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    Old 12-26-2007, 11:25 PM   #1
    tmo
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    Dealing with Anxiety w/out Meds...Please share

    I have suffered from anxiety for the last 4 months. The panic attacks started with the onset of lyme disease. I'm only 21 and dont want to take anti depression meds.

    Four months ago, I couldnt leave the house without crying. I lost my appetite completley and would only tolerate bread. I would have to fall asleep with the TV on because in the silence my mind would race with thoughts uncontrolably.

    Now, I only suffer from minor anxiety at night about 4 times a week. However, I want to feel normal again. This is supposed to be the happiest time of my life and I just remember of when I lived without fear.

    I stopped drinking anything with caffeine and lowered my sugar intake because they both would only make the anxiety worse and sometimes cause me to tremble.

    If you know of any methods that help manage anxiety without taking medication please let me know.

    Thanks!

     
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    Old 12-27-2007, 11:19 AM   #2
    TopamaxKillsMe
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    Re: Dealing with Anxiety w/out Meds...Please share

    There are anxiety meds and there are anti-depressants. I was on both at one time but I realized I only really need the anti-anxiety meds. I'm on xanax now. Anti-depressants take a while to build up in your system, therefore they don't start working immediately; however anxiety meds start working shortly after you take them.

    If it's that bad you should ask your doctor for a mild anti-anxiety....or not. It's your body, Kava Kava is a natural root that is supposed to suppress anxiety. I prefer xanax.

     
    Old 12-27-2007, 11:21 AM   #3
    singer78
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    Re: Dealing with Anxiety w/out Meds...Please share

    Do you have the means to see a specialist?
    There must be an underlying factor, as to why you're having anxiety at night.

    If, in fact, at some point you "do" have to try med's...don't be frightened.
    I experienced the same thing, although my situation is completely different and I'm much older than you.
    Had it not been for the proper medication, I could not have functioned.

    You sound like a candidate for bio-feedback, or just 'talking' it out, since it's not ruling your life. Maybe yoga---working out---going for daily walks---anything to breathe.
    Deep breathing is essential for our wellbeing, also, as well as proper diet, exercise, positive mental outlook, etc.....

    Good luck to you. But, like I said, --in the event you may someday, have to take something...don't be afraid. It's not a "life sentence." You can back-off, or quit whenever you feel better. Sometimes we all need a crutch. Life can be difficult...but, it can also be an adventure. Try counting your blessings, too---keep a journal, perhaps.

    p.s. Like "Topamax" just said, xanax can be a life-saver. You can take them "as needed."

    S.

    Last edited by singer78; 12-27-2007 at 11:23 AM.

     
    Old 12-27-2007, 12:33 PM   #4
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    Re: Dealing with Anxiety w/out Meds...Please share

    I thought I might share a small tip that was useful to me...

    I used to suffer from anxiety at night as well. I would stay awake and mull over everything in my life, until I had worked myself up into such a panic that I couldn't sleep at all. One thing that really helped me was listening to classical music, or one of those sleep cds. Give your mind something else to focus on besides your thoughts.

    Also, make bedtime a relaxing time for yourself, something to look forward to. I usually get all ready for bed, and then curl up in a chair in my bedroom with a blanket and book. I turn off all the lights except for a single reading lamp. I usually read until I get too tired to focus, and then hop right into bed. These days I don't even need a sleep cd... I fall asleep too quickly.

    I hope this was helpful for you - best of luck.

     
    Old 12-28-2007, 11:13 AM   #5
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    Re: Dealing with Anxiety w/out Meds...Please share

    I personally had biofeedback done, which is an alternative to medication. It is supposed to help produce desired brainwaves for a number of conditions to include anxiety, depression, ADHD, etc. People even use it for headaches. It is supposed to also help increase serotonin in the brain, from what I understand. I definitely noticed it's effects, even though some people will tell you that it is very subtle. I don't mean that in a bad way - give it a try. Just be sure and communicate with your therapist how you feel after your treatment(s). It can be adjusted accordingly. I would end my last session with what are called beta waves, to sort of speed my brain back up again. I know it sounds kind of strange, but I believe that it helped me immensely with my anxiety. I'm using behavior therapy right now to help with my OCD. Definitely talk to a therapist. Cutting back on your caffeine and sugars sounds like a great idea. I, personally, talk to God and pray for a spirit of peace. : ) It may help you to also journal and get your racing thoughts out onto paper to help them to stop. My therapist had created a relaxation CD and it saved my life - it was great. I would also suggest eating foods that are known to help you relax like bananas and to exercise. There are also other foods you can find on-line that help to calm the nerves. I believe that blueberries and nuts were some of them as well.

