SRS Anxiety Disorder?

Discussion in 'On Topic' started by DTR rex, Jan 5, 2009.

  1. DTR rex

    DTR rex New Member

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    So last night I had a panic attack apparently.

    It was a very scary experience for someone like me who is constantly in control all of the time. I have had anxiety issues and agoraphobia since I was younger (23 now) but it was never anything too bad and I could easily deal with it as it came.

    I am not sure why last night was any different but I had a full-blown panic attack and I have not been the same since (about 15 hours later).
    I called my mom and she has panic attack problems too and has been dealing with for years.

    I was looking online and it seems that I exhibit several associated problems of anxiety disorder. I tend to get test anxiety during finals time, get incredibly anxious in situations that allow me "no escape", and since last nights attack I have been pretty messed up.

    I have been really stressed out with random stuff lately like finishing school, a wisdom tooth procedure, finding a job, finding time to spend with the g/f, bills, my relationship with God, etc... etc...
    But i've been in much more stressful situations and always pulled through without physical symptoms of the panic attack and the mental symptoms of feeling like you're completely losing your mind/mental health.
    Despite my anxiety issues I am someone who always has their shit together and is strong. I experienced the feeling of "going crazy" during my panic attack, which I guess is normal, but I just don't want this to spiral into something bigger like depression or a mental disorder.
    I've had a cold for a while now and I think the dizziness and hard breathing associated with the cold is just making it worse.


    Do you guys have any advice on how to approach this and deal with it? My mom is going to give me some reading material on dealing with anxiety and I have a doctors appointment tomorrow just to be safe. I am a natural worrier so chances are I am making this a bigger deal than it should be, but I can't help it.
    All of these feeling associated with my panic attack are pretty foreign to me so it's pretty scary and I am afraid it will turn into something worse.
     
  2. GTP

    GTP New Member

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    Getting into a "fuck it", no regrets mentality is hard but it is what I found really helps with anxiety. I would suggest stay away from medication. Oh, and when you realize the physical manifestations of anxiety lead to panic/panic attacks and further bouts of anxiety, it kind of helps a bit to.
     
  3. DTR rex

    DTR rex New Member

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    I really want to stay away from any prescription meds.

    Anxiety disorder runs in my family, as well as depression. I really don't think I have depression though because I exhibit just about zero symptoms of it aside from the anxiety.
    I don't hate life... In fact I enjoy it quite a bit
    I am always optimistic about the future... but not always about the "now"
    I don't have low self-esteem... In fact, I am told quite often I think "too" highly of myself, lol
    I don't have a desire to sit around my house doing nothing... In fact, I have to always be doing something and keeping busy.
    I just can't stand how the panic attacks make me feel I am going crazy and make me temporarily think I am going to develop horrible depression overnight or something.

    The anxiety though is what's killing me. Like I said, it's always been there, but always been manageable and recently it has passed that threshold of being easily manageable.

    I am sick of walking into a room and HAVING to know where the nearest exit is "just incase".
    I am sick of freaking out and getting horrible anxiety when I have to take an especially difficult exam.
    I am sick of every time I have nausea or feel ill I always assume the worst and freak out about it making it worse than it should be.

    I USED to be really good about deep breathing exercises, meditation, martial arts, working on having a strong relationship with God, etc... But now I just don't have the time and my desire for those things is extremely prevalent but I just seem to get it done.

    For example 3 week ago my friend and I got stuck in an elevator in my apartment complex. We got in, the door shut, and it wouldn't move and the door would not open again.
    Immediately I started freaking out.... Heavy breathing, sweating, nausea, panic, etc... And my friend is just standing there saying "man, this sucks, we're going to miss the 4th quarter of the game".
    So here we are, it no real danger, stuck in the elevator and my friend is calm and just pissed out missing the game while I am basically dying on the inside looking for anyway possible to escape.

    Luckily we both spend a good amount of time lifting in the gym and are big dudes so we basically just ripped the elevator door open and got out after 2min.
    I probably would have worked myself up into fainting or throwing up if we were in there for 5min though.
     
