Unconciousness/Shutdowns/Fainting/Partial Shutdowns.

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Mountain Goat
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17 Aug 2019, 7:22 pm

The differences I get between partial shutdowns, shutdowns, fainting and unconciousness. These are all my experiences. Other peoples may vary.

First of all I am so glad to have experienced being knocked out by the NHS via a private specialist dentist who does NHS work... I would have never been able to share the experiences to know the differences if it was not for that occasion, and I no longer fear being knocked out via anisthetic.You don't feel a thing!

I will start with this. Unconciousness. (Being under anisthetic. I don't recall being fully unconcious in my life apart from this one event).
Now they injected me (I didn't look and hardly felt the needle as they numbed the skin with something first) and they said I would feel a strange feeling. I didn't. I woke up. All was done. I thought I was at home in bed and was thinking "I can hear two strange women talking. What are they doing in my bedroom?" HAHA! (One of my concerns which I never mentioned, is I can get turned on and sexual when asleep and I was concerned under anisthetic I would embariss myself, but nope. When you are knocked out... Nothing! Absolutely no ciousness. Nothing! Mind knows nothing. Mind does not think... Nothing!)

Fainting. This is a hard one for me. I can't tell the difference in feeling between fainting and partial shutdown and shutdown. I strongly believe that I may start to faint (Or do I go into shutdown as I can't handle needles or blood etc?) but it then turns into a shutdown. Why? Because coming out of a faint I need to be fussed over but coming out of a shutdown, fuss is the worst thing for me as I will go back into a shutdown or a partial shutdown. A faint I may go white, and the colour comes back when I pull out. A shutdown I will have clammy skin and will feel shaky... Different from shivering. I may shiver when coming out of a faint. The two are so similar but they are different. I will feel cold when fainting. I am sweating and hot in a shutdown or I am neither hot nor cold unless it is cold ourside...

Fringes of partial shutdown. I am getting days of this! I can get weeks of this if I hve been having several shutdowns in a day and have not been able to recover as I have not had a stress frew enviroment to enjoy. I feel weak, lack energy... Am percieved to be lazy. Often try to isolate myself or just take things easy. I struggle to do anything manual. I'm vunrrable to getting partial or even full shutdowns, though the sequence is, partial shutdown and if not dealt with, shutdown. I usually get fringes of, after going into a partial shutdown or a series of partial shutdowns and I don't get the fringes before a partial shutdown... (Though the fringes can last for a week or three depending on how stressful the enviroment is or has been?)

Partial shutdowns.
For me, I struggle to have enough energy to remain standing up. When I was in my teens I was convinced I was diabetic. I have had so many blood tests over the years! Nope. Definately not! I start to feel limp and shakey when I get it deeper, but an average partial shutdown for me is that it feels like I am starting to faint and need to lie down. Here is why I assumed it was diabetis.... I would try to drink or eat something sugary as I felt like I need energy. I feèl weak. If I am in work or doing something when a partial shutdown comes along, I can continue if I am not pushing myself too hard and have managed to remove myself from the cause, but every movement takes effort and my ballance is effected. To lift a bicycle feel like I'm lifting a motorcycle! It takes soo much effort! To walk feels like I am dragging heavy weights around my legs. Everything I do takes great effort. I try not to force myself and take it easy as if I am still able to stand (Lets say I am fighting through the effects as I am in a social setting so I want to avoid embarissment... I am endangering the next stage...

Deep partial shutdowns.
As above but I am lying on the floor unable to get up. I can force myself to move an arm if I have to, but I do not want anyone to talk to me, and if they do I am nasty in my replies, as I am doing anything to stop any communication. I am vunerable to having a full shutdown and will be doing all I can to avoid it. Usually by this stage any sugry foods like chocolate or cola to drink will have little effect as I have already gone past the stage of trying to feed my brain some energy. (Chocolate etc can delay a partial shutdown or lessen the effects, or speed up recovery but it does not always work. Often when I have had a series of partil shutdowns or being on the fringes, cola or chocolate has less effect or occasionally no effect). If I am coming out of a deep partil shutdown, for a while if people try to talk to me my hearing ... I can hear them speaking and hear every word in perfect English, but often my brain makes no sense of some of what is being said. I often ask for the person to repeat what they have said several times before I get it... (I have been known to pretend I understand so the person leaves me alone so I can recover, which can be dangerous. I may do this to avoid a full shutdown.

