Anxiety and Panic Attacks

19 January 2017

I'm here today to open your eyes to the different types of anxiety/panic attacks people experience with some personal experiences (one of my favourite things). There are so many different types of panic attacks and they come in all shapes and sizes, they can be minor, like a small wave washing up on the shore. Or they could really exhaust you and can hit you like a big red, double-Decker bus!


Here are peoples experiences with different panic attacks...
Erin -
For me, panic attacks creep up. I might just start to feel a little removed from myself, and cold inside. I guess that's the adrenaline. By the time I realise it's happening it's too late and it'll wash over me like a wave I just have to ride out. At the start it would panic me more that I was having an experience I couldn't control, but as I've become more used to them I now know it's something I just have to let happen if it's going to. Realising this helps it pass more quickly, knowing what's happening and accepting it. I can breathe, focus and am left quite weak and shaky afterwards. And even though I'm wiped out, I can often carry on with my day - which has been helpful if it's happened during working hours! The worse experience I've had with an attack was when I lost my peripheral vision in one eye, the side of my face went numb from the chin up, and also my arm! It was pretty scary but thanks to Google I found out that this does sometimes happen as part of an attack. I did NOT enjoy that - it's frightening what the brain can do to the body without you having a conscious clue. Over the years I've found that simply acknowledging to myself that I have panic attacks has definitely reduced the number I have, which is pretty awesome!

Zoe -
When I have a panic attack my heart races and I start to hyperventilate.  I often have shooting pains in my arm and palpitations.  It's also not uncommon for me to have a slight nosebleed.  I often shake too.

 Irene -
My panic attacks usually start with waves of anxiety, followed by terrible need to cry. My eyes tear up before I even realise what is going on and that's usually a sign that a panic attack is coming. Then my mind starts racing so quickly that nothing people say to me makes sense, that usually makes me panic even more because of the lack of control I have on what is going on. I always try really hard to breathe properly and fail, that's when I know I need to sit down and focus on my breathing, make my pulse slow down and wait until it's over. I can hardly explain what goes on inside my head, really, it's almost all a blur when it's over.

 Holly -
I first started getting panic attacks when I was 15 years old and they progressively got worse as I got older. Symptoms for me include, uncontrollable shaking, sweating - hot and cold, chest pains, difficulty breathing, shooting thoughts - rapid and random thoughts but cannot always determine what they are which usually causes more panic and fear of dying. It's a very uncomfortable and distressing situation. I don't always get all of the symptoms above during panic attacks but with some of the worse ones I do. Panic attacks can be brought on randomly when seemingly nothing has happened. I used to get them while sitting in some of my favourite classes at school.

 My personal panic attack experience- 
When I get in a state of worry and anxiety I will shake uncontrollably and it looks as if I am having a seizure. It looks like I'm shivering but its my muscles tensing up to the point of the shaking. My jaw will clench itself together to the point where I can only speak by moving my lips. When I get into an angry panic attack I will begin hyperventilating, but not short breaths, deep long breaths. Really struggling to regulate my breathing in a state of crying, panic and worry. The more I struggle to breathe the more I'm panicking and it's a viscous circle that takes all of my energy to try and break out of. 

I hope after reading these you get more of an understanding about the different way in which anxiety and panic affects people and everyone experiences it differently. If you have experienced anything else that we haven't mentioned above, feel free to let me know in the comments!

Also check out those linked blogs next to each girlie who helped me out! Thank you guys! 

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