  4. 2500

    2500 Guest

    GTP pretty much summed it up. Stay away from meds. The more you care about your anxiety the worse it is. If you don't care about it, it tends to be better. And like he said also, the more you know how it works, why it does it, and the physical symptoms and feelings of it, the easier it will be.

    Chances are you experienced depersonalization, a dizzy, lightheaded, kinda, seeing the world from behind your eyes kinda feeling. Totally normal and harmless, but, the effects could last from before your actual attack to long after. That was my worst symptom. That and heart palps, hypochondria real bad, and a constant worry about my health.

    What cured me was hypnosis. I suffered pretty bad and I'm sure a quick search can find some pretty long posts I've made about my condition. Severe panic attacks daily, about 7 a day, in the ER freaking out every night, loads of med bills, and in the end, once I learned what panic attacks were and that nothing can harm me, I went to get hypnotised, and after 1 session I never had one again. Maybe 1-2 a year for over 5 years now. Going from 7-10 a day for a long time, thats pretty good with me.

    Now in the rare event I have a bad panic attack, I'll FEEL the panic come in and say "OK, this isn't something new, lets see how scary it'll try to be this time." And, just the mental message I'm giving myself of almost, taunting the panic, and talking down to it, helps greatly. And never try to "fight" one away. You're giving it too much credit, and your, relating negativity to a panic attack. Who cares if you have one? They only last a few minutes if you just let them go. Let em come, see how funky they can feel, laugh at em a little, and let em go. The less you care, the easier this becomes. Try hypnosis, cut out caffeine, and do some walking. A panic attack is just a release of adrenaline from the "flight or fight" response. Your body is falsly sensing danger, and is rushing your body with adrenaline so you can either flight (get the hell away from danger) or fight (for your life against the danger). Well the problem is, there really isn't any danger, and, you're not burning off any of the adrenaline, and it's being stored, which can make you jittery and feel "panicky" for longer than your panic attack lasts.
     
  5. DTR rex

    DTR rex New Member

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    I used to have that "fuck it" mentality but now I worry about EVERYTHING... I am a chronic worrier it seems.

    What do you mean by physical manifestations of anxiety?
     
  6. DTR rex

    DTR rex New Member

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    Yeah, that "depersonalization" is what messed me up the most. The breathing, sweats, feeling like I was dying, etc... was scary, but it only lasted 15min. It was the after feeling of feeling not like myself and like I was going insane that really freaked me out.
    And yeah, just like you, I am a hypochondriac and constantly worry about my health too... It's rather ridiculous actually. Coming from a family that has cancer running in it, and me having a phobia of being sick just makes it worse.


    One question though... You say you kinda taunt the panic and take it on and talk down to it... but then you say not to fight it? Isn't that fighting it, or by fighting it do you mean something else?

    I spoke to my mom who has suffered from panic attacks for years and she was saying something similar to you. If you feel it coming on just go into a private area, sit down, and say "come on bitch, lets do this!" and then just focus on breathing and knowing nothing will happen to you and it will soon pass.

    Thanks for this post btw, it was quite helpful.
     
  7. DTR rex

    DTR rex New Member

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    I know it's a huge detail... but I forgot to mention that last week I got a phone call from my sister @ 1am saying my dad had a heart attack.

    He's okay now, but he has heart problems and is overweight so when I got that call I was CERTAIN he was going to die that evening.

    My mom was saying that in addition to other anxiety and stress, a very stressful event can show up AS a panic attack several days or even a week after the event occured and this is some what typical :dunno:
     
  8. Genghis.Tron

    Genghis.Tron New Member

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    From what you say, it seems like you also have generalized anxiety disorder (internet diagnosis ftw). I think that for this you need to take meds or deal with how you are. Panic disorder can be controlled through changing thoughts but the fact that you say that you are the kind of guy that's in control is exactly what leads you to have these attacks. The moment you seem to think about the fact that you might lose control, then you begin to feel bad and it kind of goes worse and worse in a matter of seconds, which is your panic attack.

    The problem is that you might have 2 disorders which aren't treated in the same way. Panic disorder can be controlled through exposition and cognitive therapy but you need to avoid taking meds so that you are exposed to your physical symptoms. If you are insured, the amount of therapy needed could be covered (it could be a matter of 10-12 weeks).