Full shutdown.
For me I am fortunate in that I don't believe these last that long. A partial shutdown can last as long as 30 minutes, but a full shutdown has always had a partial shutdown first and I habe first had a gradual decline (Can be a quick decline if I am lifting something heavy where I have no choice as I can't put it down when I need to so am trying to delay the shutdown process, and I am very likely to head from the fringes stage to the full shutdown stage if doing something strenuous, so while I am in the fringes stage, I try not to do anything which stresses my body or my mind.. I have brothers who need help there and then so can't avoid strenous work so am often on the floor going into shutdowns mid way! I am often accused of being lazy or faking them to get out of helping. Comments I habe to ignore to try to recover, as if I tried to argue back I would slip into a full shutdown... I feel it is unfair to make comments when I am at this stage!)
Now a full shutdown for me is where I have a loud meduim pitched tinitus noise where my eyesight starts to dim, and the tinitus sound lowers in pitch as if someone is turning a knob to lower the sound (Gradual but fast gradual as it takes just a few seconds if that) and my eyesite correspondingly dims until the sound is at its lowest point and I my eyesight is completely black. It is a scarey thing as my hearing also shuts off by this stage and my body is limp on the floor. You could pick my arm up and it will flop straight down on the floor again. I have on occasions had it where if you lift my leg up slightly it will stay there, which is strange as I don't feel like I have the strength or energy to do that! Doesn't do that often though. Usually I am just like a lump of jelly!
Now though I can be shut off from the outside world, I can still somehow feel a sense of my surroundings. I am NOT unconucious. I am just not able to hear or see or move etc. I must be thinking to knkw this as I also know it is horrible to be in this stage, and I will do anything if I could to get out of it or avoid this stage. I don't really habe much of a sense of time, but it feels like I am not long before the tinitus comes back and the pitch climbes back from very low to medium and my eyesight starts to come back online, and though my hearing may be distorted somwhow, it also returns... I then recover like I would in a partial shutdown, but I am vunerable for repeat partial shutdowns or even a full shutdown again, though I will do all I can to lie still to prevent a re-occurence.

Everyone is different. I can delay my shutdowns but it costs me as by delaying it usually means I go deeper into them. I can function mild non strenous duties when in a partial shutdown. If I am driving, (I rarely get partial shutdowns when driving) I can delay the effects for quite somw time to find somewhere to pull in. I can then be sat in the car but not able to walk or do much. When cycling, it is a bit more dramatic as it takes effort to cycle. I can be clinging onto the bike looking for somewhere to pull of the road and hide... I could manage to cycle half a mile by delaying the effects, but then when I pull in I can go to put my foot down to steady myself once I've stopped and I am down on the floor! I usually try to find a hedge or field I can lie down in so I have no one trying to ask me "Why are you lying on the floor?" I don't want communication as it delays recovery or brings me deeper into a partial or a full shutdown. I hope these descriptions make sense and may help someone understand.


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Edna3362
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17 Aug 2019, 9:00 pm

It takes me several hours of hard work and pressure to give me induced headache. But this isn't very unusual to many it seems.

Takes me whole day of intense environment and socializing without any accommodation or room for management to have a shutdown.

Delayed shutdowns? Had done it at least twice, held it for like over 5 to 15 hours. I could still communicate, but every movement and thought is harder. The longer, the worse the consequences.
It made me sick, left me without any layer of sensory defences and constant headaches for days.
All I had left was limited willpower, raw tolerance and stamina -- even went to work at those times and been snapping at everyone for almost every minute because all I felt is pain and confusion...


