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Avatar universal

28 year old woman struggling with physical symptoms

Hi all,

    I'm new around here and have been struggling with physical anxiety symptoms for around a month and a half now. I don't usually reach out in situations like this, but it has become such a struggle that I felt like posting in a forum with people that had some of the same issues and concerns as me to validate what I'm going through and help ease my mind and what I'm enduring. It seems like my "trigger" was going on vacation with my significant other at the end of August. I had not been on vacation for a few years and had just gotten out of another relationship about 4-5 months prior. As soon as I got to the destination, I felt dizzy, nauseous and very "on edge". I started thinking thoughts like "what if something goes wrong or I get ill while I'm here? What if something serious happens? I'm 12 hours from home!" I woke up everyday assessing how I felt as soon as I opened my eyes and thinking about it throughout the day. It made the entire time very unpleasant. I figured as soon as I returned home it would end. It actually got worse! As soon as I returned to work I found myself dizzy, getting chills (almost flu like symptoms, which ended me in the ER once, doc said seemed more anxiety related), numbness and tightness in hands, legs, face, facial and body muscle spasms and extreme tightness in muscles and/or muscle weakness like I just ran a marathon followed by bouts of extreme fatigue. Also moments of confusion, mental fog and almost a sense of derealization (like I forget things easily, forget what I'm supposed to be doing, etc). Lately I have tightness in the chest that effects my breathing and makes me lightheaded- happens several times throughout the day and I get scared I'll pass out sometimes, especially when I go to talk when my chest is tight. It feels like I'm gasping for air during the conversation. I've seen my primary car twice, all bloodwork, Lyme titer, EKG, blood sugar, reflexes, lungs, vitamin levels, organ functions normal. Also saw a neurologist that said my numbness and tingling and other complaints that could be neuro come and go so they cannot be any serious neurological issues, that it sounds like irritated nervous due to anxiety and only found my spine to be out of alignment (going to try a chiropractor) and said to call if any further issues. Only thing that was found amidst all of this was a possible vestibular issue that caused vertigo from blockage of my right ear canal which has since been resolved. I just take Flonase for eustacian tube dysfunction and do exercises to correct the "vestibular injury". I wake up everyday lately dreading how I feel, sometimes with a lot of difficulty getting out of bed and worrying consistently throughout the day about how I feel, what will come next, etc. I'm getting married next September and am just concerned I will never feel like myself again. I was normal two months ago, I was in a good place and all was well. Now I'm struggling to get through every day. I am starting to see a therapist this coming Monday that specializes in CBT and my significant other is (of all things!!!) a therapist. I, of course, do not mix my anxiety with my relationship (even though I'm sure it weighs on it). I had issues with anxiety in the past, saw a therapist for about 7 months and beat it medication free. I'm committing myself to doing this again, but I've never had daily symptoms to this extreme. It's like flavor of the day with what I feel. I am rarely without some symptoms.

