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Danxiety
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 322
   Posted 4/28/2008 8:27 PM (GMT -7)   
hey there_

I wanted to come back on (its been some time since i last wrote in the forums here) and ask a few questions about things -- or just put something out there and see if i get some replies. I clicked on the thread ( So Tired of Being a Hypochondriac) as it relates to me a bit. I never had this problem, like you all describe, but something happened recently and I've yet to full recover. I hope its ok for me to start a new thread as it is related, but different -- i think.

about 8 days ago I was visiting friends at work. There was a subtle odor in the place and i found that i started to fixate on it. I go home, cause i couldnt really take anymore -- even though subtle, and find that i still smell this odor, or think i do. I took showers, cleaned my apartment ("maybe something rubbed off on my clothes and now its on my couch" I thought). I felt a little nauseated from the experience and started to find it becoming hard to breath (or the sense of that). I calmed myself down and tried to just relax. Later that night i felt like everything kinda smelled like this odor. The cleaning supplies i used "kinda smelled like it". The mans cologne in the corner store kinda smelled like it too... And that was that... I thought i smelled it once the next day, but for the most part, no odor. (part A).

The next day i took a shower. In a place i got tattooed, i realized the skin had come off in the shower. It was pretty gross and looked like a kid who had got some road rash from falling on a skateboard or something -- or similar to when a scab comes off from swimming. Logically, i knew this was no big deal (its happens, things heal rough some times), but in my mind i started to think... "Oh no, what is going on!!! This is not right!!!" I was very scared. So much so, i started to feel panicy, but no panic yet. I went and visited my friends and they reasured me that "yeah, its not good, but its no big deal... Just keep it clean and it'll be fine." And logically they're right. But I had a hard time convincing myself, even though i knew it was no big deal. It was the day before (part A) knock me down a some and i had some major anxiety, and then i was hit with this situation (Part B) which pushed me over the top. Soooooo...

A few days pass and everything is fine with that. I had a friend in town, and noticed that i was very anxious the entire time. He's an intense guy, but one of my best friends. I think the previous days put me in a position where i needed some recovery time, but he came in from outta town. So, yeah the entire time i was anxious, couldnt sleep well, and just felt like i was barely making it... Sleep was so bad one Weds. night that i got up in the morning panicky. I had to take an adivan, which helped, but thrusday was no walk in the park. I remember that i couldnt wait to see my PDoc the next day, but time seemed to be at a stand still. (Part C)

Now we're at friday of last week. My friend still in town, its time for me to go to my PDoc. I tell her about everything, and since i've been in this same "mind state" several times, she drops the "bipolar 2" diagnostic bomb on me (Part D). Now, logically this is a good thing. I've been seeing this doctor weekly for 6+ years and really trust her. So for her to say this was good, but it really scared me. I had a really hard session with her, and we ended with the idea of me getting some labs done (for BP2 meds) but we wont do ANY med adjustments. Not yet. So i go home and freak out about this. I know i really shouldnt, but i was scared and felt like i failed. Failed at recovery. I was very very sad.

My friend leaves saturday, and later that day my anxiety was middle of the road. Worse than usual, but not as bad as the day before. Then yesterday I was depressed. Really depressed. I felt "over it" and sorta numb. My sister wrote me an email saying she missed me and that sent me over the edge with sadness. My guard was then down and i was upset. After a while i felt a little better. I planned on going to get my labs down early this morning before i saw my PDoc today so i took my meds and was a sleep by 10:15ish... I slept poorly and got up around 6:30AM feeling tired but wired. I went to my docs, told her that the weekend was pretty depressing and that i got my labs. We talked about everything and she said that i still seemed depressed, and i was. I told her that i felt sad, and feared that the day would get worse, and boy did it.

I got home and started looking around the internet about odors. I see stuff about brain tumors, diabetes, MS, and a host of other things. Then i started to think i might smell that odor. Bad news (Part E). So now i'm trying to keep my bearings together, but i've essentially lost it. I'm in a "mixed state" of anxiety and depression. I fear that i might have something seriously wrong with me and my Pdoc (i called her freaked out) wants me to go see my other doc, to "rule things out". She also wants me to take adivan, which works great but i have this guilty thing about taking it. I guess cause i feel like a failure. I took 1MG around 6:30PM and feel a little better. I feel tired, but now my appetite is back so i'm gonna eat dinner.