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Mountain Goat
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18 Aug 2019, 3:06 am

Oh no Edna. What you get seems horrible.
For me a shutdown is more of a panic as I don't like shutting down like that. It is feeling of panic and fainting at the same time if that makes sense?
{Ooh! I was going to add that the same panic I feel when I go sick but I tend to go unconcious so I need my airwaves clearing if I go sick. Is annoying as I have heard doctors can give something to prevent people going sick, but I have never had this despite mentioning it. If I go sick due to illness, I am in trouble! My Mum is the same. But as I know this and panic, the same type of panic with a shutdown, but I can't do anything about the panic as I shut down? But it makes me think that I could be shutting down if I go sick due to the drama when my body is already weakened?}
And when I come out of a shutdown I am vunerable to go back in if people start to make a fuss. If people talk and expect me to reply etc. I can't do much.... Actually while I could I answer brief and am a bit... Ummm... Nasty? Like having to move because I am in the way... I would take all my energy to move a few feet and go straight back into another shutdown.

Partial shutdowns. What it is like? Ummm. Think of having the flu or some sort of sickness bug but without the feeling sick part. My balance is effected and to walk or do things takes great effort, and risks me going into a full shutdown. When I walk it can look like I am drunk? (I stagger and may find it difficult to walk in a straight line which is embarissing when I get looks as I try to walk towards my car so I can put the seat back and take a break to recover, recover and then drive off! People could assume that I am drinking and driving!)

I don't get headaches but with pressures from stress I often get the feeling like my brain is claustrophobic... I mean like it has swollen to twice the size there is room for it in my skull? It feels something like that. It is not pain exactly, but not a nice feeling. I never knew this could be stress until about two years ago or maybe a year ago when my Mum said she noticed that I am stressed (I was in a partial shutdown at the time or i had recovered from one) and by her saying that, I know what stress feels like, as when I feel that feeling I call it stress.

I never realized that I can be lacking the ability to differentiate between certain feelings. Some feelings I didn't know wat they were as with me several feelings come out as the same feeling if that makes sense? For example. Nurvousness I know and feel. What's anxiety? Stress after all my life I now know, but I remember in my early 20's when being asked "Are you nurvous? Are you stressed?" by a doctor and I said "No" because I didn't know what these feelings were. When going i to a partial or a full shutdown, as they somehow felt like fainting to me I always assumed they were. I never connected the cause until I came on this site and that was a few months ago. Wow, I have opened up a huge map about myself since then! And I am testing things by assessing myself like "What caused me to have a partial shutdown? What causes me to feel stressed? Things like that! I am learning and learning so many new things. Like why I find I am already close to shutting down or going into partial shutdowns at hospitals. Is the bleach/dissinfectant smell with the long corridors and the bright lights... The panic of feeling like this and having to walk up stairs on my own while my Mum takes the lift as I hate lifts!
People on this site may assume because I mention my Mum a lot that I can't be independent. I can and would not have too mny issues except things like filling in forms, but if I ever get a sickness bug I will probably die as there is no one to clear my airwaves. (My Mum also being the same as I have cleared hers on occasions, and once I had to push her body away from the door so I could get in... She had to change bedrooms after that). For me though, though I tend to prefer living away from the fusses of people, I get lonely if on my own. My Mum may not understand me when I habe a shutdown but she has learned (Usually!) not to keep trying to speak to me, but this has taken her years of me telling her as I would get the "Don't think about it" and "Ignore it. I have to!" type of remarks. But all in all considering, my Mum understands me a lot as she is actually a lot like me.


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18 Aug 2019, 4:12 am

Not a thing to worry in my case.
Sure it seems severe, but it's not a common occurrence. It's not easy for me to get overwhelmed so easily even if my sensory system is more sensitive and unfiltered.

