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sever anxiety/agoraphobia/vertigo

Can anyone relate to me ??? I am so confused.  The beginning:  I was diagnosed with PPD in mid 2005 and was placed on Effexor 75mg.  After a year I decided to wean off of it to get pregnant.  After 6 long months I was effexor free.  I immediatly had a stuffy head feeling.  This progressed rather rapidly into what I think was an episode of disrealization ( dazed off for about 50 miles in car) that brought on a mild panic attack.  Then I was plagued by panic attacks while driving on the Interstate, later I couldnt drive anywhere. ( this was a span of 2-3 months).  Then I had constant blurry vision but two Opthamolgist informed me my vision was better than perfect.  I started then getting really dizzy(vertigo) all the time which kept me from going to stores.  Recently I started having bad migranes, but MRI came bad normal. My ears ring constantly ( its like I can hear the tv on but it isnt).   A long list of specialist and about a hundered mis-diagnoses later, I am still the same.   My general MD told me it could be Meneries but she didnt know.  I think I am losing my mind.  I am doing cognitive behavior thearpy which helps, but I feel so alone.  The doctors seem unconcerned that I am 27 yrs old, cant drive, cant shop, and just beg everynight to go back in time or let me die.  Please tell me I am not alone.
12 Responses
Avatar universal
this is classic panic disorder with agoraphobia.

you are definately NOT alone. i was homebound for 3+ months.

i been there. i'm about 70% back to a normal life.

i take klonopin, it's a safe drug, not an ssri that will give you side effects, this along with CBT and a therapist, i think would help you out alot. talk to your dr. about it. it took me forever to take any medication. i hated the idea, i was scared of it and i had previously delt with anxiety/panic for 9 years on my own. i missed out on alot of life for being stubborn.

you aren't alone. you just need the right help right now....it will get better.

make an appt. with a psychiatrist. i'm sure he'll agree with what i'm telling you. he/she may try to get you to take an ssri antidepressant. but tell him you heard some good things about klonopin.

and please don't read all the horror stories on the internet. they are all B.S. this is all about the quality of your life! so take action. your are not a victim! be a fighter!

God Bless
Jay
Avatar universal
Boy can I relate!  For as long as can remember, I have had some sort of GAD with panice attacks.  I was the little kid who would throw up before going to birthday parties or had to leave early because I had a headache but really I was so overwhelmed that I couldn't stay.  Off and on throughout my life I've struggled with this.  When I was a little kid, I figured out ways to either avoid situations where I felt uncomfortable or would just repeat to myself little insentives to get me through an uncomfortable situation.  I can't tell you how many panic attacks I had right in front of family and close friends that they didn't even know I was having.  I should have received an award for all the acting I did when inside I was scared to death.  It wasn't until I was in my late 40s that I would completely admit to myself that I had a problem and that was only because I absolutely crashed and couldn't cope or hide it anymore.  Because I had never been diagnosed, I thought I was going crazy.  I was so embarrassed and felt I had let my family, especially my husband down...I felt like a fraud.  To my amazement, my husband took time off work (one week) and stayed home with me while I started medication and really helped me get back on my feet.  I went through different meds until I found one that did the best job for me and stayed on it for approx. 5 years until very recently.  

I probably have given you far too much information, so here is my point.  There is light at the end of the tunnel.  You will find the right tools that will make your life easier.  Cognative behavioural therapy is extremely important!  Don't give up!  I had a panic attack in line at the grocery store one day and had to leave the line, go into the washroom, look myself in the mirror and talk myself into going back in line.  I did and the next day, I went right back to the same store and bought more things, lined up in the same line and I repeated this process every day for the rest of the week.  I was determined that I was going to be able to do this everyday task.  That is what cognative behavioural therapy is all about.  Be determined and don't let you anxiety get in the way of having the full life you deserve.  By the way, when you are in a group of people, take a look to your left and then to your right and chances are one of those people has a mental health issue.  You are definitely not alone.
Avatar universal
Boy can I relate.  I have panic disorder with agoraphobia.  I'm basically afraid to go anywhere or do anything.  The only time I can function O.K. in public is when I take xanex.  
Avatar universal
I know exactly how you feel....This past year has been very challenging for me, but I got through it.  Just leaving the house some days took a lot out of me, but I made myself do it.  I went through moving to a new house, taking care of my elderly father, his passing, my husband retiring, my sister's recent diagnosis of lung cancer, but besides that, my life has been uneventful.  LOL  If I can get through all of that/this, I can do anything and that is the attitude I'm going forward with...A positive attitude will help get you through.  Even if you don't feel positive inside, present your self like you are positive.  Sometimes, it will actually make you feel more confident.  
Avatar universal
Thanks for the encouragement.  You staying positive through all that you've gone through recently is incredible.  I'm going through nothing and have absolutely no reason to be anxious and depressed but I am.  I guess I'll try to fake it until I make it.
Avatar universal
That's the spirit!  Fake it until you make it, is a good thing!  As women, we also go through some really interesting hormonal issues when we are expecting our period, taking birth control pills, get pregnant, go throught perimenopause and menopause.  It's not bad enough that we struggle with GAD and PD but we have to deal with these on going fluxuations in our hormones.  Just keep a positive attitude and that will help.  What is the status on the pregnancy?  Recognize that your homonal fluxuation through pregnancy may cause all kinds of emotions, so don't read too much into them.    
Avatar universal
Hi, I had very similar to yours, blurry vision, vertigo, dizziness, balance problems but also some strange neuro sensations on skin (buzzing, numbness etc). Also panic attacks. I was diagnosed with vestibular labyrinthitis disorder, similar to Meunieres (mine was said maybe viral origin or maybe ciguatera, as said had some more neuro symptoms).  The centre I went to in UK tested me neurologically and sent me to vestibular rehabilitation, which was physiotherapy to re-educate balance system between inner ear, touch and eyes.

