Hello first I guess I should start off by giving a quick rundown of my illness.. I have had panic attacks, general anxiety and ocd since 2003 so it has been awhile, they started where I knew what my attacks were from snow, heavy rain, at the beginning I thought I was dying of everything because I became a hypochondriac. I started going to a Psych Center in 2006 which I see a psychiatrist every few months and a clinical social worker once a week. I am very afraid of taking medicine, not just meds for this but medication of ANY type. As I learned the panic and phobias tend to increase, I went from everything of not being able to swallow my foods, fears of going to hell, you name it, but in August 2007 things seemed to be getting worse, my anxiety attacks were coming more and more often, and very severe, driving in heat was one just to name a few, so I finally decided to try medication. Since the start my pdoc prescribed Xanax 0.25 which I rarely took, but in August 2007 I started to take Zoloft at the lowest dose..when I started to take it my life went from bad to worse in a heartbeat, I CONSTANTLY had panic attacks, which has caused me to become agoraphobic, I am now on disability, no job, and I don't know how to describe it but the panic attacks were so bad I did not know how my parents were going to drive me down to the corner of the street let alone get to the hospital which is only 5 miles away if that. I went to the area psychiatric hospital, they took me off of zoloft and put me on effexor and prescribed Klonopin 2mg. Tried that, nothing same thing, the most extreme panic attacks I ever had in my life (and never want to experience again)bad, I stopped taking the Effexor and slowly felt better, still agoraphobic, still have the origional problems, but I can atleast stay in my house without constant panic attacks, I do still take the Klonopin, but I do not want a high dose, I refuse, so I take .25mg daily. This past spring I slowy started to push myself and I can now go to "safe places" either with my mom or girlfriend, I can also drive by myself to places close by that I feel safe with, I even accomplished on nice days driving from my house to my parents using back roads, but for me these are all accomplishments non the less.. My anxiety still gets bad, even at home I have alot of general anxiety, depression, the therapist says I block myself from the world so as soon as any problems from the outside world get in I freak out..
Here is where I need help.. My Dr and Therapist said I NEED medication and are pretty much saying if I don't take it I cannot come to counseling (which I rely on to get by ALOT) talking always helps, but they say with all my problems that I def NEED it.. I won't lie I am scared to death! My question is.. with what I described about the problems I had when taking the SSRI's, are these normal problems (maybe my fears of medication going haywire) or was this a serious problem that happens to people when taking SSRI's.. I read up and get conflicting information on it, U of Maryland says when starting an SSRI it is common to experience intense anxiety at the beginning and to take a Benzopine to help, but then I read WebMD and it says to contact your dr. immediately if you experience increased anxiety (which I never jumped at flies before). I am just wondering when people start taking an SSRI is this normal? One other quick question.. my psychologist said that since it seems the ssri's are not working she wants me to start taking Risperdal?? Anyone ever heard of this type of treatment? Maybe I am Bipolar and that is why the SSRI's were causing such a problem? any recommendations on a good SSRI to try? Somehow I just get the feeling whatever they give me is just going to make my quality of life worse than it is..Any help you can give me would be sooooo greatly appreciated!! Thanks so much for listening