Because unlike most autistics, I don't deal with anxiety on regular basis -- yet also unlike most aspies, I cannot afford anxiety as much as most do. So either I prevent it or overcome it as soon as possible.
Plenty more of stuff I don't have to deal with; I don't deal with physically weaker constitution and clumsiness. And this weird sense of fear that is somewhat aiding me against all the uncertainties dealt in the real world at large.


.. To some, it does feel like fainting. In my case, it's like exhaustion, raw like feeling on top of being overwhelmed. I never fainted into unconsciousness my whole life.
Panics are near nonexistent in my case, unless it's a situational panic with real life threats and consequences than a perceived one.
But still, shutting down would leave me vulnerable -- it just sudden loss of control and thresholds doesn't trigger my mind into fight or flight. I'd get confused, I'd struggle, easily affected, but so far never to the point of anxiety.
At worst, it's just frustrating or painful -- and pain doesn't always stop me. Claustrophobic?.. Never felt that my whole life, and I'm quite sensitive to the concept of sensing spaces myself.
I just don't like it if my body and mind is dictated on so much on human needs. Yet I'm still working on beyond just acknowledging it.


While I have the relatively same vulnerabilities when it comes to stress... I'm quite aware where it came from, be it internal or external.
It's a learnable skill to be aware of ones feelings in general. It's already tricky when sensing the inner workings even without alexithymia and with lesser internal tolerance. Even more trickier to learn how to regulate with the sensitivity.

It's just describing it in my case is harder for an entirely different reasons.


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18 Aug 2019, 11:42 am

Sorry for late reply. Thanks for your reply Edna. Wht sets off issues with me I am still learning, as years ago a doctor told me the issues I was getting was due to "Some sort of allergy" which completely threw me off in the wrong direction for something like 30 years of my life. It took me until I was about 16 or older to convince my parents I was having issues as I had had them since the age of six or seven (Certainly the age of seven onwards). Before that, I used to get tempers and as a baby I used to scream and cry until I went blue in my face and I would not breathe. Umm. My mother once almoat threw me out the window! :mrgreen: I know my Dad didn't stand for me having tempers and with a few smacked bottoms, it all turned inwards, and this, I believe, is when I first started having issues with partial shutdowns and the occasional shutdown etc. (I'm glad my Dad corrected me though, as if he didn't, during the tempers i had no limits. I was way out if control which is not like me. From the age of six or seven onwards I would get angry, but I never did get into a temper. Before when I had tempers I would even destroy my own toys. One of the things I would do is totally mess everything in my room. Tip all my toys out all over the floor etc. After the temper I would cry my eyes out at what I had done! I loved my toys and was very posessive of them).
One thing I do remember from the early years of being younger then six, was that I would get into real tempers out of the sheer frustration of not being able to communicate how I feel. Thinking of it, later in life, having feelings but not being able to come out with them or even know what the feelings are, could be a trigger for having a partial shutdow?
Question. Could the tempers I used to have when I was very young be meltdowns? As an adult I believe I have had them but in a different form (Not as in a temper but a type of feeling like my head is about to explode through the pressure inside!) I rarely get these. Once a year? Once every other year? Not often. Twice a year or more often is rare.
Partial shutdowns. At the moment I am in a constand state of the fringes of having them, and it is rare not to have at least one a day. I had one today in work and I was soo delayed at doing my job over it. Thankfully no one noticed as I worked through my lunch break. I am having to do that a lot recently due to prtial shutdowns. I don't want the comany to think I am not pulling my weight.


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18 Aug 2019, 4:34 pm

Mountain Goat wrote:
Question. Could the tempers I used to have when I was very young be meltdowns?

Highly likely yes. I got the similar reactions and so do most autistics at certain ages.

On the surface, it only looked like it's some sort of temper tantrum.
The difference's within those reactions' intent; a tantrum is a manipulative behavior and usually stops by getting whatever a child wants, a meltdown is a form of scream for help and no amount of 'treats' could stop it.


