Kym Marsh has admitted she suffered such severe panic attacks, she felt like she was going to die.
The Coronation Street actress opened up about dealing with anxiety, revealing she sought medical help when it got so bad.
‘Everybody gets anxiety. It’s just how your body deals with it,’ she said. ‘I was getting to the stage where I was getting particularly anxious and I would get anxiety attacks. I would feel like I couldn’t breathe, I’d get pins and needles in my fingers, I’d get light-headed.
‘The first time it ever happened, I thought I was going to die – I actually thought I was going to die, and I was driving my car as well. It’s a really frightening, really scary thing to experience.’ she added.
The soap star went on to tell The Sun that the episode left her feeling like she didn’t want to drive her car anymore.
Since then, Kym, 42, has received medical help and now finds its easier to cope with her panic attacks.
‘The way I deal with it now is, if I ever do feel anxious – which I still do from time to time – is that I just think of it as an old friend,’ she explained.
‘I know what’s going to happen, I know I’m not going to die, I just know that it’s going to come and go and when you learn to deal with it that way, it becomes manageable and once you start on that path, it tends to disappear quite quickly.’
Kym, who plays Michelle Connor on the ITV soap, said she’s drawn on her real-life experiences to put emotion into her dramatic Corrie scenes.
‘Yeah I really do still go there as well – you have to. For example, when I was doing all the stuff with Will the stalker, I had to be really scared and I was locked in the boot of a car,’ she said.
‘You do have to get yourself to those places. But again that is a case of mind over matter and you know that’s not real, so mentally you have to tell yourself that it’s not reality and try to get out of that as quickly as possible. I didn’t dwell on those situations.’
Kym is now in her 13th year of playing Michelle and has recently signed a contract that will keep her in the soap until 2019.