Is it normal to feel spaced out after a panic attack?
A panic attack is simply high degree anxiety that is accompanied by a high degree stress response. Since stress responses tax the body, experiencing a high degree stress response can dramatically tax the body and therefore leave you feeling tired and spaced out after the attack has passed.
Moreover, many people become overly emotional during a panic attack and once the attack has subsided it is also common to feel emotionally and psychologically drained, which can lead to the feeling of being “spaced out.”
So yes, many people experience feeling spaced out after they've experienced a panic attack. Fortunately, this spaced out feeling generally fades as the body recovers from the stress of the attack. As you become more familiar with panic and less fearful of it, you’ll most likely notice that this “spaced out” feeling disappears as you better manage your anxiety. Therefore feeling spaced out afterward needn’t be a cause for concern.
Successfully addressing your anxiety issues will eliminate your struggle with anxiety, which will also eliminate panic attacks and feeling spaced out afterward.
The combination of good self-help information and working with an experienced anxiety disorder therapist, coach, or counselor is the most effective way to address anxiety and its many symptoms. Until the core causes of anxiety are addressed - we call these core causes the underlying factors of anxiety - a struggle with anxiety unwellness can return again and again. Dealing with the underlying factors of anxiety is the best way to address problematic anxiety.
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Authors: Jim Folk, Marilyn Folk, BScN. Last updated July 2016.