Anyways, I never really been a hypochondriac, but i think because i cant logically explain how i feel, and being sleep deprived is making me scare, sensitive, and reaching for things like "maybe i have a brain tumor"... I'm gonna call my doc tomorrow am, as i think it will calm my nerves to rule stuff out. Thanks for reading my 5 part story. I'm it might not be easy to follow, so i apologize for all that read it and are thinking " What the heck is this guy mumbling about". I just wanted to try and get it all out.

thanks all!
dan
---
Anxiety, Panic Disorder, Depression, possibly Bipolar 2.

"We work on ourselves in order to help others, but also we help others in order to work on ourselves."
- Pema Chodron

Post Edited (Danxiety) : 4/28/2008 9:49:02 PM (GMT-6)


Howlyncat
Elite Member


Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 24909
   Posted 4/29/2008 7:45 AM (GMT -7)   
Wow Dan
Great to see you back but holly hannah you sure got a lot going on
First I would think some major Anticipatory Anxiety is happening with you
.......worrying about whether you are seriously ill or have Bi Polar Disorder
I know it is not as easy as it sounds but you have to C A L M yourself down just a tad here and really get yourself puting self back together........Breathe and look at the glass half full NOT half empty

I have had the odor thing for so many yrs it is unreal..everything smells to me.I will say to Cait "what the hades is that smell and I use pine sol like there is no tomorrow and insence as well as air fresheners.......
I cannot for the life of me smell meat cuz if I even "Think" it is off I will not eat for days believe me .......

I have gone thru so much Health Anxiety and Anticapatory Anxiety it is a wonder I can sleep.......and that too is hard for me.....I take trazadone which stops the "stinking thinking" from going round and round in my head all night.....
I use to take ativan and valium with the outbreaks of the Pyoderma but now only take Valium.........

I really believe that once you get the results you WILL be able to deal with whatever comes your way you have so many times before as I recall........If you do have Bi Polar Disorder it is TX and there are meds for it

Taking ativan to keep self from flipping and freaking out DOES not make you a failure
Some ppl have to take meds ...Plain and simple.........
I know you have gone thru hades and back with whats in your post as it literally made me spinny reading it,but as I said I really think ONCE you know for sure what is going on with you .......you will use what meds ( if needed) and techniques ( if needed) to keep self in the mode to function daily.........

I do hope that the Bi Polar is not the case and I will keep you in my heart thoughts and prayers ........
I also know that if it is Bi Polar.....you can be treated effectively and support is here for you .....as well you know

I sure wish I could be of more help to you but ALL I can do is give my thoughts and opinions hee and again I say having to take the ativan is NOT making you a failure
Anticipatory Anxiety is real as is Health Anxiety
I also think you should stay away from checking out the net for every lil thing especially right now when you are so vulnerable.........
Hoping this helps a bit

Take care and keep us posted plz

LYN


  DX With Crohns,Pyoderma Gangrenosum,Anxiety/Panic,Fibro & Other DD
 
Moderator @ Anxiety Panic..Alzheimer's..Co mod @ Crohns
                               FIGHT the FIGHT with all YOU HAVE
 
   
 
                   
 


stkitt
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 4/29/2008 7:50 AM (GMT -7)   

Good Morning Dan,

It is good to see you here but I am sorry you are having issues.

Health Anxiety  is often characterized by fears that minor bodily symptoms may indicate a serious illness, constant self-examination and self-diagnosis, and a preoccupation with one's body. Many individuals with health anxiety express doubt and disbelief in the doctors' diagnosis, and report that doctors’ reassurance about an absence of a serious medical condition is unconvincing, or un-lasting. Many with health anxiety  require constant reassurance, either from doctors, family, or friends, and the disorder can become a disabling torment for the individual with health anxiety, as well as his or her family and friends. Some individuals are completely avoidant of any reminder of illness, whereas others are frequent visitors of doctors’ offices. Other  will never speak about their terror, convinced that their fear of having a serious illness will not be taken seriously by those in whom they confide./Wikipedia

Does this feel to you like what you are going through or are you having more depression and anxiety sx which has been you dx if I remember correctly?

I agree, see your PCP for a good general physicial and have the area where the tatoo skin sloughed off looked at as you could have an infection there that could be the source of the odor.

You have not failed,  and remember not to set  standards that you must be fine for the rest of your life.  That is not the nature of anxiety and depression.  I am glad you are still seeing your Pdoc and please try not to let "labels throw you..........your still a wonderful and stong person going through a tough time.
((((((((((((((((((((((HUGS))))))))))))))))))))))))

Try our staying in the moment and not worrying about what happened yesterday.  Tomorrow will come and you will deal with it so for today just be in the moment.

