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How long can anxiety last??

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Old 08-09-2005, 07:49 PM   #1
Senior Member
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 267
LonelyTraveler HB User
Unhappy How long can anxiety last??


I have been experiencing almost constant anxiety for 3-4 months now because a bat flew over my head, caught a bug in it's wings and then flew off like a fighter jet into the feild. I must admit that it creeped me out at the time but after I returned home from my walk, I just brushed it off. Then, the "what if's" started like "what if it was rabid, licked itself and as it flew over me a peice of fur came off and I inhaled it" or "what if it slobbered or urinated on me as it flew over?". The next thing I know, I am in the ER freaking out and ever since then, any time I get a symptom, I immediately think it's rabies and I'm going to die. Also, I'm always checking myself for "bites". This has made me lose interest in doing anything anymore because if I'm going to die anyway, what's the point?.

I remember about 12 years ago thinking I had AIDS. I had nightmares about AIDS, obsessed about it day and night, had panic attacks, begged all my freinds to get tested, read about all the symptoms and felt like I had ALL of them and ended up having a severe nervous breakdown. I turned into a helpless, quivering mass of jelly and could hardly even feed myself it got so bad. This went on for months. Now it's rabies. Does it ever end?.

I guess the most important question I have is this: is it possible to develop a phobia and have intense anxiety that lasts for months or even years?. I have always thought that anxiety was something that you just had for a few hours or maybe a day or two but can you have more or less constant worry/fear/anxiety lastings for months or longer over a disease?. I've now taken up drinking, smoking, popping benzos during the day and an Atarax at night just to help me sleep. It's been a roller-coaster and I want off so bad!!.

Anyway, thank's for listening.

- Lonely Traveler

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Old 08-09-2005, 09:17 PM   #2
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 280
NathanF41 HB User
Re: How long can anxiety last??

I've posted my story all over this site. Long story short, always had some general anxieties...nothing crippling or too bothersome at all. Then after stopping Depakote for migraines after about 5 years, had an anxiety explosion that's so far lasted 6 months. I have my theories that I posted elsewhere on this site. I'm hoping to turn it around soon with time and help.

But basically what I'm saying is, anxiety can last a long time. Judging by people on this board, some have grown up with it and always had it. But it's how you deal with it that's going to make the ultimate difference I think. If you posted your story on this board, I believe you're looking for help. So I'm going to give you my advice. Quit smoking and drinking ASAP!!!!! You may not know it, but you are making it much worse for yourself, even if it giving you some temporary relief. If you want to conquer your anxiety, there are steps you can take, just as I am. Therapy is a good place to start. Not getting addicted to meds by just "popping benzos" is another recommendation. I'd say, if you're not already doing the following at least start doing this: See a therapist and/or a psychiatrist. If you need meds, they will prescribe what's best for you and monitor you so you're not just aimlessly popping pills (which is also going to make it MUCH MUCH MUCH MUCH worse for you). Go from there with the outside help of the doctors.

It sounds like you want to get over your anxiety, and we're all here for support. And we're all going to tell you that it sounds like the road you're choosing so far is only going to strengthen your anxiety. So please start your turnaround now. I'd say get a Dr. ASAP and they can help you through the process of quitting smoking/drinking/benzos for alternative help.

Good luck!

Old 08-09-2005, 10:53 PM   #3
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 396
Felicia65 HB User
Re: How long can anxiety last??

take the advice given it is right on the money. anxiety can last along time it will lessen and can go away. it may persent its self to you at times, But you can learn what it is so it will not consume your life any more. You need a doctor who deals with this. he/she can get you on the right kind of meds. and you will not feel like this , but it does take time to find the right meds at the right dose. benzos are addictive and can be hell to come off of. be careful how you abuse them, you should not have to pop them all day if you are somthing is wrong. you need to talk with a doctor. Stop drinking it only makes anxiety worse. it is an depressent. and you already are depressed plus mixing meds and beer is not a good thing to do. And yes I have felt the same way thought I had AIDS to one time! got tested waited 6 monthes got tested I remember those days I thought it would never end I lived in torment pure hell! I hate to think of another person going though what I did. BUT I can tell you this there is help out there! dont you ever think that there is not. IT IS THERE! YOU can over come this! And no you dont have rabies if you did you would not be here typing you have to understand that we tend to blow everything up five hunded times more that is why we have anxity we seem to live inside ourself and in order to get over this sometimes we have to have the right meds. BUT HELP from a doctor is what you need hang in there . There is sunshine out there. Felicia

Old 08-10-2005, 06:56 AM   #4
Senior Veteran
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 2,104
tnmomofive HB User
Re: How long can anxiety last??

Nathan and Felica are so right! Lonely once you learn how to deal with the anxiety you will have ALOT of good days ! Maybe even overcome the anxiety all together some people really do.I actualy do have months and years almost anxiety free.It seems to hit me again when I am stressed or have been stressed out,or when I am not keeping busy.I will not say it never hits me out of nowhere and when I feel fine because it does.The thing is though you need to do as Nathan and Felica have said get with your doctor about.I can tell you to stop smoking ,but I smoke myself although you should try to stop.
The drinking really needs to be worked on you obviously have a drinking problem.As was said that is most certainly making it all WORSE!If you want relief from the anxiety you should see your doctor about it and they can help you learn coping skills and if you choose give you meds to help.Felica is right you do not have rabies you would of been gone hours after getting that and you would of SURELY felt way way worse then you ever have.You are a good guy and funny just need to be led in the right direction.I need that sometimes too.

I hope you dont feel anyone is attacking you ...just concerned

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