I know how you feel. I am 35 years old and ive dealt with mild anxiety for the last four years. However, Ive noticed that its gotten worse in the last year. The last few months its gotten worse than ever. I get extremely anxious and I panic. So, Ive realized its definitely progressed into a worse condition. I think my problem is I didnt take it seiously and get help back when I was diagnosed. I was also diagnosed with PTSD and Major clinical depression. However, I didnt feel bad and i functioned well....until recently. So, it does get worse if left untreated. Ativan is a good idea. I know you dont want to take meds, but if it helps then it may be necessary. Just be cautious and take it as prescribed. If the Ativan isnt working, ask your doctor about switching you to something else that may be more helpful to you. Find something thats an outlet for you...a hobby..activities that relax you. I do alot of writing, journaling, and I try to stay on a regular exercise routine. That seems to help somewhat. Sometimes when Im real anxious, I talk to someone I trust and confide in them how im feeling. Sometimes it helps to just get it off your chest. But i am a big believer that meds help. Im going to get back on mine. Good luck!
I have SOOO much to say, but limited time, so you both can message me if you want (ill be in vacation for the next 2 weeks though). I have been diagnosed with several anxiety disorders, generalized, PTSD, panic, OCD, etc. For now ill mention some things that helped me quickly.
Eliminating caffeine completely. If you drink a lot of it, wean off so you don't get headaches and other symptoms of withdrawal.
Sleep well. Try to get at least 6-8 hours of sleep each night, more if you need. Lack of sleep can make anxiety worse.
Cut back on sugar. That can make us jittery and nervous like caffeine.
Deep Breathing. These exercises can reduce stress, anxiety, panic, and help you sleep better. Google it for instructions.
Balanced diet and at least light exercise can also reduce anxiety.
Self Help Books. From panic to power by Lucinda Bassett is one of my favorites, I also like The idiots guide to anxiety.
Support forums like this. Talking to these wonderful people has brought me out of panic attacks! Go through old posts and read the ones you can relate to.
See your doctor ASAP. They can rule out things that can cause anxiety (over active thyroid, etc). And if needed, give you medication to treat your symptoms and recommend a therapist to help you with this.
Therapy therapy therapy!!! Even if you don't have insurance, there are free programs through cities, local support groups, etc. in my opinion, anxiety medication only helps with the symptoms, they can't cure the problem. Therapy has helped people get off meds. Good luck to you!
Hi, Greg! I have also experinced this problem, on and off with anxiety. I always try to use my own car to go anywhere, just so I know I have it and can leave at any time. I remind myself that I do not HAVE to stay ANYWHERE and that I am free to leave. Work is easier for me using this technique, and I make it through my whole shift 99% of the time. It helps that i can see the doors from where I work. Traffic is more complicated. That's when I have to use my relaxation and coping skills: calm, deep, slow breathing, soothing music, and roll down the windows so I can hear what's going on outside as well as have fresh air. If i am at a complete standstill, I might even step out of my car for a moment to stretch (not leave my car). I also have several games on my phone I can play, or I can call someone who makes me laugh. I hope this is helpful. Blessings - Blu