Don't indulge in stinkin thinking, "Why can't I be normal ? Why does this have to happen to me?" Just accept what is happening to you. If you do this, what you fear most will not happen.

Kitt

 

 


 
Kitt, Moderator: Anxiety ~ Panic 
Not a mental health professional of any kind
It is health that is real wealth and not pieces of gold and silver.~Mahatma Gandhi~
 


Danxiety
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 322
   Posted 4/29/2008 10:21 AM (GMT -7)   
Thanks! Kitt, to answer your question I think the answer is no. But i usually am triggered by something i can point to... For instance when my dog was passing away, i feared being alone. I was really clear about that in my head. I feared losing him, and that was very clear to. This is the first time that my mind has reached into these scenarios. I'm looking for a logical explanation and looking at little things that have happened and grabbing on to them (if that makes sense). Its like i'm free falling into a pit of despair and try to grab on to anything i can. I need to just let go and enjoy the fall, because there is a big cushion (friends, family, and this site) at the bottom to catch me and help me out.

I'm taking that adivan which immediately removed the anticipatory anxiety and help me get a good night sleep. I actually got up this morning feeling groggy, but better. I also made an appointment to see my PCP, as he can maybe run a few test and help put my mind to ease. Not knowing if you're hallucinating is a scary thing, but i do think that i smelled something, and for whatever reason the smell + allergies cause me to feel like i couldnt breath. This must have marked something in me, as when i was in my anxious state yesterday i was reaching for that. " It must be the smell thing again" When its not. I dont know what it is, but think its as simple as not having enough sleep :)

So thanks again for reading my long winded message. And no more self diagnosing... I helped someone with that last year, so thanks for the reminder and helping me.

all the best, my friends.
dan
---
Anxiety, Panic Disorder, Depression, possibly Bipolar 2.

"We work on ourselves in order to help others, but also we help others in order to work on ourselves."
- Pema Chodron


percycat
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 1952
   Posted 4/29/2008 11:11 AM (GMT -7)   
Dan,

Glad you're doing a little better today, and that you'll be able to get in to see your doctor soon.

I went through a long period of fearing that I was allergic to certain foods (I'm not). Whenever I would smell them, I immediately got panicky and started worrying about whether I could breathe. I realize now that those spells were definitely just my anxiety, but the physical sensations were quite real. I was just misinterpreting them. I've heard that smell is the sense most closely linked to our memories, so it's not surprising that it can set us off like nothing else!

Good luck to you, and let us know what you find out.

percycat

Danxiety
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 322
   Posted 4/29/2008 11:57 AM (GMT -7)   
Wow, thanks! I didnt know smell was the most closely linked sense to our memories. Really interesting and nice to hear! I'll report back after my appointment tomorrow morning. I'm actually excited about it now, cause i feel less "out of control". And if it is something really bad, well i'll deal with that as it comes. For now, its nothing until someone properly examines me :D

whoo!
dan
---
Anxiety, Panic Disorder, Depression, possibly Bipolar 2.

"We work on ourselves in order to help others, but also we help others in order to work on ourselves."
- Pema Chodron


stkitt
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 4/29/2008 1:29 PM (GMT -7)   

You have our support and hugs as always so you are staying in the moment.  Proud of you.  We will catch you, no doubt about it.

Kitt


 
Kitt, Moderator: Anxiety ~ Panic 
Not a mental health professional of any kind
It is health that is real wealth and not pieces of gold and silver.~Mahatma Gandhi~
 


Danxiety
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 322
   Posted 4/29/2008 11:39 PM (GMT -7)   
thanks kitt! I really appreciate it.
dan
---
Anxiety, Panic Disorder, Depression, possibly Bipolar 2.

"We work on ourselves in order to help others, but also we help others in order to work on ourselves."
- Pema Chodron


nervymeg
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 2721
   Posted 4/30/2008 12:49 AM (GMT -7)   

Dan, I'm really glad you are back..you seem (as Lyn put it) going through a whole lotta mucho bug stuff (not exact quote!) there.  I'm glad you are getting in to see a pdoc and I hope that put's your mind at rest a lil bit...

Sense memory is one of our most important, well senses..it can really trigger a whole lot of emotion, and it sounds like this has happened for you.  If someone puts pepermint tea in front of me I start having a panic attack because that's what my mother always gave me when I panicked..sheesh! Hang in there Dan, I'll be thinking of you and hoping things get a whole lot better soon.  Keep us posted please.


