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Having mixed depression and anxiety, panic attacks as well, my life is falling apart

K

Kratos_and_boi

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Sep 13, 2020
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Croatia
So I'm having really awful problems with depression and anxiety during the last 2 or 3 years and i have been diagnosed with mixed depression and anxiety but the treatments with medication aren't really making me fell better.
So let's start with how I first contacted my doctor, I may or may not write the whole story right now because I'm not feeling really well at this moment and even steuggling to write this:
I first contacted my doctor somewhere around 2 or 3 years ago because i had trouble sleeping and i had heart palpitations which scared me. I don't know exactly when but my doctor prescribed me benzodizepines: at first diazepam then alprazolam after a while, I can't really remember the exact orders. Somewhere during this time my doctor sent me to make an ekg which of course was fine, after a while i had an portable ekg for 24 hours and this turned out fine besides my heart rate climbing to more then 150bpm while taking 3 levels worth of stairs to the cardiologist. After a while i did a monitored stress test on a treadmill which they told me was fine and they ruled out the heart. I think this was during the first or second year of studying mechanical engineering.

After everything my doctor sent me naturally to an psychiatrist who diagnosed me with mixed depression and anxiety and prescribed me with escitalopram if i recall correctly. I continued taking like 5mg of diazepam 2 times a day which i use to this day by need some day nothing, some day 15mg. I had the alprazolam taken away. As the escitalopram was an ssri i got in a really good mood but i had some (word which I can't remeber for unwanted symptoms) and I told my doctor i had these so she told me to take half the dosis. I was feeling very happy during like 3 weeks while taking escitalopram but feeling sleepy all day then i had an appointment at the psychologist and when i told her the unwanted symptoms she changed my medication to brintellix(trintellix-vortioxetinum) i was taking 2mg during a month or so but with no success so when i had my next appointment she upped my dose to 5mg which made me feel worse. I know it was like december and during december and january i stopped taking all medication because it wasn't helping. After like 3 weeks of not taking any medication I had my first really bad panic attack, i litteraly thought i was dying and had no diezapam left so i took my mothers oxazepam which after some while calmed me down. I reported this to my doctor and started taking diazepam again. I changed my psychiatrist because i could not get an appointment at the old one and I also got to an psychologist. I think before that I visited an neurologist who sent me to make an eeg, brain mri, some blood screens because I noticed my brain performance started decreasing and also sent me to make that psychologist appointment. Well at the physical side everything came back normal. some time after that i got to the new psychologist and changed my medication to pregabalin and vortioxetinum remained, diazepam also. Vortioxetinum did nothing good so after a while she changed it to trittico which is trozodonchloride i felt wery very bad while using this medication and iit worsened my sleep so she canceled it. For a while i have been using only pregabaling and diazepam but my condition was not perfect so she gave me vortioxetinum but i told her i would like to try again with escitalopram but she did not want to give me that. I then started taking vortioxetinum for a few weeks but i stopped because it was making me sick. The corona situation made things only worse. I take now only pregabalin before sleep and diazepam when feeling some discomfort or having panic attack. The panic attacks are getting worse and worse and the occurences are almost daily, the medicine i have sometimes doesn't even help to stop the panic attack.

I see the story is getting really long so i might not finiish it right now.
 
bpd2020

bpd2020

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I am so sorry to hear what a difficult time you are having. It is difficult when we struggle to find an antidepressant that works. There are different ones that you have not tried so maybe they are worth trying.

Have you ever had any therapy for anxiety? It can really help to deal with the symptoms and learn coping methods.
 
