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Panic Attack during Exam

Community Member
I just had a massive panic attack while doing a university exam, I couldn't sit still or think properly at all and had to leave the exam. I'm on medication, I try breathing in but nothing seems to work. What should I do?
4 Replies 4

Community Champion
Community Champion

Hello a Dear BobbyOz,

I’m sorry you had a panic attack while doing your University exam...Exams can be very stressful as we want to do our best....

Deep breathing, counting your in and out breathes, is one way to calm yourself down during an anxiety attack...

The best thing we can do..,is to try as hard as you can by grounding yourself.....by looking around and trying hard to focus entirely on one object...What does it look like, feel like, what colour is it, what texture is it....etc,,,or if you can get outside..,look around you at nature, while listening to the sounds around you...feeling the weather...

Panic/anxiety attacks are horrible to go through...The best think is to distract our thoughts onto something else...I gave you a few suggestions to try...if you want to...no pressure....other things you could do to distract your thoughts away from your attack..is listening to music, singing along with it..,read a book....I was told once that our mind can only think of one thing at a time...that’s why distraction (focusing on something else when having a panic/anxiety attack)...can help...

If you feel up to it...search in the search bar...the title..”Grounding ourselves, what is it and how do we”....hopefully you’ll find something that might work for you in there..

My kindest thoughts and care dear BobbyOz..


Community Champion
Community Champion

Hi BobbyOz

Sounds like a really difficult situation, were you able to let your teacher know and complete the exam another time?

Reminding ourselves in these moments that we are safe is also helpful, in addition to deep breathing and focussing on external objects as Ggrand has suggested.

May I ask, if you are on medication does this mean you have spoken to a doctor before about anxiety or panic attacks?

Community Member
Yes I'm on two strong support medications but they never seem to work

Mark Z.
Community Champion
Community Champion

Hi BobbyOZ,

It was very easy for me to get panic in exams when I was at school. My experience was to do preparation, as much as possible. When you feel you know everything, when you have more sense of control, you feel less panic. Hope it works for you.