Co-moderator Anxiety/Panic
Panic Attack Survivor
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wen4003
Veteran Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 1193
   Posted 4/30/2008 7:37 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Dan,
 
You sure have a lot of things going on right now and I hope things start getting better soon.  I too didn't know that smell was so closely linked to memories - very interesting fact.  How are you doing today and how did your doc appt go?  Let us know when you get a chance.
 
Take care,
Wen

Co-Moderator Anxiety/Panic Disorders

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Danxiety
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 322
   Posted 4/30/2008 12:38 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi there friends_

I just got back from the doc, it went well I think. He wants to talk to some of his Neurological buddies to see what they think, before running me through a bunch of test (if unnecessary). He also thinks that if it was more serious the events would have taken place in a bit of a different order, and the fact that i really only smell the odor one time makes him think its physiological. Sooooo, that said, i should hear from him sometime this week. I'm WAY less worried. I took adivan monday night and that seemed to stop the cycle i was spinning in. Thanks for asking wen!

breathe easy_
dan
---
Anxiety, Panic Disorder, Depression, possibly Bipolar 2.

"We work on ourselves in order to help others, but also we help others in order to work on ourselves."
- Pema Chodron


percycat
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 1952
   Posted 5/1/2008 6:24 PM (GMT -7)   
Dan,

That's good to hear that your doctor doesn't think it can be something serious, and he's got sound evidence for that. He's also helped you put together a good plan for figuring out what is/might be wrong, and that's always comforting.

I'm so glad you're feeling less worried about your health. Hang in there, and welcome back!

percycat

PS - I'll have to look up where I saw that tidbit about smell and memories. But it's why sometimes when you smell something familiar, it brings back emotions, more so than when you see or hear or touch familiar things from the past (with the exception of music, of course).

CluelessJournalist
New Member


Date Joined May 2008
Total Posts : 12
   Posted 5/1/2008 6:48 PM (GMT -7)   
Okay, I know this is random, but it might help?

The smell you described...what did it smell like? How recent was the tattoo?

Both times I've gotten tattoos, they've had a strange smell about them until they've mostly healed. It's a really odd smell, tough to describe — like body chemistry mixing with fresh ink. It's not a pleasant smell, but it isn't terrible either, just weird. (Also, you're right about the normal thing with the skin falling off after a tattoo. It's just your body taking care of itself and healing as the ink sets in!)

Danxiety
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 322
   Posted 5/1/2008 8:50 PM (GMT -7)   
Hey there_

Its hard to describe, but its definitely not the "fresh tattoo" smell. It was more like a deodorant or mild cologne. Whatever it was, I was fixating on it. Obsessing a bit, and then leaving without find out what it was. That's the mistake i made. But i wasn't thinking that way.

Its definitely not tattoo related, just happened to be in the shop. I've been there almost everyday for the past 4 years.
But thanks! And i know what you smell you are referring too and its not pleasant :)

breathe easy_
dan
---
Anxiety, Panic Disorder, Depression, possibly Bipolar 2.

"We work on ourselves in order to help others, but also we help others in order to work on ourselves."
- Pema Chodron


percycat
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 1952
   Posted 5/2/2008 6:04 AM (GMT -7)   
All,

Here's a quote about memory and smell from Macalester College's Behavioral Neuroscience class' "Smell: The Forgotten Sense" web site. (Click their "Smell and Memory" link for the whole article.)

"Olfaction is the sensory modality that is physically closest to the limbic system, of which the hippocampus and amygdala are a part, and which is responsible for emotions and memory. Indeed this may be why odor-evoked memories are unusually emotionally potent (1996). "

I never knew why the connection between smell and emotional memory worked, but it sure makes sense.

percycat

Howlyncat
Elite Member


Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 24909
   Posted 5/2/2008 6:20 AM (GMT -7)   
Am keeping you in my thoughts and prayers Dan
I know you will get thru this TOO
Am so glad you are so much less worried about your health right now as well .KUDOS to you

Stay with us plz.........LYN

Percy

Makes a lot of sence to me too
Thanks for posting
Am going to check into this more
My sense of smell is totally out there
I smell any odor ........And have a memory flash or emotional moment ........
Constantly asking what the smell is
As well I can catch the odd smell of a frangrance my mom wore and it can bring me to tears .......
Many smells have so much memeory involved now that I think of it and reminds me of so much emotional things in my life

Something like the old song

"OHhhhh That Smell..Cant you smell that smell"
Now I have that going thru this wacky head.lol
be well
Have a great day all


  DX With Crohns,Pyoderma Gangrenosum,Anxiety/Panic,Fibro & Other DD
 
Moderator @ Anxiety Panic..Alzheimer's..Co mod @ Crohns
                               FIGHT the FIGHT with all YOU HAVE
 