    My prayers are with you.

    danni

     
    Old 12-28-2007, 07:11 PM   #6
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    Re: Dealing with Anxiety w/out Meds...Please share

    Yes, I have to say that I am very fearful to take anti- depressants or anxiety meds.

    Thank you all for you support. I'm definitely going to look into all your suggestions.

    To new readers, please share your suggestions. I'm open for anything!!

    Thank you!

     
    Old 12-28-2007, 07:28 PM   #7
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    Re: Dealing with Anxiety w/out Meds...Please share

    tmo -

    Also never underestimate the power of prayer and God's love for you and His healing power. My thoughts and prayers are with you. : )

    danni

     
    Old 12-28-2007, 08:22 PM   #8
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    Re: Dealing with Anxiety w/out Meds...Please share

    I had many of the symptoms you described. I felt like I was going insane. And I'm better now thanks to books by Claire Weeks. If you want to understand what is happening to you and how to relieve it I highly recommend her books.. Hope and Help For Your Nerves is one of them. Read what others have written about her. I owe my life to her. THey really should make her a saint.

    Last edited by msmod; 12-29-2007 at 08:33 AM. Reason: Removed banned word. If a word comes up like this *** in your post that word is banned on this website. Ms_Mod

     
    Old 12-30-2007, 02:30 PM   #9
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    Re: Dealing with Anxiety w/out Meds...Please share

    First of all, I am sorry to hear about your anxiety and panic problems, but please do not be afraid, you can get better--and perhaps without medications! Have you been to a psychologist? I think some sort of therapy would be good for you in helping you to understand your cognitions that may lead to panic attacks and your anxiety, so that you may replace those thoughts with more positive ones. I personally find relief receiving Cognitive Behavioral Therapy with a psychologist.

    Another thing I could recommend is to make sure your body...and therefore your mind is healthy. I find the more I exercise, the less anxiety I seem to feel (I have GAD). Also, eating healthy and taking vitamin supplements have been quite valuable. Ones that make a huge difference to me have been : fish oil, daily multivitamin, B-vitamin complex, magnesium, and 5-HTP. I firmly believe the health of your body really impacts your mind, and vice versa.

    Relaxation / Stress reduction techniques, such as deep breathing (I often realize I am not taking full breaths when I should), taking hot baths (with lavender essential oil and epsom salts), listening to relaxing music (classic, instrumental, etc), mediation, pilates, and yoga, also help tremendously.

    I've noticed a huge improvement using all of the previous mentioned methods, but I also take an anti-anxiety medication every night because while I don't always have trouble sleeping, I require a stable sleeping schedule to do my best work during the day and some nights (without Klonopin) my mind could run for hours and hours, building anxiety so that my exhausted body wouldn't be able to fall asleep. I have not noticed ANY side effects of this drug and I've been taking 1 mg nightly for about 8 months, so if your anxiety is still unmanageable in some way for you (as sleeping/nights are for me), then I would give an anti-anxiety medication, such as Klonopin, Xanax, Ativan, etc (not an antidepressant) a shot.

    I hope my experience helps you! Take care.

     
    Old 12-31-2007, 01:15 PM   #10
    Jennita
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    Re: Dealing with Anxiety w/out Meds...Please share

    Exercise and nutrition! Exercise is a must!!! Your body is stronger, your cardiovascular is stronger, so even if you do have an anxiety episode, your body can better handle it. I can't stand not to exercise. I've had a cold for a week and I don't know what's worse, the cold or the lack of exercise because of it.

    Well, it's getting better now so I'm going to workout today, thank God!!! I even have my own personal house friendly dumbells for when I don't go to the gym, and use cardio dvds. I can't understand anyone who is able to exercise not doing it, it really makes a huge difference in how you feel both physically and mentally.

     
    Old 01-05-2008, 12:02 AM   #11
    DbrhAHnry1967
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    Re: Dealing with Anxiety w/out Meds...Please share

    I myself have panic disorder may I suggest to you since I myself deal with it without taking any medications for it. First of all, you need to know your own body cause like mine Stress is a BIG trigger for my anxiety and not getting enough rest. Once I learned my body like this I have had far less panic attacks they now only happen once in a blue moon and last anywhere from 30mins to an hour. When I do get an attack like this I think of a happy place like an ocean something calm and relaxing while taking deep breaths kinda like meditation block everything out by closing my eyes Breathe in .........then Breathe out....sometimes you can't always lay down. On a few occassions it has happened to me while at work what I do if that happens is go to the bathroom sit on the stool and get myself calm strange yes but hey it helps. Because although I feel ok in my mind my body has a mind of its own it is telling me differently. Also, another thing that kinda helps have someone you know or is around at the time massage your back I had my son do this for me when I had a really severe case of it this was my worst one. These are just some tips for you to try cause I don't like taking meds and really I don't get them as often like when they first started with me....Good luck wish you the best...

     
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