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Tormented
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 8/18/2008 2:00 PM (GMT -7)   
 I am not sure where to begin so I guess I'll just jump right in. I have never been diagnosed with a Anxiety disorder mostly due to the fact that I didn't want to be "crazy"  and thought that the only reasons doctors diagnosed people with anxiety disorders was because they didn't really know what was wrong so they pretty uch jut made up something to fit the symptoms. Now after dealing with this off and on for the past 10 years I have realized that I need some sort of help. I have been doing some research and it seems that what I am experiencing is Generalized Anxiety Disorder?
 
 A general episode will be triggered by a news article or something in the news such as a natural disater, war, crime or something else that I have no control over. I will become fridgety, then my heart will start racing, my palms will get clamy and it takes all the the concentration I can muster to keep from hyperventalating and breaking into tears.
 
 Mind you this hasn't been a daily thing for the past 10 yrs. Its comes and goes. It seems that when I am either really stressed it will flare up or when I am really happy. Its like my body has decided that I am not permited to be happy and it is going to sabotage me. But here lately I seem to be in a constant state of panic. I dont' know if it is just getting wore the older I get or if I was just able to handle it better when I was younger. Either way I need help an I don't know wher to begin.
 
 There is a family history of anxiety and depression in my family and not very many of them seem to have any luck with medications. My cousin is 3 years older than me and if he forgets his meds he goes off of the deep end. An unlce of my mother's took prozac and it did nothng but made him worse and he ended up commiting suicide. So I have a fear of looking toward medication that I think is a valid fear. I don't want to become dependant on medication but what I am doing isn't enough anymore.
 
 Can anyone help me?
 
 
 
 

nervymeg
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 2721
   Posted 8/18/2008 7:16 PM (GMT -7)   

Hi Tormented,

Welcome to HW, It does sound to me like you may have GAD, maybe even suffer from panic attacks, or at least very near to.

I am sorry that your family has had bad reactions to medications, but each of us are individual and what works for one person can be totally wrong for another, family or not. 

As for your fear of being deemed "crazy" I wouldn't worry about that. So many people suffer from anxiety/panic these days it isn't something that is highly stigmatised anymore. Have you been to a doctor with your symptoms and concerns? They really are the best place to start. Just make sure you see someone who sin't going to demean you. If they do, leave and find another doctor.

I hope this has been of some help to you. Anxiety can be treated well through therapy, meds (if you decide) and lifestyle changes. Please let us know how you go, and again, welcome to HW.

Meg


Co-moderator Anxiety/Panic
Panic Attack Survivor
Weekend Warrior Princess
 


lovethefuzz
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 10
   Posted 8/18/2008 8:29 PM (GMT -7)   
I agree. you need to speak with a doc about the way you are feeling. There are so many different meds out there now. Please don't be afaird to tell your doctor you are uncomfortable with a medication. He can work around what ever it is that you don't wanna try. But start there and I think you'll be really happy you did.
your in my prayers. heres a big hug.xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

percycat
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 1952
   Posted 8/19/2008 4:50 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi, Tormented, and welcome!

It's certainly uncomfortable thinking about being diagnosed with something having a stigma attached to it, but being healthy and productive far outweighs the concerns in my case. And depending on where you live and who you associate with, many times, no one gives it any thought. Also, remember that you don't have to tell anyone anything about your health. It may be too that with your family history, you're hearing far more negative stories about anxiety and mental illness than average.

Do please try to find a doctor you trust so that you can discuss all the treatment options out there: medication, therapy, natural remedies, etc.

percycat

peacesoul
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 2446
   Posted 8/19/2008 5:35 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi and welcome.......Anxiety is a tough one

I've handle my severe anxiety and depression with therapy and exposure alone and never used meds except 1/2 xanax here and there the last 8 yrs, but never a constant stream and I've had severe anxiety/depression for over 25 yrs).
I'm not a believer in medications to mask a condition. I believe in treating the cause, not the symptoms.
Medications are good for getting one over the hump but in no way should be used as a crutch for life.

Of course your cousin goes off the deep end, it's like taking a wheelchair away from someone who's disabled, they fall over w/out it. When you learn to deal/face your anxiety/depression head on, there is no need for the "crutch" of medication.

I'm not saying medication does not have it's place, but it should only be used to calm a person down enough to function and then become well enough to face what the real issues are.
Medications numb the brain, they don't heal the brain

I think it would be wise to look into getting some therapy. Unless you can talk about issues are have a good support team, this cannot be dealt with alone

Good luck

Jen


Moderator - Anxiety-panic forum
 
where we take it one panic attack at a time
 
 
 
The world breaks every one and afterward many are strong in the broken places


stkitt
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 8/19/2008 5:56 AM (GMT -7)   

Welcome!

You've found a safe, caring , and reliable support community for people battling Anxiety and Panic.. We have many members here who will be glad to lend an ear, offer information, and provide support for people who need it.


Signs of anxiety include restlessness, a lot of worrying about things that probably will not happen, and not being able to pay attention or remain focused on a task. Sometimes the stress can get extreme and lead to panic attacks.