   
 
                   
 

Post Edited (Howlyncat) : 5/2/2008 7:25:55 AM (GMT-6)


percycat
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 1952
   Posted 5/2/2008 1:39 PM (GMT -7)   
Lyn,

I hope it's just that phrase of the song that you're thinking of. LOL The rest of it's kind of morbid/angry, although it is a GREAT tune! Maybe we can ask our resident drummer Tony to play us a few licks?

percycat

Danxiety
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 322
   Posted 5/3/2008 9:54 PM (GMT -7)   
I just wanted to say i had a really rough day today. Well, just a rough evening. The day seemed fine. I started taking a new medication and am adjusting to it. I'm having these interesting states where i feel anxious, depressed, empty, scared, all rolled into one. It got to the point to where i was "stuck" I was almost paralyzed from it... Like i couldnt do anything but sit there and think. I tried to call some people but know one was around. I then took adivan, and now i feel back to normal...

ugh.

Anyways, thanks again for all your support everyone! It means a lot.

breathe easy_
dan
---
Anxiety, Panic Disorder, Depression, possibly Bipolar 2.

"We work on ourselves in order to help others, but also we help others in order to work on ourselves."
- Pema Chodron


stkitt
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 5/3/2008 10:09 PM (GMT -7)   

Hey Dan,

Hi there, I am still up, so thought I would tell you I am thinking of you my friend. Starting meds is always a bear, not just the meds but the anxiety that seems to come from within and from the meds.

Remember this:

It does not matter if you feel frightened, disorientated, dreamlike, or unsteady. These feelings are an exaggeration of the normal bodily reactions to stress.

Just because you have these sensations doesn't mean you are crazy. These feelings are just unpleasant and frightening, not dangerous. Nothing worse will happen to you.

Let your feelings come. . Don't run away from panic. When you feel panic build up, take a deep breath and as you breathe out, let go. Keep trying. Stay there almost as if you were floating in space. Don't fight the feeling of panic. Accept it; you can deal with it.

Try to make yourself as comfortable as possible without escaping. If you're on a street, lean against a post or a store wall. If you're at the cosmetics department of a store, find a quieter counter or corner. If you're in a boutique, tell the salesperson you don't feel well and want to sit for a while. Do not jump into a car and go home in fear.

Don't indulge in stinkin thinking, "Why can't I be normal ? Why does this have to happen to me?" Just accept what is happening to you. If you do this, what you fear most will not happen.

Think about what is really happening to your body at this moment. Do not think "Something terrible is going to happen. I must get out." Repeat to yourself "I am ok, I will not die or lose control."

breathe easy ~

Kitt :)


 
Kitt, Moderator: Anxiety ~ Panic 
Not a mental health professional of any kind
It is health that is real wealth and not pieces of gold and silver.~Mahatma Gandhi~
 


Danxiety
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 322
   Posted 5/3/2008 10:22 PM (GMT -7)   
:)

Thanks kitt for the refreshing reminder. It's all stuff i say as well!!! It's putting it to practice...thats the hard part.

You're the best.

Deep breaths_
dan
---
Anxiety, Panic Disorder, Depression, possibly Bipolar 2.

"We work on ourselves in order to help others, but also we help others in order to work on ourselves."
- Pema Chodron


percycat
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 1952
   Posted 5/4/2008 6:39 AM (GMT -7)   
Dan,

I hope you're doing better this morning. The med adjustment will take a while, but you've probably gone through side effects before and been able to handle them, and I know you'll be able to do it again.

I understand that paralyzed feeling. It's so weird: you know you should be doing something to prod yourself into action, and you can even think of things to do, but the will to move your body into actually doing them just doesn't materialize. At least, that's how it feels for me.

Kitt's posted some excellent advice, and I hope it works for you. Remind yourself that this should all just be temporary and that you are strong enough to hang on until it's over.

Let us know how you're feeling today.

Hugs,
percycat

Danxiety
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 322
   Posted 5/5/2008 2:51 PM (GMT -7)   
I'm feeling a little better! Thanks percy. And you nailed the feeling! " but the will to move your body into actually doing them just doesn't materialize" is spot on... I hate when that happens. It seems to go hand in hand with heavy anxiety... At least for me.

Thanks again, i am feeling better!
dan
---
Anxiety, Panic Disorder, Depression, possibly Bipolar 2.

"We work on ourselves in order to help others, but also we help others in order to work on ourselves."
- Pema Chodron

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