K

Kratos_and_boi

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Croatia
Thank you very much for reading my story, although it is just a fraction of it. It helps when people want to help you, especially people that don't know you. Most people i know i can't reach out for help, mostly because mental illnesses are a taboo theme where I live.
I have a lot of stuff to mention still, i have had social anxiety from when i was a child but i realised what that actually is when i was a teenager. Btw im 24 at the moment and i have already wasted 2 years of my life and have achieved almost nothing. I must admit that I consume alcohol often which makes me more social, but I doubt alcohol caused all of this, there are many reasons why i probably got ill. I am also really trying to quit alcohol alltogether but i also noticed that my body is in withdrawal. I sometimes drink once in two weeks but most often every weekend. My lets call them friends drink alcohol sometimes several times per week and they get very drunk but they have no issues with it, me?, If i drink like 6 or more beers on an evening I can't function for 2 days normally.
Also I really want a girlfriend but I'm struggling with that too, I think a partner would make me fell better,have better will to do something on my life and so on.
This covid situation has made me financially bankrupt and that makes me even more depressed. It was going very well before that: I had a job and worked almost every day and i felt relatively good at that moment then covid came and the factory stopped working for several months and i was jobless, after they started working again they called me to come back to work for them but during the time before my situation got worse and i could barely work some days i had no energy and often i would feel very sick in the morning so i skipped work that day, I haven't even worked for a month and i took some time off but they replaced me meanwhile so i was jobless again since this day. I was trying to find a job but am struggling. I have some exams this month so I think it is better to wait it out and then find a job that fits me. But as I said earlier my brain can't process information like it could like 2 years ago so it is really hard for me too pass them. I have thermodynamics and fluid mechanichs too pass but i know that in this state I'm unable to learn for this exams. I can't even concentrate for half an hour while studying and my memory is really bad. Most of the time i dont have the will to even start studying so i often end up doing something in my garage or wathing movies or playing video games. Actually i really love to play video games and this makes me happy and calm, one period i was so anxious I haven't even had any satisfaction from playing games but at least now it is ok.

My enviroment where I live is very toxic, i mean people bother me all the time an such stuff, I think a good idea would be to move from here. One thing i planned is to move to another country to my cousin and my aunt, i visit them often and i feel better there. The only problem is I have university in my country and this is the only thing that stops me from moving there.
Maybe i should pause study for a while and continue when I get better and make some money so I'll worry less what do you guys think?
Also about the tharapy, what kind of therapy did you mean?
One more thing, i am suspecting that taking diazepam for such prolonged time made me worse and caused all of my sympthoms, I have read that diazepam is really bad for you and i think i am addicted to it very strongly
 
bpd2020

bpd2020

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Cognitive behaviour therapy is often used for anxiety. That may be something that could benefit you.

In the Uk doctors only give diazepam for a short period of time as it is addictive. I am really sorry you were given it for so long.

It is helpful to focus on our mental health if we find study or work too much.

I am sorry you are going through such a lot. It is a lot to cope with.
 
K

Kratos_and_boi

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Messages
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Croatia
I don't really know if there is something like this in Croatia and if our medical insurace would cover this because as i said I'm really out of money and could not afford such therapy.

Well I think our doctors don't give an F about diazepam harm, they prescribe it to everyone and is used as an recreational drug, I think i haven't taken more than 20mg in a day and I think I have deceliped an resitance to it because I never get sleepy from it, I can drive after taking 10mg with no problems and I am alert all the time. Do you maybe know if the damage done from such prolonged taking of diazepam would be irreversible or not. I am almost certain that the decreased cognitive abilities come from diazepam.

So moving out from here would be a very good idea, my aunt lives in a village on a hill on a farm and you can have your perfect peace there, no stress whatsoever, the next neighbor is 500 meters away.

Thaky you for your compassion.
 
bpd2020

bpd2020

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I am sorry. It is difficult when therapy is not an option. I too have decreased cognitive ability. It is difficult to know if it is caused by medication or being unwell. I think it is terrible the doctors hand out diazepam so freely there.

Your aunts farm sounds like a lovely, peaceful place. You are welcome. :)
 
Talina

Talina

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Sweden
I will just go into what I’ve learned about benzodiazepines. You will build up a tolerance and it should only be used short term as medication. I hope you don’t combine them with alcohol because alcohol and benzodiapzepines work on the same receptors. But alcohol will make benzodiazepines get a boost (don’t know the correct terms in english to explain it easier) which can be really dangerous.

