Passing Out From Panic Attacks?
I use to be very scared of passing out from a panic attack. One of the symptoms of my anxiety is that it can make me very dizzy. When I started thinking about it too much it got worse and with that came a new fear for me…
…the fear of just losing control and falling backwards. This fear started making my life more and more difficult. I noticed it got worse in open places, where I was far from anything I could grab and hold on to. I started to get these very strong, intense moments of panic attacks that threw my balance off…
…and it even made me physically “counteract” by looking like someone trying to balance up on the roof of a tall building. I have in later years realized that it was not just the fear of passing out in itself that scared me.
I later figured that what I really was afraid of was:
- Just losing control somehow, in front of people, making a fool out of myself
- Showing my weakest side by fainting from fear
- Being laughed at so much that I would get forever rejected as a “clown”…not being welcome in the “tribe” anymore. (subconsciously somewhere deep inside the reptilian part of my brain…it was not my logical thought process)
Can you pass out from panic attacks?
When I had my trumpet gigs, playing in front of people with a band or as a solo I would always have to sit down and play, or if I had to be standing I arranged for a chair to be right behind me…
…you know, should I suddenly pass out and fall backwards. But did it ever happen? Did I ever pass out or even fall?
Nope! Never! It is possible to pass out from panic attacks but it is extremely uncommon.
When stress and anxiety hits we get an increase in heart rate and and increase in our blood pressure. This is actually the opposite of what’s happening when we pass out. When fainting our blood pressure drops…
…So even if we are hammered by negative thoughts and absolute dread, fearing that we will pass out from the panic at any moment, it does not happen….
…or rather, it is not very likely because it is very uncommon.
Now with that said our mind is incredible powerful and we can take the placebo effect as an example. If the mind thinks of something with all its power, then yes, it can actually manifest all kinds of things to happen in our bodies. So the honest answer is that we can indeed pass out from a panic attack but it will probably never happen.
Will I pass out from a panic attack? It’s kind of sad thinking about it, really…
How such a thought can make many years of our lives absolutely filled with horror (in my own case my best years). That such a big part of our waking time is consumed by a thought of something that could potentially happen to us, however unlikely, are robbing our lives from the joy we deserve to have.
As I grew older and started gathering more tools, tricks and knowledge to use in my battle against the anxiety demons, things slowly started to turning around for me. And I’m no longer afraid of passing out from panic attacks.
I still get anxiety attacks, from time to time, today (as a middle aged man) but nowadays I, most of the times, can quickly get them under control. The anxiety I get today is often as a result from me having done something “stupid” like not taking good care of me by drinking a little bit to much alcohol or eating a lot of sugar, drinking a lot of coffee etc.
If you are scared of passing out from panic attacks then I have a few suggestions for you:
- Try to keep your shoulders down. Do not tense and lift them.
- Breathe slowly through your nose
- Do not resist the anxiety!
Tensing and raising the shoulders disturbs the blood flow to our brains making us much more prone to dizziness. This is a defense mechanism that we come equipped with to protect our head. (Think of a scared cat shrugging) In addition to this we have sensitive nerves in our neck area that can be impacted by us tensing the neck muscles.
With a little practising it is possible to keep the shoulders down even when having high levels of anxiety. I talk from experience here, trust me on this!
When breathing slowly thorough your nose it is almost impossible to pass out from a panic attack. It may not seem like this, in the midst of your anxiety, but deep nasal breathing prevents the anxiety to spike up to its fullest strength.
This is what causes “normal anxiety” to become panic attacks in the first place. When we feel a panic attack coming on, opening our arms and letting it come, will often make the anxiety go away completely…
…on the other hand if we try to push it away, which is the most common response, THIS is where the anxiety turns into a panic attack.
I know I know, it’s easier said than done but it is actually very doable with some practice. I explain more on this subject in the video below.
The road to overcoming anxiety and panic attacks can be long but it does not have to be
If you are suffering from anxiety, panic attacks and thoughts like “am I passing out from panic attack ?” it is important that you never give up but instead keep trying different things. Keep gathering tools and tricks to have in your anxiety toolbox…
…or more and more weapons to use in the war against you anxiety demons, if that sounds better 🙂
I recommend you go and read our article “natural ways to deal with anxiety” as it is LOADED with a lot of valuable tools on how you can manage, or potentially even eliminate your anxiety altogether. If you are interested you can
click here to go read that article.
Anxiety and panic attacks are not fun and there is no reason we should let it rob our lives from joy and also no reason we should be passing out from panic attacks. Just like I have overcome my panic attacks, I’m confident that you will overcome yours. I wish you all the best and here’s to you having an anxiety free life.
P.S. Also take a look at our article “Best anti anxiety supplements“ as I have, from my own experiences in combination with a lot of research, gathered, what i consider to be, the best anti anxiety supplements on a list. I also write about why they work as well as give recommendations on where to find the best brands. If you are interested you can
click here to find that article.
Thank you for reading the article “passing out from panic attacks”!
Stay strong, and much love!