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New User. Generalized Anxiety Disorder which makes me worry CONSTANTLY.

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PamW69

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Jun 29, 2021
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Miamisburg, OH
Hi,

I am trying to find more people who are going through something similar to me. I constantly worry about stuff...normal everyday things that I blow out of proportion to where the simplest things seem like the end of the world. Sleep is almost non existent. I can get to sleep but wake up about 6 times through the night. Sometimes, I give up and am up at 4 in the morning and just stay up. Doc just started me on Paxil and Lunesta yesterday so hoping it helps.
 
calypso

calypso

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Hiya and Welcome to the forum. That must be exhausting and that in turn makes the anxiety worse. I hope the meds help you. Is this a new thing? Has anything started this off and caused this?
 
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PamW69

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Hiya and Welcome to the forum. That must be exhausting and that in turn makes the anxiety worse. I hope the meds help you. Is this a new thing? Has anything started this off and caused this?
I was diagnosed with GAD many years ago but never gave any of the meds a chance. Now that I am turning 52 this year, I am really just trying to start taking care of myself better. Things seem to be breaking down left and right...lol
 
calypso

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Meds aren't the only answer but they have their place. Have you thought about any therapy?
 
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PamW69

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Meds aren't the only answer but they have their place. Have you thought about any therapy?
Therapy is another thing I have been resisting. I seriously hate getting out of the house and years back I went to my share of psychiatrists that always diagnoses me with something else and threw anti depressants and benzos at me with no real help. I honestly do better talking things out with my husband. We understand the problem...literally just an overactive brain that makes me worry a lot. I know some people have things much worse and my problem seems fairly straight forward. It is just all the other stuff that is affected because of it. When I am talking I am always talking fast. I literally have to concentrate to not talk like a lunatic...lol
 
calypso

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You aren't talking like a lunatic! I am pleased that you have your husband to talk to. Its so distressing being like this isn't it? Don't worry about others having things worse, you have a problem and are as worthy of help as anyone else. How do you get through your day? I am diagnosed with bipolar but don't get anxiety so don't fully understand how it impacts a person's life. I have read on here though that for some people its crippling.
 
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PamW69

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I have been dealing with the constant worrying about stupid crap for years so I am kind of used to it. I finally gave in to the anti depressants because I read that Paxil is used for the anxiety disorder and appears to be affective with many. I don't think I have actual "panic attacks". My mind just never shuts off and obsesses over everyday things and things that are tiny little issues for most people turn into "end of the world" and failures to me. It's very strange and I know it is irrational but it doesn't stop me from feeling it.
 
calypso

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There is a book, but I don't know if its available on Amazon, called "Emotional Hijacking" by Marlene Schneider Potter which is excellent in helping with this. It is written very simply in big letters as she knows that people with anxiety often can't read a wall of text. Just a thought.
 
Jam1990

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Hi there, I also deal with generalized anxiety. I used to worry about everything and it would consume my energy and ruin my day. I did a lot of therapy and it actually really helped. The therapy that helped me the most was acceptance therapy. It taught me that, like you said, I have an overactive brain and that’s just who I am. You can’t really change that, but you can accept it. I learned that the best way to deal with anxious thoughts isn’t to try and get rid of them, but instead recognize them and let them pass. Eventually if you do this, they will start to have less power over you. It didn’t seem like it was working for me for a while, but then it just did. I’m still a worrier, but I mostly have good days now instead of bad ones.

Medication is also very helpful. I take quetiapine which is an antipsychotic ( because I also have psychotic features) but it helps with anxiety too.

Exercise is also very helpful and in my opinion essential to the healing process. Along with a good diet.

Hope this helps!
 
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PamW69

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Miamisburg, OH
Hi there, I also deal with generalized anxiety. I used to worry about everything and it would consume my energy and ruin my day. I did a lot of therapy and it actually really helped. The therapy that helped me the most was acceptance therapy. It taught me that, like you said, I have an overactive brain and that’s just who I am. You can’t really change that, but you can accept it. I learned that the best way to deal with anxious thoughts isn’t to try and get rid of them, but instead recognize them and let them pass. Eventually if you do this, they will start to have less power over you. It didn’t seem like it was working for me for a while, but then it just did. I’m still a worrier, but I mostly have good days now instead of bad ones.

Medication is also very helpful. I take quetiapine which is an antipsychotic ( because I also have psychotic features) but it helps with anxiety too.