In sweden benzodiazepines like diazepem should only be used max 4 weeks as treatments. While longer treatments you should think of the risk and the effects it will bring (8-12 weeks). They will try to find other way that will work better.

It will take a long time to flush it out from system because it have a long half-time period to break down in the body. When you quit you will need to slowly take it out, so you don’t get too bad withdrawal symptoms because you can get pretty bad withdrawal symptoms.

It was bad of the doctors to prescribe a medication and not warn about the side-effects and the precaution. I hope you will get better help.

I’m just a pharmacy student, so it was just the overall information I know. I could go deeper on how it works and why.

Taking a break from studies might help, myself is planing to take a break when I get my bachelor exam. Just because I’m always balancing between meltdowns and passing. I need to focus on myself and my own health first, so I can get better.
 
K

Kratos_and_boi

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Croatia
Yeah well you had high hopes, I try not to take diazepam when i know i will be drinking but it sometimes happens that i take it hours before drinking and i think it gets me drunk very fast and my behaviour is unpredictable, I tend to be very unpleasant towards people, especially women.

You can freely bombard me with technical stuff, I would apreciate that. I am actually very intelligent and into science and technology but my social intelligence is very bad, i have social anxiety and i drink because of that so I'm not bored in company
 
Talina

Talina

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Yeah well you had high hopes, I try not to take diazepam when i know i will be drinking but it sometimes happens that i take it hours before drinking and i think it gets me drunk very fast and my behaviour is unpredictable, I tend to be very unpleasant towards people, especially women.

You can freely bombard me with technical stuff, I would apreciate that. I am actually very intelligent and into science and technology but my social intelligence is very bad, i have social anxiety and i drink because of that so I'm not bored in company
I also have social anxiety but mine have gotten better. But I still have trouble walking outdoors alone. Myself have picked up the step to ask for help from a therapist after struggling alone. I’ll bomber at a later time today about diazepam and the technical terms. I need to study for an exam I will have on friday and I’ve gotten a messed up sleeping pattern right now.

It understandable that you get drunk faster when you combined, at least diazepam have an antidote which is good. Myself never drink so much I get drunk, being a women you need to be on your guard. At least I can beat my friends on who can hold the liquor best, even though I drink the least among us. But I mostly avoid alcohol, I don’t want to get an addiction like my dad. I also have quite many bad memories asscoiated with alcohol.

I totally understand the company part, I can’t really relax but I would need to drink myself really drunk to let loose which aren’t smart. At parties I always end up in the group that are social awkward in a corner and have the most weird conversations. Mostly about games and different things. I remember I once ended up talking about yu-gi-oh cards, I only watch that serie as a small kid, yet as an adult I ended up talking about the card game for hours when I had no idea how to even play it or any interest. I don’t have the greatest social skills, I also want to be able to do the things my friends do but I just can’t relax.

My social aniexty even caused trouble when I was taking my driver license, it took 6 years of practice. I still hate driving where it’s a lot of people, because my mind start to worry and distract me.
 
K

Kratos_and_boi

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Take care of your exam, i have one too tommorow but unfortunately i couldn't make myself to study for it so i will most likely fail and all because of this anxiety.

Well the problem with me when drinking is that i simply can't stop untill the party is over or when I'm so drunk i just fall asleep spontaneous. The hangovers are really really bad, it takes me 2 days to recover while others can function the next day normally. When i drink i simply can't sleep anymore when I'm getting sober.

While taking my drivers license yi vas very very nervous and anxious but i managed it somehow by talking with my instructor and the inspector and throwing in a few jokes, I haven't done any major errors so fortunately i passed. Now I'm making my A license for motorcycles, I hope I'll pass from the first try
 
Talina

Talina

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Myself had a meltdown last summer, I failed one of my exam back then. But I was lucky it was the last exam before summer break and it was just an anatomy exam. So it was easy to do the re-exam this year. I would totally mess it up if I had failed a chemistry exam instead. I only have one more chemistry to survive through and it will start next week.

