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808293 tn?1238605783

Anxiety relapses...

Hey everyone, I was wondering about anyone's experiences with anxiety relapses..
I will make this quck:
A little over a month ago, I had a health scare that lead to my first anxiety attack...grew up in a family of Panic Disorder sufferers, and was always scared to have the affliction too, so when my first anxiety attack happened, it scared the living h*ll out of me!
I suffered from 24/7 anxiety and obsessive thoughts about anxiety, until I decided to seek therapy and go on meds. I have been on both for just over 2 weeks. Since then, I will have a few days where I felt good; anxiety wasn't nearly as bad, the obsessive thoughts about anxiety didn't come as often, and I could stay positive for most of the day...I guess I started to think I was "cured", even if logically I knew I really wasn't. When the relapses happen, I feel terrible, like I am never going to get better, and that all the hard work I have done has been for naught...then, I talk to my therapist, and I do my breathing/relaxation techniques, try to look on the positive side of things, and then I have 2 great days where I have no problems, then BANG, I wake up in the middle of the night from anxiety and I just want to give up...I get so frustrated...
So, I know I haven't been dealing with this as long as a lot of people, and I know that the SSRI medications usually take 4-6 weeks to even kick in...I was just wondering if anybody else out there went through something similiar..I feel like I am somehow causing this, even though I am really trying to counter negative self-talk and obsessive thinking...any advice, or words of wisdom would be greatly appreciated!
4 Responses
714201 tn?1247572018
I also know how awful relapses can be. I had my first panic attack one year ago this April. I'd just like to say that, from my perspective, you're a very lucky person in that you know it's anxiety that's causing your symptoms. For almost six months after my initial panic attack, I had every medical test in the book done, trying to figure out what this mysterious dizziness / faintness / nausea / and muscle tension was being caused by. So, I think you're already a step ahead of most people, which is crucial in that you can begin coping with it earlier.
          As for the relapses, I know how frustrating they can be. During them, you feel just as bad sometimes as you did during the initial attack. What I find helpful is believing that there's value in the struggle. In other words, I know that I'm a stronger person now than I was a year ago because I was forced to be. You either crawl up into a ball and feel sorry for yourself or you find a way to live that makes the condition most bearable. I have more respect for myself now than I ever have only because I've been put to the test as they say, and yet, despite how lousy I feel some days, I continue to go to school, have an active social life, and hold down a full-time job. I know you'll be alright. Just hang in there and keep posting on this site. It's helped me so much over the past year. Good luck.
Avatar universal
This isn't necessarily a relapse -- these meds almost never cure anything, they just make it easier.  The original purpose was to help with therapy, since it's really hard to do therapy when you're really depressed or anxious, and then quit when therapy helped.  Of course, that doesn't happen either in real life all that often, so we end up on meds for years.  Alas.  So don't expect a cure from a med; if it happens, great, but keep with the therapy and enjoy feeling better even if you don't feel perfect.
808293 tn?1238605783
Yes, this site has been a Godsend.
Yeah, I am trying to remain positive, trying to take it day by day, and realize I am learning something new everyday.
I have been journaling, and on top of keeping track of my moods/levels/diet/sleep and what-have-you, I am also keeping a log of all the things I am learning because of my anxiety. It is at least a small help, to see a positive side of it..
I just need, I guess, to learn how to NOT worry about it, which is no small task...I would ask for advice, but I guess if any of us knew the answer, we wouldn't be on this website ;)
808293 tn?1238605783
yeah, I understand that meds aren't a magic cure...for me, if at least to take away the constant anxiousness I feel, I know my work in this is what is really going to be the thing that helps me, re-learning bad behaviors I have picked up, learning to cope with and let go of the anxiety if and when it rear's it's ugly head...
It's just hard, because I feel like I am not the person I was just a few weeks ago...and then I have quick snapshots of who that person was, and then suddenly he is gone again, and it's so incredibly frustrating...
Therapy, relaxing techniques, and cognitive behavioral changes are the things I am putting my money on...as well as proper diet and exercise.
I know everybody want's to be "fixed" by tomorrow...and I am no exception...but I am learning that this is a long road a head of me...
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