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what physical feelings of anxiety do you get?

Community Member

hey there, what physical symptoms of anxiety do you experience?

I often feel very alone in my experience of having physical chest (what I think are heart) spasms and was wanting to create a space for everyone to list their physical feelings that come hand in hand with anxiety so we can all feel less alone.

hope everyone is well.

797 Replies 797

Community Member

Hi Annabay

With my anxiety my most physical symptoms were nausea/dry reaching which lasted for months. ..mostly mornings. ..also phantom smells.

Community Member
Hey there, hope you’re well.
I too would have heart palpitations.. little did I know that this was anxiety/panic at the time though.
Other physical manifestations of Anxiety for myself is my feet ‘tingle’ or ‘itch’ I can’t explain it, but it’s the most uncomfortable feeling on the soles of my feet - makes me want to sand paper them off! Nausea and those are probably the most common.. the worst I had was not being able to physically eat or drink for 2 days.. but that has only happened once.

Hi there

Hope your well. Yes the nausea and tummy symptoms have been awful for me over several months l feel it mostly mornings. Even though its better it has not completely gone yet.

Community Champion
Community Champion

Me... I had sweaty palms. racing heart, lump in the throat feeling, constant sighing, and sleep problems.

Now... the medication helps greatly, but I will still get that racing heart (muted), lump in the throat feeling (occasionally), constant sighing

Community Member
When I feel that I get an anxiety attack my heart starts racing, I feel shaky and my voice changes. I also get physical pain too.

Community Member
Yes the constant signing l do it often. Im on no meds l did try some in the beginning but didnt work for me ..l guess l wasnt on them very long. I take anti nausea pills if it gets to much for me.Any advice on this morning nausea.

Community Member

For me the best way I can describe the feeling is feeling like I’m drowning. I feel like my heart is being squished and I struggle to get enough air into my lungs. Having PTSD from an assault I also find that once I become stressed or anxious I get really bad pain in my legs and in my tummy. Like someone is getting a steamroller and driving it straight over the top of me. And once I’m In that state I find it so hard to get back on track. My counselor always talks to me about staying in my window of tolerance. So when I start to feel like I’m beginning to drown I need to think fast and try my best to get back on track. But of course when I try and do that I become more anxious about the fact that I’m becoming anxious. Crazy isn’t it.
I do find now though that I try and start grounding myself without even realizing I’m doing it. And I’ve got a few little sayings or quotes that I keep with me, or in my handbag when I’m out work for example, and I try and read these and remind myself that I am safe, I am brave, and I can get through this.

hope that helps someone in someway! Life can be cruel. But look at us, leaning on each other for support and guidance. No matter how hard your past, present or future is, someone somewhere will always have your back and that’s something we all should try and remember.

ah I’m babbling now, so sorry!

Champion Alumni
Champion Alumni

Hi Annabay....excellent and very helpful thread topic by the way 🙂

I used to have chronic anxiety that has reduced (a lot) with frequent ongoing treatment (yay!)

  • tight breathing (chest muscles tightening.. restricting our ability to breath) Scary but harmless
  • sweaty palms.....
  • sleep problems....waking up at silly hours....(oversensitised/adrenaline release/common anxiety)
  • night sweats..cold sweats
  • dizzyness
  • diarrhea (sorry.... but our digestive system is the most sympathetic to anxiety issues)
  • heart palpitations....scary at first until I knew it was only adrenaline and way too much caffeine

These are all very common symptoms of various levels of anxiety...They are harmless yet a good indicator that we may have slow down and make some changes...The counseling and cognitive therapy is priceless 🙂

So much great support here too!

Great thread topic annabay....I hope some of this is helpful to anyone on or off the forums


Community Member
Never been able to fully describe it but I always know I'm about to descend into full panic when I start to feel like my teeth are shaking. Like a tingling in my gums.