Co-Moderator Anxiety/Panic Disorders
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I am not a medical professional, any advice give is purely from personal experience.
Always seek professional advice from your doctor.
Dx: Agoraphobia, Anxiety/Panic Disorders, Barrett's Esophagus, Bipolar Disorder, Depression, Essential Tremors, Fibromyalgia, I.B.S., Mitral Valve Prolapse, Narcolepsy, PTSD, Restless Leg Syndrome, Acid Reflux, Sleep Apnea
Rx: Abilify, Flexeril, Lamictal, Neurontin, Nexium, Requip, Ritalin LA, Rozerem, Valium
“Be a good listener. Your ears will never get you into trouble.” - Frank Tyger
Welcome to HealingWell and the A & P forum. I am sorry you are having issues with social anxiety. Wen gave you great advice. I want to just add a bit on treatment.
The behavioral technique of "exposure" is an effective treatment, both short- and long-term, for social phobia. The use of exposure in fantasy, presenting increasingly anxiety-producing situations as discomfort dissipates at each level, is a form of systematic desensitization. Exposure also involves gradual adaptation to anxiety-producing objects or situations, but the objects or situations are actually present during the treatment. Flooding, rapid exposure to almost overwhelming volumes of phobic material, also known as implosion, may be used either in fantasy or in reality.There are many different therapies out there as well as medications to help you through. I do know how uncomfortable you feel and the anxiety you go through with this disorder. I have anxiety and sometimes I am frozen at home as I just don't want to go out in public.
Stay with us and know we care. Keep posting and you will find many warm and friendly members will to help you through this tough time.
Again a warm welcome to HealingWell.Kitt
Hi there Callum
You have been given great advice and insight into Social Phobia :)
I wanted to add that it is possible to work thru this and share my experiences with you..many times in the past I have tried to drive to town - pressure was way too much and had to turn back 3 or more times before I got there..and then when I did finally make my destination I have sat in the car for ages trying to collect my thoughts and calm - sometimes I have even driven off and not gone into the shops (saved money ) and other times I have even changed car park - sat for a while - forced myself out of the car (shaking like a leaf) locked the car (pretending to look in my bag for something)...finally remembering to breathe properly lol...walked really slowly or really fast - depending on the panic mode - over to the shopping mall..all the while thinking 'I am never gonna make it' and trying to shut out those thoughts...until finally I am there..step by step I made it - the feeling of acheivement is amazing...Even if at first you don't buy anything - just pretend to be browsing..whatever it takes You Can Do It - I promise
..remember to breathe...praise yourself for small victories..
Keep us posted.
Hi Callum, welcome to HW, I hope you like it here and we will try and support you as best we can. It's sounds like you are going through a tough time at the moment. Kitt, Maree and Wen have already given you some great advice so I won't bore you with too much of mine!
Body dysmorphic can be a real killer. I have always been a tiny person and when my anxiety was bad I got down to a ridiculous 70 pounds, but still thought I was fat. It took a lot of counselling and a hospital visit for me to realise that my self perception was right off the mark. I found a support group and now I KNOW when I'm getting unrealistic about my body shape. As Maree said, take small steps, rejoice in small victories. Anxiety can only control your life as much as you let it (but I know how hard it is to battle).
I'm really glad you have posted here and I hope you come back and let us know how you are doing okay?