Panic attacks are short times of intense fear and anxiety, which often include quick heartbeats, shortness of breath, chest pain, dizziness or stomach problems.

I would like to suggest that you see your PCP for a medical screening exam to make sure you do not have a medical reason for your symptoms.  

Some things that may help lower your stress are:

• Getting enough rest (at least 8 hours a day)

• Meditation (sitting quietly with your thoughts)

• Listening to gentle music

• Reading

• Massage

• Taking a warm bath

• Going for walks

• Regular exercise that you are used to doing

Again a warm welcome to you and please keep posting as we are here to support you.

Kitt


 

Kitt, Moderator: Anxiety/Panic & Depression
& GERD  Forums
*~*
http://www.healingwell.com/donate *~*
Not a mental health professional of any kind
It is health that is real wealth and not pieces of gold and silver.~Mahatma Gandhi~
Clickable Link: Anxiety-Panic Resources


Tormented
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 8/19/2008 7:34 AM (GMT -7)   
Wow, I must admit that I wasn't expedcting this much of a response. I guess I have come to the right place after all. Thank you everyone for your kind words and advice.

I was glad to read that chest pains and stomach problems are also symptoms related to anxiety because I was under the impression that was something different that was going on. I will wake up almost daily with a stomach ache and chest/back pains regularly. I thought the stamoch aches were caused by too much coffee. I stopped drinking the coffee and I am still having the stomach aches, but the heartburn is gone, a plus. And as far as the chest/back pain goes; I am a fairly large breasted woman so I have been attributing that chest/back pain to that.

I have not spoken to a doctor regarding the feelings partialy due to the fact that I haven't had health insurance since I turned 20 and was no longer on my mother's policy. I am tight on money and I am fixing to go back to school soon so that isn't going to help much. I have been looking into buying health insurance but for something I can afford there isn't much financial help and the coverage isn't that great. But it is better than what my employer provides which is a joke.

I never brought it up to my mother because she always gave my aunt a difficult time about all three of her kids being in therapy and all being on "drugs" The anxiety was only part of the problem with them. They had a broken home which led to behavioral issues as well so my mother was under the impression that all they needed was proper discipline.

There is a chacnce that my anxiety is being triggered by another condition, which I am not sure I have but will find out as soon as I get the bloodwork done. My mother has I hyperthyriodism and so do both of her sisters. My motehr has been driving me crazy about getting tested for it for the past 3 years now but again back to the insurance thing. I read at www.adaa.org that your thyriod can cause certain chemicals in your body to react and casue anxiety/depression in some women. I guess that is just one more reason I need to find away to get to a docotor.

For the most part anyone I have spoke to about my anxiety has told me that its normal and that everyone has these feelings/fears and that I just need to find something to distract myself. I have been trying to control the anxiety with Chakra meditations, music, reading, going out with friends etc. Pretty much anything that will keep my mind occupied. I have also tried aromatherapy, and some herbal remedies that I have some across over the years such as St. John's Wort. They all help with "minor" epsodes but with larger ones they really don't.

percycat
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 1952
   Posted 8/19/2008 1:00 PM (GMT -7)   
Tormented,

Your last paragraph really fits me also. I've tried lots of coping skills and for the most part they work all right on smaller bouts of anxiety. With more practice, I think I'd do even better. What I find hard is bringing them into play right away before a little attack can become bigger. Deep breathing works pretty well for me - and of course, any sort of successful distraction - but my most successful efforts are talking out loud to myself for several minutes, telling myself I'll be okay. I also was feeling good when starting some chakra exercises but let them slide when they kind of "plateaued" on me. I tried St. John's wort years ago for depression but had no luck at all with it.

I strongly encourage you to get your thyroid levels checked out since it runs in your family. *If* you have any imbalance with it, it can cause all sorts of mood disorders. My family has a history of thyroid problems as well, so I keep a good watch on mine.

I'm so glad you've found us and are already getting some support here!

percycat

Nanners
Elite Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 14995
   Posted 8/19/2008 2:03 PM (GMT -7)   
Ooh I agree get that Thyroid checked out. I was Hyperthyroid in 2004 and it made me so jittery and anxious. I hated it. But once I got on the meds for it, I began to feel much better.

I have occasional anxiety/panic. I take Xanax for it, the lowest dose they have .25mg. If I catch my anxiety right at the beginning and take my Xanax, I am able to stop it in its tracks. Hope you get feeling better soon.
Been living with Crohn's Disease for 32 years.  Currently on Asacol, Prilosec 60 mg, Estrace, Prinivil, Diltiazem, Percoset prn for pain and Calcium.  Resections in 2002 and 2005.  Recently diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and doing tests to see if I have Inflammatory Arthritis or AS.


nervymeg
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 2721
   Posted 8/19/2008 10:18 PM (GMT -7)   

Hi!

Definately get that thyroid checked out. It can make a world of difference to get on medication for that. I understand that you don't have health insurance, do you have any "free" clinics where you live? I'm fortunate that I can get most tests done for free, downside is I have to wait. Boo!

