Scared to drive, because of a previous rollover. Panic attacks.

Discussion in 'Experienced Truckers' Advice' started by Scaredsparkles, Oct 15, 2021.

  1. Scaredsparkles

    Scaredsparkles Bobtail Member

    Oct 15, 2021
    Hello, I was in a rollover accident 3 months ago and this month I started driving a dump truck again for first time since the accident. I was doing fine until this morning I had a full panic attack and had to call a supervisor to come get me. I feel like a failure. I love driving the trucks and being in new situations I just don't know what triggered this episode. I felt like I was falling but the truck wasn't moving. It's been more than five hours now and I'm still scared. Anyone know a safe way to help with this fear.
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  3. tscottme

    tscottme Road Train Member

    Jul 25, 2008
    Nashville, TN
    That sounds terrible. Good luck driver.
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  4. Mototom

    Mototom Road Train Member

    May 7, 2019
    What scared you man?
    Look at it like this, unless it's at 100mph or off a cliff it ain't likely to kill you.
    So the second worst thing loosing your job. Already happened and over with I assume.

    Wear your seat belt. Attach a seatbelt cutter to it and roll on buddy. It's hard to brain out a panic attack but it's possible.

    I had one at random a bit ago and it was rough. I had to remember mind over matter "Stop is Jim you're being ####ing stupid it's just your imagination" over and over and over and over and over and over again like a mantra till my heart rate settled then it was "see ####### I told ya so" you may have to do something different. There isn't a one size fits all
  5. lester

    lester Road Train Member

    Jan 2, 2012
    NW, Iowa
    Some people really must have a lot to live for. I always say if this is gonna kill me please just make it fast
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  6. pumpkinishere

    pumpkinishere Medium Load Member

    Apr 21, 2021
    My 2 cents……. Slow down take deep breathe and say a little pray. Ask for god to keep you safe out here on the road.

    not talking from experience but have heard from my niece once panic attacks start happening they reoccur. My advice is talk to you physician.
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  7. ProfessionalNoticer

    ProfessionalNoticer Road Train Member

    Apr 25, 2021
    Anxiety and panic attacks are no fun at all. Alcohol and Xanax are your friends. You might want to consider not driving for a while though. I have a close friend who has to get a ride to work because he has panic attacks when doing it himself. He has no problem driving anywhere else. But his drive to work sends him to the hospital every time.
  8. pumpkinishere

    pumpkinishere Medium Load Member

    Apr 21, 2021
    I had a guy run into the back of my trailer and it killed the guy. Cops said he may of had a heart attack or fell asleep. I had the fear of people to close to me for awhile but I would just take deep breathes and eventually I got over the fear of someone running into me. A serious accident changes you but I promise you you can get over it. Just take it easy and don’t try to overcome it all at once.
  9. DUNE-T

    DUNE-T Road Train Member

    May 10, 2015
    Detroit, MI
    Lol I would be suggesting physical exercise, meditation, reading, but I would never suggest anybody to get on drugs. Tell him to get on cocaine, that would relax him even better
  10. Cdubb

    Cdubb Light Load Member

    Mar 22, 2015

    If you are comfortable with it and it’s an option seriously consider speaking with a therapist about this, this is gonna be above most everyone’s pay grade here. I think you came back too soon and didn’t realize how much it effected you. There’s no shame in that.

    If it was me I would just sit in one for awhile just hang out and see what happens. Then I’d volunteer to move trucks around the yard empty at first just be in one again and maybe ride along as a passenger in time to see if you have a panic attack again. Ideally if you consider any of the other drivers in your fleet friends of yours I would try and ride with them so you are more at ease being with a friend. If you are doing good by then I would start driving on the road again. For me the way to conquer fear is to face it directly but I have never had an experience like yours, so like it it, it’s above my pay grade. For the love of god don’t self medicate and don’t turn to booze for support. Speak with a professional and then proceed slowly.
  11. Accidental Trucker

    Accidental Trucker Road Train Member

    Jun 4, 2015
    I’m not qualified to speak to the mental health aspects of this, but I have a son who has to deal with anxiety on a daily basis, so I am familiar with his “tricks of the trade” if you will.

    As mentioned by @DUNE-T, there is a very large physical component to it. Excercise is huge. Cutting down on screen time (particularly tv shows, movies and games) is big. Nutrition is big. Medical studies show that 1,000 mg of fish oil a day is about as effective as an anti anxiety prescription. Eat real food, three times a day. Cut the processed stuff out, and make sure you eat fish regularly (McFish sandwich doesn’t count, sorry).

    I’m told meditation is very good. I’ve never been able to sit still long enough to get anywhere with it.

    Good luck.
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