I am very tired right now. My anxiety and panic attack always keep coming back when i lying down and seated. Especially when im inside a car. I will he panicking and sometimes i cannot take it so i rush to A&E. Please help me.
Thank you for sharing with us how you feel on this platform - I commend you for your courage to be so vulnerable and open with us.
I’m so sorry that you’ve been experiencing anxious moments and panic attacks frequently especially when you’re lying down and seated in a car. It must be really exhausting to keep wondering when the attacks will come and it sounds like it becomes overwhelming for you to the point of admitting yourself to A&E.
I am wondering (& let’s process this together)
- What are some of the triggers that you have noticed for yourself?
- Does being in a confined space trigger the anxiety?
- What kind of thoughts do you usually have before the panic attacks surface?
It would be best if you could also try to process this anxiety and panic attacks with a mental health professional or a counsellor, who can provide strategies and tools to help you manage these moments. They can also help you to understand the triggers and teach you ways to prevent the triggers from happening too. If you are unsure who to talk to, you could try out these online options for starters:
- Limitless : Talk To Someone - Limitless
- CPH chat : https://www.cphonlinecounselling.sg/hc/en-us
- IMH CHAT : https://www.imh.com.sg/CHAT/Pages/default.aspx
- Ec2: (http://ec2.sg/) : https://fycs.org/ec2-sg
From there, you could share with them your experiences and hopefully they will be able to guide you through the next steps for managing your anxiety as well.
I would also like to encourage you to try a few of these resources to keep yourself calm in case you feel overwhelmed:
Deep Breathing: Practice deep breathing techniques to help calm your nerves in the moment. Taking slow, deep breaths can reduce physical symptoms of anxiety. You can practice deep breathing here: Mental Support & Wellbeing Resources in Singapore to Improve Your Mental Health | mindline.sg
Progressive Exposure: Gradually expose yourself to the anxiety-provoking situations that make you uncomfortable, starting with less intimidating scenarios and working your way up. For example, if sitting in the car for more than 10 minutes gives you anxiety, try sitting down for 2 or 3 minutes first with the door open, then when you feel more confident, you can try 2-3 minutes with the door closed but with the windows open. And you can progressively expose yourself further to eventually sitting in the car with everything close (i.e. when car is moving). If you can go through that with more exposure, you get better at managing your feelings too
Positive Self-Talk: Challenge negative thoughts and replace them with more positive and realistic ones. For example, instead of thinking “I can’t breathe in here,” try reframing it to “I can open the window anytime for a breath of fresh air, I’m safe in the car now.” along with the deep breathing techniques in #1. You can also try out this tool to counter negative thoughts: Mental Support & Wellbeing Resources in Singapore to Improve Your Mental Health | mindline.sg
Meditation: You can also try meditating whenever you feel like the panic attacks are coming, as it will help you to stay regulated: Meditation : Mental Support & Wellbeing Resources in Singapore to Improve Your Mental Health | mindline.sg
Finally, I would highly encourage you to seek support from a mental health professional and find ways to expand your window of tolerance for the specific car situation, as well as get more ideas and understanding about your triggers for panic attacks.
Last but not least, remember that you are not alone in this - there are many people who also experience panic attacks and anxiety constantly because of various reasons. The most important thing is not to give up and keep filling up your ‘toolbox’ to manage the anxiety!
Let us know if this helps in any way and update us about how you’re coping! Please take care!