began screaming uncontrollably for help. Even when my husband rushed in and everything was ok I couldn't stop screaming. It was like this switch had been flipped in my head to "panic" and I couldn't turn It off. It took several minutes before I calmed down enough to tell him what was wrong.

Later I realized I could have just used my arms to reposition the baby and then push myself up. Oops.

Incidentally, after the birth of a child is one of the most common times for a panic attack because the amount of oxygen in a woman's blood goes down once she's no longer breathing for two, but sometimes the brain notices this and turns on the "hey, we're suffocating!" siren.



Dillogic
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06 Aug 2022, 8:41 pm

Roo1234 wrote:
What does a panic attack feel/look like for you?


Fight or flight. Impending doom. Muscle tension. Sweating. Shaking hands. Sometimes detached from myself. Time slows down. 10/10 anxiety.

They last for about 30 minutes or so. I get them daily, and have for around 20 years now. :| Initially thought to be panic disorder, but likely just from other stuff (that's what my psychiatrist and I figured in the end anyway).



Shoalinagent
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08 Aug 2022, 1:19 am

Roo1234 wrote:
What does a panic attack feel/look like for you?


First time I had one I was convinced I was dying of a heart attack and had somebody take me to the emergency room.
Started as shortness of breath, then my vision was impaired to the point it was like looking through a pinhole. Heart palpitations, chest cramps, and immense dizziness shortly followed. After several hours I was cleared to go home as they could find nothing which was more disheartening. This became the norm daily for several years until going on lexapro which stops it from getting out of control.

tl:dr - You would know with 100% certainty if you were having them.



Kyaegha
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09 Aug 2022, 5:39 pm

I have diagnosed panic disorder and chronic ptsd, and I also have asd meltdowns.
For me, they are different in where they originate.
Panic attacks tend to originate from an outside source for me, whereas meltdowns come from an internal, overwhelm place.
Panic attacks come on super sudden. My meltdowns build up slowly.
and panic attacks for me also involve a lot of dissociation, a total taking over of flee. i'm a runner during panic.
Meltdowns make me become small and tight, I ball up in a corner, to shut out things.
and meltdowns make me react towards myself- as in I bang my head or hit my legs. Panic attacks don't do this to me- panic attacks for me are all about getting away, running away, just away.
Both do cause dizziness for me.