Has anyone had similar experiences? Physically? Emotionally? Any suggestions for dealing with it? I find myself so worried about so many health issues and trying to convince myself something "has to be wrong" or I'm going crazy or not going to see my wedding. Words of encouragement? Anything? Thank you all for your feedback, it's much appreciated.
31 Responses
Avatar universal
Yes, I understand what you're talking about. Most of us here on this forum understand. It does sound like anxiety to me.
I'm glad to hear you're starting therapy on Monday and also glad you will be seeing a chiropractor.
Were there a lot of problems in your last relationship? If so, that may have caused your anxiety to flare up. I know it's been months but anxiety can pop up if you have unresolved issues going on. You're also planning a wedding and as exciting as that can be, it can also be very stressful.
You're not alone. We do understand and we're to help you anyway we can.
Avatar universal
Thanks so much for the words of encouragement. Yes, in my previous relationship I was basically emotionally and financially responsible for the other person for 7 years. In my current relationship this isn't the case. We are very much equals in every way. I wonder sometimes if I was so used to the chaos of my previous relationship if my mind decided to simply create it's own chaos because it wasn't necessary for me to operate on that level any longer. Some days I feel like it's more under control that others, but I'm trying to take solace in the fact that even that is different from how I felt previously. I still focus a lot on my body and how I'm feeling, likely exacerbating the issues and symptoms, but things seem to dissipate very, VERY slowly. Plus any dizziness from my inner ear issue doesn't help in not perpetuating things! I'm just trying to take day by day. Have you had issues with daily physical symptoms? How bad? Would they alternate and come and go?
Avatar universal
Hi there, I'm a 31 year old female, I have two boys 5 and 21 months. I have been dealing with anxiety for a long time. But, after the birth of my second son, it hit an all time high! I've had all the above symptoms you've listed, minus the inner ear. As I am writing this I'm having chest pain, and have been freaking out about it all day! Health anxiety is an awful thing. I would definitely suggest trying an antidepressant medication. I was on one and got off because I thought I was better, but soon realized it was the med that was making me feel so good! I have a cousin who is a NP, and I have driven her crazy with questions! I think any big change in your life can trigger anxiety, and it sounds like you're going through a big change! Hang in there! Therapy didn't really work for me because they wanted to figure out why I had come to such a point in my life, and all I wanted was to talk about how to get over it! :) but, I do think all of your symptoms sound exactly like mine! Talk soon, k
Avatar universal
I was really wondering about your previous relationship. It makes a lot of sense now. Yes, we can sure get in to the "habit" of being stressed and anxious. Once that happens sometimes we just don't know how to get out of it. That's why I think therapy is really going to help you. It may not always be easy because you'll be bringing up some old stuff but it'll be worth it in the long run. I'm so happy for you! Finding a wonderful man and planning your wedding. Hopefully soon this anxiety will be gone. Therapy and getting your ear problem taken care of will do wonders for you. Hang in there, okay. Things will get better.
Avatar universal
Thanks for the response. Any responses help me feel less crazy than previously. As I type this I have occasional chills, almost flu like symptoms and basically feel like my head is a beach ball mixed with some dizziness. Mind you, I don't think any inner ear issues going on with me help, I think it simply kicks any health anxiety into high gear. I have symptoms everyday. They range from mild to moderate to severe at varying times throughout the day. However, no one symptom seems consistent, hence any health care professionals suspecting anxiety. I guess my struggle is convincing myself anxiety can't do all this and is has to be some serious physical issues. Do you find yourself doing that? Maybe having a productive and somewhat "normal" day (as much as possible with these issues) and then you'll get a flood of physical symptoms that debilitate and fatigue you and you start believing your symptoms are serious again and that you're basically dying? I feel so fatigued most days it's difficult to function.
Avatar universal
Hi remar, yes, I am hoping therapy will work to alleviate these physical issues as it has helped me in the past even though I was not experiencing physical symptoms very much with my anxiety at that time. The physical symptoms are completely new to me. I had to occasional weekly panic attach when I had my first battle with anxiety years ago, but this feel like I'm continuously ill in one way, shape or form all day, everyday. By the time I get home from work most nights I'm so wrecked all I have energy to do is get in bed and pass out. At night in particular my vision is fuzzy and blurry because it seems I can barely keep my eyes open. I know vestibular or inner ear issues effect light sensitivity and certain vision components, but it's above and beyond. I worry consistently about how it will be at work and what will happen if something happens to me there. I can, however, take solace in the fact that my fiancé and I work for the same company and most coworkers know about the relationship, so if anything were ever to happen, the word would travel quickly. It's just a daily battle with fatigue, visual disturbances, hearing disruptions (inner ear?) and a plethora of other symptoms (I call it flavor of the day!). Part of me is also thinking the inner ear thing kicked some health anxiety into high gear and maybe addressing that and my anxiety will resolve this sooner or later. It's just so difficult not knowing how to get through every day, being unsure of what you will be facing or enduring and how you fill function or even if you can. I'm praying this therapist can help me unravel some of these misnomers and put me on the path to healing. I understand and fully respect those who have tried medications to assist in alleviating their anxiety and issues. However, I'm just more of the type to rationalize that if I have the power to create this, I have the power to "un-create" it and I can do this. I get discouraged often, but I just fight to keep my head up and push on. The validation and encouragement help a lot, thank you!
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