They told me at the centre that it very often goes together with panic attack type symptoms though they do not know why. They also said I was lucky to have been diagnosed early as many people search for help for a long time and their panic attacks and anxiety as well as their balance get worse and as they stop doing stuff and going places (i used to get it real bad in shops,grocery store isles, also driving, anywhere there is lots of visual stimuli). Stopping going places then makes it impossible for the balance system to recover etc, vicious circle.

They also said you can get headaches with it, some people also feel strange sensations in jaw, neck etc, I did.

In the meantime I know I had anxiety or panic attacks as well, but for me it helped tremendously to have a diagnosis.

M





Avatar universal
my symptoms morphed from full blown to just being a little bit dizzy, sweaty, hot and a tad of depresonalization. i use to be short of breath, heart pounding the whole 9. it gets better....i haven't had a full blown panic attack in YEARS. but dont' like the limited symptoms ones anymore than i did the others haha. you'll be fine. just take action. positive action!
Avatar universal
I would pursue the Meunieres together with cognitive therapy etc for panic disorder, the ears ringing constantly sounds so much like me. Mine was a year ago, am now much better..(balance and panics) so there's light in end of tunnel..
Avatar universal
Thanks everyone for the encouragement.  i am going to talk to a therapist hopefully soon.  You know with all the visual issues I am having it had to get worse.  About a few weeks ago I started having a huge increase in seeing floaters and lines.  Doctor said it was semi-normal, since this generally occurs much later in life but there was nothing they could do.....it wasnt retnal detachment.  Her encouraging words were "well i have seen worse" which she said as if she really didnt believe it herself.  I am only 27 and Im falling apart!  Anyways, since the problems started after quitting the efferox the first time ( over a 6mnth period) I am thinking of talking to someone about that.  I didnt know till about a few months ago that Effexor had such a high rate of severe withdrawl disorder cases.  And some people are still feeling the effects, like me, years later.  Which I have told at least a dozen doctors that it all started with going off that and going back on didnt help.  They told me it wasnt possible to still be feeling the effects.  Whose the crazy person then, me or them!?
Avatar universal
no one is crazy here, we all see floaters. ALL OF US! if i look and concentrate on them i can see them anytime i want to! and that is what you are doing! you are so hypersensitive to any body sensation or anything that it's driving you into a nervous wreck. this is called anxiety and panic disorder. i truly believe you are fine physically. i'm sure you have been to MANY dr.'s and had MANY TESTS and i bet they all came out fine....my suggestions from experience (and alot of it) would be to get a therapist, get a long acting benzo like klonopin for an as needed basis only and start doing CBT, cognitive behavioral therapy. also exercise and eating right can make a HUGE difference. do that for 2 months and we probably won't see you on this board anymore, you will be out living!
Avatar universal
Well I started a diet about two weeks ago and I am fine tuning it now, as in going all natural, no processed ( thanks to my obsssesion with Biggest Loser I am now on a mission to get back to my HS weight before my husband returns from deployment).  I have worked out a babysitting routine with my parents or my 3 yr old and 3 mth old so i can go workout.  (talk about anxiety...my son is 3 1/2 and he has severe signs of ADHD. my daughter and him will start screaming at the same time and the anxiety and dizziness set in.  but i have learned to take myself out of the equation for 5 mins and everyone returns to normal)   And of course I tried to get a therapist today and no one takes my insurance,but im still looking.  Its funny I feel really anxoius right now talking about all these changes, but I think it may be excitement. Thanks guys for listening.  Its like group therapy in my own home!
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