Exercise is also very helpful and in my opinion essential to the healing process. Along with a good diet.

Hope this helps!
Helps a LOT. I asked the doc about putting me on Seroquel along with the Paxil but she said since she knows I am worried about weight gain that she wants me to start with the Paxil and we can add the Seroquel later if I want. My weight is the only thing I had control of before. I went from 205lbs to 125 and am back back to 150 right now. I also lost my hair that is still not growing back the right way because I started on Dulcolax years ago because I was on Keto diet which caused constipation. It got out of hand and now I am dealing with that crap too. I know I sound crazy but the weight loss before was the ONE thing that made me feel good about myself so doc is trying to be careful by getting me off slowly while still trying to treat this overactive mind. My self esteem has been in the toilet. My parents both died in their mid 60's and my brother died last August by basically drinking himself to death. I come from a family of alcoholics. I chose a way of coping which took up my 20's and 30's. I got through that but am left with what I am going through now. I am used to it but tired of it...that is why I am working with doc. All of this is very overwhelming and I am all but a shut in now not wanting to leave my house much. I have a wonderful husband but I know my craziness has taken its toll on him.
 
Contramike

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Helps a LOT. I asked the doc about putting me on Seroquel along with the Paxil but she said since she knows I am worried about weight gain that she wants me to start with the Paxil and we can add the Seroquel later if I want. My weight is the only thing I had control of before. I went from 205lbs to 125 and am back back to 150 right now. I also lost my hair that is still not growing back the right way because I started on Dulcolax years ago because I was on Keto diet which caused constipation. It got out of hand and now I am dealing with that crap too. I know I sound crazy but the weight loss before was the ONE thing that made me feel good about myself so doc is trying to be careful by getting me off slowly while still trying to treat this overactive mind. My self esteem has been in the toilet. My parents both died in their mid 60's and my brother died last August by basically drinking himself to death. I come from a family of alcoholics. I chose a way of coping which took up my 20's and 30's. I got through that but am left with what I am going through now. I am used to it but tired of it...that is why I am working with doc. All of this is very overwhelming and I am all but a shut in now not wanting to leave my house much. I have a wonderful husband but I know my craziness has taken its toll on him.
Hi, Pam and welcome.
I was diagnosed with GAD about 27 years ago. I'm a big proponent of therapy before medication (when possible). When you see a psychiatrist (most of the time), you see them for 15-20 minutes once or twice a month and they make a diagnosis of that small sample size. Most therapists will see you once a week for an hour and know you much better, and, in many cases, can recommend a more accurate diagnosis to your psychiatrist that's based on a much broader sample of your life. They also have a large array of ideas that can relieve many of your symptoms of anxiety without, or in combination, with medication.

That being said:
I have been on Seroquel for about 20 years, and it has it's pros and cons. It will make you calm and seemingly magically so. It is also very addictive. It's extremely difficult to come off of once you've been on it for a while. It has the "immediate" effects, and the "about 10 days later" effects. When I started taking it I felt a calming euphoria like I had never thought possible. Then, after about two weeks I felt like I had been nailed to the floor and had lost all energy; but I was still calm. I took the trade-off and made it work. The same pattern happens when lowering the dose or cutting it completely. You'll feel alive again and everything will seem great...until about 10 days later. Then you hit "The wall." The anxiety flares up again and it seems to be greater than it originally was before taking the drug initially. *This is my experience and that of many others, but it of course, will effect everyone differently.*

Keep us posted!
 
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PamW69

Member
Joined
Jun 29, 2021
Messages
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Location
Miamisburg, OH
Hi, Pam and welcome.
I was diagnosed with GAD about 27 years ago. I'm a big proponent of therapy before medication (when possible). When you see a psychiatrist (most of the time), you see them for 15-20 minutes once or twice a month and they make a diagnosis of that small sample size. Most therapists will see you once a week for an hour and know you much better, and, in many cases, can recommend a more accurate diagnosis to your psychiatrist that's based on a much broader sample of your life. They also have a large array of ideas that can relieve many of your symptoms of anxiety without, or in combination, with medication.

