Posted 5/30/2013 12:47 PM (GMT -7)
Hi all, yes I am here because I had a major anxiety attack this Feb. I am 32, female, a young professional at a dot com. I have a very NOT stressful and relatively happy life. But always have been an anxious person since I was little (always get so nervous before boarding a plane), I guess a total anxiety attack was just waiting to happen...and it did.
It was the most scary thing ever, I was so scared with messed up thoughts in my mind. I broke down, I cried and when my mom came into my room...I begged her in tears to save me. I will forever remember that part...it was so dramatic. My mom, however, is very calm and wise person. She did not freak out and next day she took me to see a good doctor. Where I was prescribed with 10mg Lexapro and Xanax.
It's been 4 months since I am recovering from that super scary event....and I have picked up a few VERY valuable lessons along the way.
1. If you have questions. DO NOT Google. ASK your doctor.
People online are sharing all kinds of very personal stories that might make you even more anxious. I got my major anxiety attack BECAUSE I was googling some illness that I THOUGHT I have have! IT FREAKED ME OUT. Bang, just like that, a full-blown anxiety attack with tears and shaking and all that nasty package. I told my doctor about this...he smiled at me and said "When you have questions, ask me. NEVER ask Google." Yup, lesson learned.
Tips: If you want to Google, try using positive keywords. ex: How I beat Anxiety, How to promote positive thinking, Tricks to feel happy, How to relax... etc. :) This helps a lot, too!
2. Take the medicine your doctor prescribed, on time! Don't be scared.
This was my second mistake. At the beginning when I was feeling anxious, I was holding one Xanax pill in my hand for one freaking hour just trying to decide if I should take it. Silly me. This is another good reason NOT to Google stuff. Because somehow every link pops up about Xanax is how bad it is, side effects, blah blah. It's not helping...it only makes things worse.
Tips: Here's a advise from my doctor. Look at anxiety/panic as headache. Take Xanax like you would take Advil/Tylenol for headache. Don't try to live with the "pain" although it will go away at some point. Be nice to yourself. Any drugs can be bad if you abuse them, but when your body needs some help...give it some help. If you have questions about side effects, please refer to the #1 advice in this post. :p
3. Heat packs on your upper stomach and chest.
This is one magical trick I picked up from my friend. She is an experienced masseuse who also learned a lot of....well I don't know how to say those traditional therapy in English since my native language is Mandarin (I am from Taiwan).
Anyways, human body has a few spots that relate to different emotions. :) The spots that brings the feeling of safety and calmness, is your upper stomach and chest. Those two spots must be kept toasty warm when you are scared. It works really well, and sometimes I call it my Xanax replacement. I recommend all of you to try it out. It's not just good to calm you down, also amazingly comfortable that it helps falling asleep.
4. You will be OK.
It's been 4 months since I've been on Lexapro. I saw people complain about it online, too. To be honest, I feel absolutely NOTHING taking it. My doctor asked me if I felt anything. Well...nope. He smiled again and said "Right, just like taking a vitamin." I can't agree with him more. Everyone reacts to medicine differently. I stopped looking at side effects online. When I have doubts I picked up the phone and asked my doc. Anxiety disorder is nothing you beat overnight. There will be up and downs. Don't get frustrated! When it comes, just wink at it and say "pfft, here we go again". The most important thing you must know is, you will be OK. No matter how bad you feel right now, it's just the anxiety talking. Go put the heating pack on your chest and stomach. :) If too bad, take a Xanax and give it 30 mins to kick in. Everything is gonna be ok. You will beat it eventually.
Let's kick anxiety's ass.