    Some online guides have been (scientifically) shown to work with these disorders, I'll try to track it down so that I can link it here.
     
  9. 2500

    2500 Guest

    Huge detail deff makes this all make more sense.

    As for the fighting it part, I'll clarify.

    Your mom is EXACTLY right. By taunt it, I'll say "OK panic attack, lets see it, lets see how you're going to try and fuck me up this time. bring it on, make it worse than the last time!"

    By not fighting it, I mean, don't say "OMG, i feel kinda dizzy, omg, please don't have a panic attack, please stop please please please, I don't want another one, omg, what if one happens, please, i don't want a panic attack." I mean don't fight against having one.
     
  10. GTP

    GTP New Member

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    The days I realize that worrying doesn't do shit, are the days I feel great. Keeping myself busy/around others increases my odds of not thinking about random shit.

    By physical manifestations I mean you should recognize the symptoms of anxiety/panic and work towards understanding it can never hurt you.
     
  11. DTR rex

    DTR rex New Member

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    Exactly.

    I am one of those people that always has to be in control and always has to have an exit strategy. I always prefer to drive rather than let friends/family drive.... I hate planes because I have no control over what might happen, I hate being sick (especially throwing up... it's basically a phobia) because that entails having no control over my body.

    I am obsessed with only being in situations where I can control what I am doing and I need to always have an exit strategy. I hate waiting around in crowded areas (though I still go to bars and clubs somewhat often) and I hate being in traffic on the highway because I am essentially "stuck" with no where to go... You know what I am saying?

    It is a slight hinder to my life, but it's something I deal with. I still drive all the time, still go to bars, I still fly in planes, I still take a subway nearly everyday, etc...
    But the panic attacks are what is scaring me. I've had two in the last 6 months, about 3-4 months apart from one another.

    As for the guides.... As I said my mom has the same problem as me (but she's much severe than I am) and she spent like $1,000 on special books, workbooks, and cd's to (1) help control a panic attacks and (2) help keep anxiety at a low.
     
  12. DTR rex

    DTR rex New Member

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    Ok... that is exactly what my mom says... Thanks for clarifying.

    Sorry about leaving that "huge" detail out, lol.
    Yeah, my dad has heart trouble and is overweight and it stresses me out a lot because I basically wait for the phone call from my family telling me he died... I know it sounds messed up, but I am constant worrier.

    That night when my sister called and said "dad had a heart attack and is unresponsive" it literally felt like I was hit by a gravel truck. I do well in high stress situations so I gather my shit and took off to the hospital, but my mom said that something like that can EASILY cause a panic attack a week later when it happens to someone with high anxiety and you're dealing with other stuff like work, school, finances, getting a surgery procedure, etc...
     
  13. DTR rex

    DTR rex New Member

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    Thanks.

    Reading about it and understanding it definitely helps. The first time I had a panic attack I didn't know what was wrong. I seriously thought I was having a deadly asthma attack or a stroke.
    I am very physically healthy so I was sure it couldn't be a heart attack (which is what most people think it is).
     
  14. 2500

    2500 Guest

    We share sooo many similarities only I cut them out, lol.

    I will not drive with someone, and if I do, I am the WORST back seat driver.
    I will not fly on a plane because I'm not in control
    I will not ride a rollercoaster because I'm not in control
    I'm terrified of throwing up because I can't control it
    I hate being sick because I'm not controlling it
    I'm scared of dying because I can't stop or control it
     
  15. Spaceering

    Spaceering I bite.

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    the intensity of these fears that you have because you are not in control can be lowered a bit.


    for example, throwing up, dying, are all natural experiences everyone has. why be so afraid of not controlling something natural. do you really think you can defy nature?


    I myself am far from afraid of dying. In fact I am more afraid of living for some reason.
     
  16. 2500

    2500 Guest

    It's more so the meaning and uncertainty. If I eat some funky ass food and puke, fine. If I puke for no reason that I can see, I'll worry it's because I'm dying right then, or that I have some disease. It's the uncertainty that I'm afraid of. As with dying. If I KNEW there was life after death, I wouldn't be scared. But, the not knowing is the scary part.
     
