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Old 04-26-2009, 10:36 AM   #1
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Red face Woke up from sleep gasping for air and couldn't breath... Help please!!

I had by far the most scary attack happen last night. We are staying at my parents house while my husband is in England for work and I'm having remodeling done at my house. I was up talking to my mom until after midnight about my anxiety and health fears and fears of dying. I went upstairs after that and crawled in bed and fell asleep. Well about 45 minutes later I shot straight out of bed, gasping for air and felt like I was tight in the upper part of my chest and couldn't breath. It was terrible I was beyond scared and then I started to feel like I couldn't swallow either. I had my mom rush me to the hospital and they did an EKG said it couldn't look any more perfect and ran bloodwork which also came back great. My vitals were good while I was there so they told me to try to relax, gave me an Ativan and said it was most likely anxiety over a bad dream. I do not remember dreaming at all. Can that be normal to wake up that way due to anxiety and has it happened to anyone here? Thank you for all your help.

 
Old 04-26-2009, 12:02 PM   #2
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Re: Woke up from sleep gasping for air and couldn't breath... Help please!!

It does sound like an anxiety attack - whether it was a dream, from talking about your anxiety previously that night, or another cause. If this were to continue, I would check with a sleep disorder specialist to see if you need testing. I have awoken with gasping in the past, but it turned out I needed to use a CPAP to sleep. Your heart can be part of the equation in that since sometimes the heart will change its pattern. I truly think your's is primarily an anxiety attack.

If you don't know the cause of your anxiety, or if you need anxiety management skills, maybe you could speak to a counselor
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Old 04-26-2009, 01:38 PM   #3
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Re: Woke up from sleep gasping for air and couldn't breath... Help please!!

You poor thing, I am so sorry that you seemed to have had an attack. I really feel for you. I have suffered with this for most of my adult life. You aren't imagining things. I too have had many trips to the ER for this only to find out everything was ok. Sounds like you have some stress going on in your life. Even good changes like a new house, remodeling, new job, marriage etc...are big changes and your mind is still at work even when you are resting. Sometimes we carry things over into the dream world. It releases that adenaline and we really get going. You WILL be ok. I found that buying some tapes on dealing with anxiety really changed my way of thinking. I can at least manage scary feelings when they start coming on. Also seeing a counselor etc....whatever it takes. You may want to watch your caffeine intake for awhile too. That helps to take the edge off. Hang in there hon!

 
Old 04-27-2009, 02:47 PM   #4
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Re: Woke up from sleep gasping for air and couldn't breath... Help please!!

Have you looked into sleep apnea? i get that, but more likely to be an anxiety attack.

 
Old 04-29-2009, 10:24 AM   #5
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Re: Woke up from sleep gasping for air and couldn't breath... Help please!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by TEdds83 View Post
You poor thing, I am so sorry that you seemed to have had an attack. I really feel for you. I have suffered with this for most of my adult life. You aren't imagining things. I too have had many trips to the ER for this only to find out everything was ok. Sounds like you have some stress going on in your life. Even good changes like a new house, remodeling, new job, marriage etc...are big changes and your mind is still at work even when you are resting. Sometimes we carry things over into the dream world. It releases that adenaline and we really get going. You WILL be ok. I found that buying some tapes on dealing with anxiety really changed my way of thinking. I can at least manage scary feelings when they start coming on. Also seeing a counselor etc....whatever it takes. You may want to watch your caffeine intake for awhile too. That helps to take the edge off. Hang in there hon!
Do you mean you've suffered from anxiety most of your adult life or the gasping for air in the middle of sleep? I went to my family doctor and a cardiologist and if my holter monitor comes back fine then the cardiologist said he thinks that it's safe to say I'm healthy and don't need to worry about anything being wrong with my heart. I hope he's right and I'm fine, it just freaks me out that I feel so off a lot of the time. I hope I can start to enjoy things again.

 
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