Re: Terrifying experience
Definitely sounds like a panic attack to me. As many people on this site can attest to, they suck. I've had many over the years and while I know I'm having one, I can never quite convince myself that it will pass and I'll be fine. The good news is, no one has ever died from a panic attack. The bad news is, you will most likely convince yourself that you are having a heart attack and plenty of people die from those.
My symptoms are usually the same each time but vary. I usually have about a minute warning before they hit. I usually feel very week, light headed, I start to shake and then the panic attack hits. In full blown attack mode, I feel sick to my stomach, I feel like I cannot breath, heart is racing, shaking, limbs will tingle, impending doom feeling (every time). Those are the basics. I have xanax and Klonopin but try not to take either.
Like you, I had a problem driving. Once I got on the highway, it was horrible. Same symptoms as you. At first I had no idea what was going on. Gradually I learned it was anxiety. These days, I rarely have any issues with driving
Also like you, I went to the hospital the first time I had a full blown panic attack. I honestly thought I was dying. By far, the scariest thing that has ever happened to me. I once got mugged at gunpoint and that does not even come close to the fear I experience during my first panic attack. Had all the tests done and everything came back fine.
I wish you luck in feeling better. I like this site as it gives me comfort to know that there are a lot of other people out there that are going through the same thing. Lean on these people, they are awesome!