  17. Genghis.Tron

    Genghis.Tron New Member

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    There's the problem that popular psychology and "real" psychology are not the same. I was talking about trying to find something scientifically supported. It's up to you though.
     
  18. DTR rex

    DTR rex New Member

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    I went to the doctor today for a couple problems... My asthma has been bad lately due to a cold and I told him about my anxiety and he prescribed me zoloft. I told him no way, no how... I am not getting on Rx meds for it.
    I am not depressed, so I refuse to take an anti-depressant for anxiety.

    So in the end, the visit was pretty unhelpful, but he did give me Xanax to use after a panic attack to make the post-attack symptoms easier to deal with.

    I am going to read a couple books, and do the workbooks/cd's and hopefully that will help get me in control of the anxiety.
    My mom told me to pick up some "St. Johns Wart" because it has helped her... so we'll see if that helps too.
     
  19. DTR rex

    DTR rex New Member

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    It's good to know someone else shares these issues so similarly.
     
  20. 2500

    2500 Guest

    Yeah, there are loads of good books out there. "From Panic to Power" is a good one. Also might want to think about "Attacking Anxiety and Depression." It's the program, CDs, DVDs, and workbook. It's supposed to work great. It's pricey, about 500 bucks-ish. I have it, but have only made it through lesson 1 so far. Her voice is very relaxing, and I had the problem of doing the lessons at night before bed, and I'd always fall asleep, lol. I hear theres a huge success rate with the program though, and theres a forum also. You don't need the program to join. I'm currently banned cuz, I kinda snapped on all the happy la-la-land people on zoloft and paxil who lost reality and float around on cloud 9. But, there are alot of great people there too.
     
  21. Genghis.Tron

    Genghis.Tron New Member

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    Anti-depressants are the best long-term treatment for anxiety actually. Benzodiazepine (such as Xanax) is a much riskier treatment because it can only be used short term because it leads to dependance, can be overdosed, and you can build a tolerance to it.
     
  22. 2500

    2500 Guest

    You have NO idea what you're talking about. Anti-depressants are the WORST long term treatment, because they COVER the problems, they don't FIX anything! If you choose anti-depressants as your treatment, you WILL be on them forever. That does NOT sound like the best option. And you can build a tolerance to those also. Please don't talk unless you know what you're talking about.
     
  23. GTP

    GTP New Member

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    It helps when you aren't alone :mamoru:
     
  24. Genghis.Tron

    Genghis.Tron New Member

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    He was talking about the visit to his doctor, I replied that for a pharmaceutical treatment, anti-depressants are the best option... If there's a comorbid problem with generalized anxiety, then it could be beneficial to get meds for this since there's not much you can do against that as far as psychological treatment goes. For panic disorder, there's still therapy which usually consists of interoceptive exposition but then benzodiazepine would render that kind of treatment pretty much useless. In my opinion, there's no psychologically sound reason not to take anti depressants if the symptoms are important, since symptom reduction could help with further psychological progress (apart from the benzo stuff I talked earlier)
     
  25. 2500

    2500 Guest

    You can't "test" for anxiety or chemical imbalances, and it's only THOUGHT to be the cause of anxiety and depression and panic attacks. Ever notice the commercials? "it MAY be due to a chemical imbalance." The Dr.s aren't even sure its caused by a chemical imbalance, but yet, since they think it might be, they'll go ahead and give you all these drugs anyways. Talk therapy, knowledge, hypnosis, CBT are all the best ways to deal with anxiety.

    My friend is agoraphobic, hasn't left his house really in 5 years. he has a few mile radius, but thats only been in the last year. the previous 4, he could make it to the mailbox, but thats it. He has been on every medication in the book, hes been brought to a psych ward, he got electro-shock therapy, nothing worked. he's never tried hypnosis or talk therapy, and hes no better now than the day it started. I even gave him the name and number of my hypnotherapist, and asked her if she would go to his house since he couldn't leave and she said yes. Oh well, can lead a horse to water but ya can't force him to drink.
     

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