I often get the feeling when I’m slipping and my focus can’t stay. Just trying to follow the lecture and everything in front of me gets blurred and I get a tension headache. That’s just an annoying reminder my brain don’t want to focus. My friend in the same program notice when I get into those episodes because I get slow and can’t focus, I’m nearly impossible to hold a conversation with me because my mind just zone out. When I get into one of those episodes I refuse to drive the car, because my reaction speed get really bad and I’m just a danger behind the wheel.

It must be really hard not being able to control how much you drinks. Myself start to feel a border when it’s time to stop. If I push over it I will get drunk. So I can easily stop drinking. Having hangover so long must be annoying it can be because of the diazepam. Because it will give you more response than the rest of the people that isn’t on it. So it will take time to rebalance the neurotransmitter in your body after you have drank. Because alcohol will make diazepam amplified.

Why it can become dangerous when combination is that it can knock you out and cause respiratory arrest. You will get an enchanced effect of the alcohol and diazepam. So it will take a longer time for the substance to get out from your system compared if you only drank alcohol or just took diazepam. So compared with your friends you get a lot more drunk than them and get a worse hangover. This is because your body will first focus on clearing the alcohol while diazepam will be cleared out after. Your liver can only metabolism a certain amount of substance and will reach an optimal speed. Because there a limit on how many metabolism enzymes the liver have. Both diazepam and alcohol get eliminated by the liver. So you will stay hangover longer and feel bad.

I’ve read once before that if you mix diazepam and alcohol you can get a decreased cognitive abilities.

Myself also want to get a license for the motorcycle, I’ve always wanted to do a motorcycle trip when you drive through europe. But it will have to wait for next year or the year after. You will certainly manage to pass and get your license.
 
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Kratos_and_boi

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I'm just putting here some quotes relevant to my situation from another topic
Welcome!

First things first, do you know what you are anxious about?
Well I don't really know what to tell you. The financial issues, the family and friends, worries about my university, unability to find a girlfriend, the last one makes me really desperate and pathethic, the last time i got lucky was like a year ago and this was a one night stand and we were both drunk as hell.
My family is a mess, father drinks and brings no income whatsoever, mother is retired and very sick, has a very small income. I feel like im 90 years old, I barely do something for 2 hours and i must rest a bit, i cant sleep properly, my 86year old grandpa is more healthy than i am. I have panic attacks often, at first it was like one time in a few months but now it is almost every day, I litterally fell like I'm having an heart attack and i feel like Im dying, my extremities an sometimes face and chest get numb, it feels like electricity, during the panic attack i can't even breathe properly, i had hiperventilation and racing heartbeat but I managed to control it whrn i found out what this episode actually is. Sometimes it gets triggered when I eat a lot, sometimes I can't even walk but have to drag myself on the floor, my hands sometimes ger cramped, lying besides someone and holding their hand seems to calm me down a bit.
I simply can't function through the day normally, someone would think I'm lazy but they wouldn't understand that this is a illness that causes everything. I can't even drink coffee because it makes me sick, nicotine also causes simmilar problems and could trigger panic attacks.
I have opened a new topic in the anxiety section so check that out.
 
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Kratos_and_boi

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Croatia
I have visted my psychiatrist a few days and I told her I want to ditch the diazepam but it looks like I'm having severe diazepam withdrawal syndrome. It is really bad, I feel like I'm about to die, sometime it passes, sometimes it last for an hour or so.
I also stayed on pregabalin and she gave me sertraline(zoloft) for depression but I think I'm going to ditch this medication because it makes me unfunctional throughout the whole day and I got a new job and I want to perform good.
 
Talina

Talina

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It’s good that you want to ditch diazepam, withdrawal symptoms is the downside of drugs that you get addicted too. Specially when you have been using them for a long time. I hope your psychiatrist know how to slowly get it out from the system.

I hope you manage to handle the withdrawal and manage to do good at your new job :hug:
 
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Kratos_and_boi

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Looks like my psychiatrist doesnt care at all, she said I can just stop taking them like this but i doubt I will manage. Are there any information online on how to gradually quit them?
 
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