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Author Topic: Feeling I stopped breathing while sleeping  (Read 223 times)

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Offline VickieLL1966

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Feeling I stopped breathing while sleeping
« on: August 21, 2014, 05:53:11 PM »
This feeling happened to me a month or so ago. I'd be sleeping at night or during a nap and suddenly I wake up startled with a feeling that I had just very briefly stopped breathing.  I did not wake up gasping for air, just while I was asleep I felt that sensation that I had stopped. When it woke me up, I just took a deep breath and went back to sleep.  I had this again today while taking a nap.  I say over a month and half time period, this has happened maybe 6 times.  I had an episode last night and then one today while napping.  Now I am scared of sleep apnea or that I'm actually stopped breathing but that it's going to happen and I won't wake up.  Anyone else experience this or know what is causing it??  Thank you :)
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Offline Braveheart

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Re: Feeling I stopped breathing while sleeping
« Reply #1 on: August 21, 2014, 06:17:54 PM »
I know exactly how you feel. I suffer from this quite a lot and it's not very pleasant.

I put my problems down to possible hyperventilation, due to me breathing out my mouth a lot because of my nose always being blocked when I lay down.

This has been happening to me for a good couple of years now. Probably about time I went to see the nose doc.





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Offline e77

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Re: Feeling I stopped breathing while sleeping
« Reply #2 on: August 21, 2014, 06:23:22 PM »
I get that every now and then and it scares me too.  I like to believe that my body's fight/ flight response protects me from not breathing too long by kicking in the adrenaline, if that is indeed what is going on.
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Offline Never-Quit

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Re: Feeling I stopped breathing while sleeping
« Reply #3 on: August 21, 2014, 06:28:52 PM »
It is possible, it is something you can check with your doctor, on your next visit.  This is one test, I do encourage - since most people are unaware they may have undiagnosed "Sleep Apnea" - like myself.

In my case, I was unaware of how often I would stop breathing during my sleep, until my wife would wake me up, because It appeared that I stopped breathing.

One of the things to mention to your doctor is this symptom, they can quickly diagnose if you indeed have 'sleep apnea' - which I found out in my case, was not associated with Panic Disorder, GAD, OCD or any other anxiety issue which I had already resolved.

Sleep Apnea Test - is an overnight test, in which they make sure that your brain is receiving enough oxygen during your sleep, since I snored a lot - my oxygen level to my brain was very low, and the sleeping diagnostic tools showed that I would wake up 18 times in 6 hours, without me ever knowing, which robs you of sleep and makes you very tired, never feeling rested.

Even if it is Sleep Apnea, THERE IS NO REASON TO BE ALARMED, You're not going to die or stop breathing, (I had it for 30 years - and it was never diagnosed, until 2005). 

Just as part of your stay healthy program, I would have my doctor run this test, just to rule it out, and if you have it - they have easy remedies for it, which will lead to a much healthier and better sleep for your overall health.   :action-smiley-065:


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Never, never, never give up. -Winston Churchill

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Offline Never-Quit

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Re: Feeling I stopped breathing while sleeping
« Reply #4 on: August 21, 2014, 06:41:23 PM »
Just wanted to add...

If it is not Sleep Apnea, it is very likely - to be another favorite problem, I had - called "Nocturnal Panic Attacks" - which is a part of  the "Panic Disorder" problem.

This is a possibility, "If you couldn't breathe, and woke up gasping for air, and felt you were going to die" - which is very different than simple "Sleep Apnea"

From your description It sounds more like possible "Sleep Apnea" ...  If it continues, then I would speak with my Dr. about getting tested...

 :action-smiley-065:


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Never, never, never give up. -Winston Churchill

“You can’t live a perfect day without doing something for someone who will never be able to repay you."   ~ John Wooden

Offline VickieLL1966

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Re: Feeling I stopped breathing while sleeping
« Reply #5 on: August 21, 2014, 07:28:20 PM »
Thank you to everyone for your replies.  I was really hoping it would be from anxiety and not sleep apnea. :(  I don't have health insurance to see a doctor for a diagnosis so I guess I am going to have to deal with it.  My health anxiety is going to get a lot worse now with sleep apnea hanging over my head.  Between GAD and my health anxiety there is just no relief ever.  Hope everyone has a great night
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Offline Never-Quit

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Re: Feeling I stopped breathing while sleeping
« Reply #6 on: August 21, 2014, 09:32:33 PM »
I was really hoping it would be from anxiety and not sleep apnea. :(  I don't have health insurance to see a doctor for a diagnosis so I guess I am going to have to deal with it.  My health anxiety is going to get a lot worse now with sleep apnea hanging over my head. 

Just wanted to add, that Sleep Apnea cannot be claimed, unless you get officially diagnosed  :angry-smiley-034:, since you have only experienced this only 6 times, does not mean you have Sleep Apnea!, it could very well be just a rough month of anxiety...

Until tested positively with a Sleep Apnea test - I would assume that in your case ( "over a month and half time period, this has happened maybe 6 times") is much more likely coming from anxiety. 

Again, this is nothing to worry about, when you get health insurance, this might be something you can have checked out.

Keep in mind, in my case, my sleep apnea was occurring every night for years (actually decades) .  And, I did just fine  :action-smiley-065:

And So Will You  :yes:

This is just another temporary "bump in the road" that you will also OVERCOME! :grinning-smiley-003:

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Never, never, never give up. -Winston Churchill

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Offline Lunatone

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Re: Feeling I stopped breathing while sleeping
« Reply #7 on: August 22, 2014, 04:37:27 AM »
considering that feeling short of breath is a common anxiety symptom, I wouldnt' worry all too much. especially if your anxiety disorder is relatively new. It may well be that you're waking up for some other reason, believing yourself to be out of breath when you are not.
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Offline Rob783

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Re: Feeling I stopped breathing while sleeping
« Reply #8 on: August 22, 2014, 10:20:49 AM »
I use to wake up like that till I was diagnosed with Sleep Apnea.  Sleeping with a CPAP machine practically ended my night attacks.  You very well may not have it.  Do you snore? Do you take sleeping pills or benzos before bed? Snoring doesn't always equal sleep apnea but its a sign. Sedatives relax the throat muscles causing apnea.
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Offline VickieLL1966

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Re: Feeling I stopped breathing while sleeping
« Reply #9 on: August 22, 2014, 11:45:03 AM »
Hi Never, Luna and Rob,  your posts made me feel better this morning.  It didn't happen last night and was thankful for that.  And I always have that nagging anxiety in my head all the time.  I remembered last night, that about 15 years ago, after my breakdown, that I would do the same exact thing.  So, with your all's reassuring words, I'm going to chalk this up as anxiety. I have been taking 5mg of melatonin nightly for about two weeks now and it does make me sleep really hard.  thank you all again for making me smile :)  hugs to everyone and have a great day :)
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Offline Never-Quit

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Re: Feeling I stopped breathing while sleeping
« Reply #10 on: August 22, 2014, 12:29:24 PM »
Glad to hear you are feeling better!

You are an overcomer! - and I know you will defeat this anxiety on your way to a bright and happy future :action-smiley-065:
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Never, never, never give up. -Winston Churchill

“You can’t live a perfect day without doing something for someone who will never be able to repay you."   ~ John Wooden

Offline VickieLL1966

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Re: Feeling I stopped breathing while sleeping
« Reply #11 on: August 22, 2014, 01:19:13 PM »
awww ty Never   :happy0151:  my mama raised me to be a fighter and I have to rather or not I want too, because it's what she would want and expect of me.  She sacrificed way too much in her life for me to give up on anything
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