Quote:
As an adult I believe I have had them but in a different form (Not as in a temper but a type of feeling like my head is about to explode through the pressure inside!) I rarely get these. Once a year? Once every other year? Not often. Twice a year or more often is rare.

It comes with awareness (self and others) and regulation or self control as one ages... Maturity in general.
The same with some issues related to that. (Sensory/emotional/other...)


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18 Aug 2019, 5:41 pm

Thanks Edna. It is difficult to know what was temper and what was frustration. It was so long ago. Some was temper. Some in my earlier years of ages up to about three was definately frustration. It is quite a long time ago, though I do have a good memory of my earlg years... Certainly from about 5 months onwards, if not from about three months? I know frustration! I knew and remember what it was like not being able to talk and wanting to talk. I wasn't late talking. In fact, my first words were as clear as anything and they were at about 5 months old, and I remember saying them and the reaction of dissbelief my Dad gave at the time. He went overboard in his joy to hear me speak, and I didn't know what his reaction meant so I kept quiet from then on and learnt to talk at the average age. Was it talking? Well, I remember hearing the three words on the TV advert and I copied them to see if I could say them, and from what my Dad later said, the words came out as clear as day! It wasn't communicating. It was copying.
They say that those on the spectrum would be very slow to learn to talk. I was not, but there again, am I on the spectrum?
I used to scream and cry because I was frustrated in that I could not communicate my feelings. But, I think most children at an early age will likely be the same?

Anyway. I am doing what my Mum often tells me off for. Talking about myself and what I want to say and not leaving others talk about theirselves. Always doing that. I apologise as I can't help it. I am either very quiet or very chatty about myself and my interests!
I try not to be self centred though. Not easy to see things from another persons point of view! My Mum stopped me when talking to a neighbour to say "Let her speak about what interests her!" Without thinking I said "But I don't know what she is interested in?" I put my foot in it there didn't I! Oops!


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18 Aug 2019, 6:44 pm

Mountain Goat wrote:
Thanks Edna. It is difficult to know what was temper and what was frustration. It was so long ago. Some was temper. Some in my earlier years of ages up to about three was definately frustration. It is quite a long time ago, though I do have a good memory of my earlg years... Certainly from about 5 months onwards, if not from about three months? I know frustration! I knew and remember what it was like not being able to talk and wanting to talk.

It seems common for autistics to have a good long term memory, but this doesn't apply to all autistics though.

Speech delay, to some, is a red flag for developmental delays.

Quote:
I wasn't late talking. In fact, my first words were as clear as anything and they were at about 5 months old, and I remember saying them and the reaction of dissbelief my Dad gave at the time. He went overboard in his joy to hear me speak, and I didn't know what his reaction meant so I kept quiet from then on and learnt to talk at the average age. Was it talking? Well, I remember hearing the three words on the TV advert and I copied them to see if I could say them, and from what my Dad later said, the words came out as clear as day! It wasn't communicating. It was copying.

There's a term for that.
It's called echolalia. It's also common amongst autistics.

Quote:
They say that those on the spectrum would be very slow to learn to talk. I was not, but there again, am I on the spectrum?

.. You'll need a professional for that.

Quote:
I used to scream and cry because I was frustrated in that I could not communicate my feelings. But, I think most children at an early age will likely be the same?

Anyway. I am doing what my Mum often tells me off for. Talking about myself and what I want to say and not leaving others talk about theirselves. Always doing that. I apologise as I can't help it. I am either very quiet or very chatty about myself and my interests!
I try not to be self centred though. Not easy to see things from another persons point of view! My Mum stopped me when talking to a neighbour to say "Let her speak about what interests her!" Without thinking I said "But I don't know what she is interested in?" I put my foot in it there didn't I! Oops!

So-called 'lack of empathy', monologuing, one-sided conversations, no give-and-take, 'egocentry', off-terms/wording, infodumping, etc.
It is also no surprise that some people mistook aspergers with egocentrism as a trait -- some can go as far to mistake it for narcissism.

