Sudden anxiety and sleep trouble

So for the last couple of nights, I have had a lot of trouble sleeping because of anxiety and panic attacks when trying to sleep. I have never experienced any serious anxiety problems previously, and I am unsure why this is happening to me now. Because of the attacks, I pulled an all-nighter one night ago, and since then, I have been having a lot of attacks and more worries throughout the day, as well as heart palpitations randomly. I am unsure of what to do.


First thing to do is ask your doctor for a therapy referral. There’s a feedback loop in which anxiety causes sleep loss and sleep loss causes anxiety. When a person is exhausted, the body may produce spikes of adrenalin just to keep it moving. In turn, that causes more anxiety. Heart palpitations is what makes me think that may be what is happening to you.

If you’re up to it, physical exercise - maybe 20 minutes of aerobic activity daily may help restore your regular sleep habits. Such exercise can calm the mind and also produce “feel good” hormones, leading to what’s often called the “runner’s high.”

It’s best to seek help for what you’re experiencing sooner rather than later, because it can lead to other health issues.

Please check back and let us know how you’re doing.


Hey @BenR,

Thank you so much for reaching out here and sharing about your experience with anxiety. You’ve described this vicious cycle so very well: the anxiety sinking in, then the lack of sleep, then the anxiety increased because of the lack of sleep, then the anxiety because of the anxiety… it’s such a tough place to be in, and I’m sorry you’ve been dealing with it, friend.

As @Wings said, sleep deprivation in itself can have such a huge impact on our level of anxiety, and as you mentioned pulling an all-nighter it may be completely related to the increase of panic attacks and worries during the day. I know that personally, as an anxious bean, if I don’t sleep properly I’m going to struggle through the day, feeling on edge and nervous about pretty much everything. It makes it harder for my mind to stop overthinking everything and creating all kinds of scenarios…

My heart goes out to you and I’d fully encourage to consider talking about it with your general practitioner at first. A first step to break down this cycle from continuing would be to focus on getting some proper sleep, and getting some help for it – either through natural medications or formal meds. Once you’ll feel more rested, it will be more easier to cope with your anxiety overall.

Now, this won’t solve entirely the problem besides your anxiety, and you may need some external help such as talking to a professional about it. Is it something you’ve been regularly experiencing? Is it completely new? Do you think it is related to specific events that happened or are happening in your life? To identify the cause of what has been stressing you and triggering your anxiety lately may help.

Last but not least, I’d definitely encourage you to create some new and relaxing routines when you go to bed. Make it a time that is to be cherished. Get some warm bath and a soothing warm beverage before going to sleep (if that’s your thing). Try to disconnect from socials/online activity and read a book, journal, stretch… whatever makes you feel good in your body. Some soothing lights in your bedroom, cleaned sheets that smell good can also help make the bedtime more welcoming and comforting. All the things that can soothe you physically and stimulate your sense in a positive way.

In the meantime, I’d love to hear more about you/your life context, if you’d be willing to share of course. Even just letting all the thoughts that have been weighing on you lately can help just a little bit. Know that you are not alone, you are not crazy and you are not broken. You got this. <3


Hey Ben!

Anxiety as a whole is never fun, especially the panic attack inducing kind. I have had these things in my life also. I really useful tool for me when I see it coming early enough is breathing techniques of any kind. Breath control.

I have an idea of why your symptoms increased, but could be completely wrong. Sometimes you can start to have anxiety about a scenario that was caused previously by your anxiety. Such as, having worse anxiety about sleep, because your anxiety caused you to miss a night of sleep. On top of just being sleep deprived, which is never fun for the body. If you get your sleep schedule back to normal it might help everything a lot. I’m no professional though.

I think, especially if you think you are having heart palpitations, you should try to get into a doctor about it. The heart is definitely a part of the body you need to make sure is functioning well. If you are comfortable with telling them about the anxiety and that. I’m sure they would be willing to try to refer you to someone about that also.

Regardless I hope you start to feel some relief! Thanks for sharing with us. - Thrice


I really appreciate the kind words from everyone. The last 24 hours have been better. My girlfriend was also on a trip for a while and I think that might have something to do with it since Im usually not alone very often. Sometimes being by myself can be positive, but since all of this happened it was messing with my headspace pretty negatively. I definitely plan to make an appointment with a doctor about it very soon. I’m trying to get back on my normal schedule as of now so I hope that can help me aswell.


Unfortunatley my anxiety has been acting up again for some reason which caused me to miss another full nights sleep. I went to the doctor this morning and was perscribed some zopiclone for sleeping, but I have been stressed all day that they wont work. Its been a long day and I was told only to take them before sleep so I’ve been having more anxiety because of this. Does anyone have any experience with pills like these?