How to tell diff between asthma and panic attack?

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by TerryJ2, Sep 4, 2013.

  1. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    difficult child has had trouble breathing lately. Today, his second day back to school, he said his chest was tight and he had to put his head down on his desk, and his sinuses were tight, and the feeling came and went all day but mostly, it stayed constant. He said he just can't breathe.
    husband thinks it's allergies and stress together, but not asthma.
    I gave difficult child some decongestants and 1/2 a clonidine about 10 min. ago.
    Any ideas?
  2. StressedM0mma

    StressedM0mma Active Member

    Sounds like a combination of allergies and anxiety to me. I know easy child has been miserable with allergies this fall. Hopefully he will be feeling better soon.
  3. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    It's possible to have extremely mild asthma as an underlying condition... you may not even know he has it. And then... add both allergies and a panic attack... and that can "trigger" an asthma attack on top of it all...
  4. jal

    jal Member

    Anxiety from school is my first thought.
  5. LittleDudesMom

    LittleDudesMom Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Knowing your difficult child's history, my first thought would be school anxiety. But, it's worth thinking back to see if you can remember any patterns in the spring or fall with breathing/allergy issues.

  6. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Asthma is closely related to emotions, it can come on as a result of an emotional state. it runs in my family. How is he today? It may be worth it to have him checked out by a specialist. There are varying degrees of asthma. For instance, I have what is called 'exercise induced asthma' which is only an issue when I work out or run/walk, etc. Otherwise it's a non issue.
  7. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Thank you all! I am leaning toward allergies and anxiety as well, but will have him checked out at some point. He does have a pattern of this sort of thing in the fall. In fact, he often missed the first few days of school with-major headaches, stomach aches and colds. He's gotten better over the years.
  8. StressedM0mma

    StressedM0mma Active Member

    Was today any better? I hope once the routine settles in, your difficult child won't be so stressed, and the allergies will clam down too.
  9. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Nope. Last night he talked my ear off for about 1/2 hr. He went into extreme detail about his breathing, his emotions, moods, etc. I told him it sounds a bit like bipolar with rapid cycling, but he said most of his ups and downs can be pinpointed to exact circumstances. (He should be a lawyer.) We'll keep an eye on it.
    I feel badly for him. It's so frustrating. I mean, if I have a stuffy nose, I take a decongestant. End of story. For him, it's a maze.
  10. Rabbit

    Rabbit Member

    If these attacks are happening in school maybe the school nurse could listen to his lungs. He may need an albertal puffer. Asthma can be serious.
  11. Lothlorien

    Lothlorien Active Member Staff Member

    I think anxiety can cause the asthma to get worse. Missy had a mild asthma attack a couple of weeks ago, but her anxiety causeed it to get out of control. It was a little scary because I couldn't get her to calm down.