The social issues are more than just that it seems and underlying issues are more complicated than how it appears. Not anyone can see that.


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Mountain Goat
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18 Aug 2019, 9:29 pm

Ecocentricity. I took a test and it says I dont have that. I first tried looking up what it says and was puzzled. While doing the test it was all about the second best answer as the ideal answer I wanted wasn't there!
Here is the result, which I don't know if it is true.


"Your probably the least self-centerd person out there. Infact, you take yourself for granted. People gravitate towards you because you always make them feel good about themselves, without bragging about things you like about you. While being humble can be a good thing you need to make sure your modesty and almost unlimited genorosity doesn't effect your self-esteem."

The only bit I dissagree with the above statement is people always gravitate towards me. I believe I find the opposite to be true in general though I maybe wrong. Do you gravitate towards me or away from me?



Now I do not talk in a monotone voice.


One sided conversations and info dumping... That's me to a T.

I don't have echolalia.

Empathy... I can't seem to tell the difference between empathy and sympathy. AspiePrincess (I think that's here username) tried to explain it to me. While I know I sympathise, and I believe I emphasise, telling the difference between the two in my mind....What was it again? Haha!

I would like to say Edna, your English is absolutely amazing for someone who lives in South East Asia.


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18 Aug 2019, 9:55 pm

Mountain Goat wrote:
Do you gravitate towards me or away from me?

Neither to be honest. I would only provide what I know and understand.
To gravitate to either depends on my mood or what I could currently do.

Quote:
Empathy... I can't seem to tell the difference between empathy and sympathy. AspiePrincess (I think that's here username) tried to explain it to me. While I know I sympathise, and I believe I emphasise, telling the difference between the two in my mind....What was it again? Haha!

To emphasize, it means to put yourself into one's shoes.
You know what this person thinks, what this person more than they felt, what they might likely do in certain situations -- you'll know what they want and want to hear.

To sympathize means you feel for that person. You'll be sad/angry/happy/etc for them... And that's just mainly it.

Quote:
I would like to say Edna, your English is absolutely amazing for someone who lives in South East Asia.

... It's more likely because English in an official language from where I live.


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19 Aug 2019, 4:25 am

I think I do emphasize. Yes... Especially if the other person thinks like me. If they don't then... Nope! Haha! No one can!

Thinking about things now, I must be an NT who is going through a bad patch and who has partial shutdowns and shutdowns and is by nature a loner and does not like crowds... And is not one for basic chit chat, but turns conversations towards my hobbies or something I can relate to... Like myself! Oops! Haha! (Only say myself as I can talk about myself... Well... I can type about myself. I may need prompting to talk about myself).

Though if I am an NT who has been hampered through an accumilation of day to day sress so the slightest thing becomes many times amplified then it should be, then I may not need to be assessed and go through the stress of being assessed anyway. I am not saying the assessment is stressful. I don't know. Is just these days I do not like having possible pending appointments. I already have a dentist appointment for next year for a check up... I am trying to free my life of dates... If I have no future appointments, it is easier to relax. Sometime in the winter... Maybe december, I have a blood pressure appointment. They write a letter every 6 months to have me book an appointment. A few years ago I was found to have high blood pressure. Prior to that, when I was in my 20's I was told by a doctor to eat as much junk food as I can as I had a very low heart rate and low blood pressure due to doing 100 to 250 miles a week cycling. I didn't know what junk food was! I had a picture of asking at a car scrapyard for some junk food. We didn't really use the term in those days in my area of the UK. I know back then my heart rate was 60.It is about average today.

I do have another thought though. If I am not assessed how do I really know what is happening? I know I have always been a bit of a loner.. It is not that I want to be but I more naturally am as I don't fully connect. I sort of connect at arms length with people if that makes sense. I get the feeling that no one knows the real "Me". So maybe I could be on the spectrum.


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