I've tried a lot of herbal types iof remedies, and yes they do work for general stress, but when the big ones hit I ned something stronger medicationwise. I think it is good to incorporate these things into our lives though. Keeps us balanced..or so they say tongue

Please let us know how you go, we really support each other here.

Meg


Co-moderator Anxiety/Panic
Panic Attack Survivor
Weekend Warrior Princess
 


stkitt
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 8/20/2008 2:44 AM (GMT -7)   

Good Morning,

Well here is anxiety at work for you.  I am up at 4 AM on the site which is for me my own special therapy.  I loved to be able to help others so here I am. shocked

Yes, please do get the thyroid checked when you can.  It is another possible cause for anxiety. Some anxiety can be good for us but to much is not.  If you find your self being over whelmed here is another of my favorite suggestions and it does work. wink

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."

Try to distract yourself from what is going on inside you. Look at your surroundings. See the other people around you. .They are with you, not against you.

When the panic subsides, let your body go loose, take a deep breath, and go on with your day. Remember, each time you cope with panic and anxiety, you reduce your fear.

Gentle Hugs
Kitt


 

Kitt, Moderator: Anxiety/Panic & Depression
& GERD  Forums
*~*
http://www.healingwell.com/donate *~*
Not a mental health professional of any kind
It is health that is real wealth and not pieces of gold and silver.~Mahatma Gandhi~
Clickable Link: Anxiety-Panic Resources


Tormented
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 8/20/2008 7:52 AM (GMT -7)   
Thanks for the suggestin Meg. I didn't even think about trying a "free Clinic" I will definitely call around see what would be involoved for me to have some bloodwork done at one of them. If I can get part of the problem taken care of that easily then that makes me feel alot better. :-)

Right now I am in the path the Tropical Storm Fay so I am a little on edge because my boss hasn't sent us home yet and I have to drive a combined 30 miles a day and that involves crossing 2 bridges so I am not really thrilled with that but hopefully they wont make us come in tomorrow. I really want to be home preparing my home for possible weather damage. :-(

But I want to thank everyone for being such a tremedous help. Just coming onto the forum and reading what has been posted is helping me to calm my nerves. Not sure why other than it shows help and control aren't impossible.

percycat
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 1952
   Posted 8/20/2008 7:54 AM (GMT -7)   
Tormented,

Good luck in dealing with the weather. I hope you'll not have any problems from Fay.

percycat

thirstyforchrist
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 416
   Posted 8/20/2008 9:24 AM (GMT -7)   
Tourmented,
Oh honey, you will be alright. I know how it feels for family and friends to just blow it off, and act like you can stop it. And to try and make you feel guilty for getting help. You are an important person and you deserve to be helped. It will not mean you are crazy, crazy people dont get help because they have no clue they are crazy, right? Do try to find a free clinic to go to. Is there any government assistance you can get where you are? I would love to see you be able to go to a doctor and maybe even a therapist. You will make it and if you go on meds it doesn't mean tht you are weak. You have to be strong to ask for help in the first place. And if you feel that you'll get flak from your mom, you dont have to tell her. I learned the hard way that you cant always depend on your family for support. They think they know everything about you and that you are just faking it. But it is real. And I understand your feelings of being scared of going on meds. If you have a good doctor though, you can express your concern and they should give you good solid advice and tell you to call them if you feel worse. It's very hard but you can win the fight against this anxiety monster! We are all here for you. Keep posting. And do be careful in the storm. I can imagine the anxiety that must cause. We are here for you honey. love to you!
Rachel
 " When you feel like you're alone in your sadness, and no one in this whole world cares, and you want to get away from the madness, you just call my name and I'll be there..."   Third Day


Tormented
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 8/21/2008 6:58 PM (GMT -7)   
so I stayed home today out of the weather and I had a pretty good day. The only problem I had was when I started thinking about the "what it's" and then I found myself getting anxious. I quickly found something to keep me occupied and it helped. My question for youguys is does that happen to you? You're having a great day with someone you love and your happiness seems to trigger the anxiety of "what if".

nervymeg
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 2721
   Posted 8/21/2008 7:24 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi,
 
Ahh the dreaded "what if's". I still get them and I find the best thing to do is to challenge the thought as soon as it arrives. For example, "what if this bump on leg is cancer?" (or whatever your mind throws up at you!) I try and rationalise. How likely is it that this cancer? Has it happened before? Can I do anything about it her, now today? The naswer is usually no.
 
"what if's" can only ruin our day if we start believing them. Sure it might be wise to make an appointment to see the doctor to get the bump checked, but other than that continuing to worry about it is to lose our power over our thoughts and ruin our day.
 
When the negative thought comes up, just gently push it away, keep doing this until the thought stops taking hold. If it really won't let go, try writing it down, putting things on paper can help us get perspective.
 
I hope this has helped you a little. Take care, stay indoors and don't let the "what if's" take over. You are in control turn
 
Meg
Co-moderator Anxiety/Panic
Panic Attack Survivor
Weekend Warrior Princess
 

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