That being said:
I have been on Seroquel for about 20 years, and it has it's pros and cons. It will make you calm and seemingly magically so. It is also very addictive. It's extremely difficult to come off of once you've been on it for a while. It has the "immediate" effects, and the "about 10 days later" effects. When I started taking it I felt a calming euphoria like I had never thought possible. Then, after about two weeks I felt like I had been nailed to the floor and had lost all energy; but I was still calm. I took the trade-off and made it work. The same pattern happens when lowering the dose or cutting it completely. You'll feel alive again and everything will seem great...until about 10 days later. Then you hit "The wall." The anxiety flares up again and it seems to be greater than it originally was before taking the drug initially. *This is my experience and that of many others, but it of course, will effect everyone differently.*

Keep us posted!
Thank you so much for your reply. I have never used a forum like this but I think knowing that there are others out there with my "issues", or at least some of my issues, helps a lot. That being said, I screwed up bad yesterday. For some stupid reason, I thought having a few shots of Makers Mark would get me out of my head early afternoon yesterday. I had zero food in my stomach so I didn't get sick like I usually do EVERY time I have a few shots. I guess I was thinking since I had no food to throw up that I would be ok and I was. About 5 hours later when I figured it was all out of my system, I finally ate something and took my Paxil. Shortly after nausea and vomiting started which mans another night with no sleep. I will be 52 in August and cannot believe how DUMB I can be sometimes. I just wanted out of my head for a couple hours and figured enough time had passed for the alcohol to clear my system but obviously something went wrong. Coffee and water this morning are staying down and the nausea is all but gone so will try and get back on track today. I was addicted to opiate pain killers for most of my 20's and 30's to avoid all the problems I am now having to deal with. My self esteem is in the toilet with the loss of my hair and some other issues that make stay away from mirrors. I am a HOT MESS. I am always better during the day but I dread nighttime because of the lack of sleep. I will try and give the Paxil a real chance and try to avoid adding the Lexapro later down the road. I don't need anything that could make me feel "euphoric" especially if I lose it after a week or 2. I just want my life back and REALLY want the Paxil to help so maybe I can at least start sleeping better. I always feel sooooooo much better if I get a good night's sleep but can't remember the last one I had.

I have written a damn book here so will stop for now but I welcome any and all advice and support.

Pam
 
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PamW69

Member
Joined
Jun 29, 2021
Messages
9
Location
Miamisburg, OH
Hi there, I also deal with generalized anxiety. I used to worry about everything and it would consume my energy and ruin my day. I did a lot of therapy and it actually really helped. The therapy that helped me the most was acceptance therapy. It taught me that, like you said, I have an overactive brain and that’s just who I am. You can’t really change that, but you can accept it. I learned that the best way to deal with anxious thoughts isn’t to try and get rid of them, but instead recognize them and let them pass. Eventually if you do this, they will start to have less power over you. It didn’t seem like it was working for me for a while, but then it just did. I’m still a worrier, but I mostly have good days now instead of bad ones.

Medication is also very helpful. I take quetiapine which is an antipsychotic ( because I also have psychotic features) but it helps with anxiety too.

Exercise is also very helpful and in my opinion essential to the healing process. Along with a good diet.

Hope this helps!
I got a treadmill off of Amazon and hubby finally set it up in basement rec room for me. I am embarrassed to say I got on it once so far and got discouraged because I only did 10 minutes at 2mph. I will stick with the paxil and see if it gives me any relief in a few weeks. I am trying to take it after I eat dinner in hopes I will get the drowsiness side effect and it will help my sleep. Therapy is an option but hubby works and I haven't driven in a while and don't have a car of my own right now since I have been homebound for years...couldn't justify getting a car when it wouldn't be used much. I don't want to make hubby take too much time off work to get me to weekly appointments. Maybe Telehealth would be an option for that.
 
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PamW69

Member
Joined
Jun 29, 2021
Messages
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Location
Miamisburg, OH
You aren't talking like a lunatic! I am pleased that you have your husband to talk to. Its so distressing being like this isn't it? Don't worry about others having things worse, you have a problem and are as worthy of help as anyone else. How do you get through your day? I am diagnosed with bipolar but don't get anxiety so don't fully understand how it impacts a person's life. I have read on here though that for some people its crippling.
With GAD you are literally constantly worried about stuff...even the small little things like chores needing done seem like an impossible task. The worst is at night when you are trying to go to sleep. Think of it like not being able to shut off your brain. During waking hours it is more manageable because you are more awake and doing stuff to keep your brain occupied. Nighttime is when you need to shut that down and when you can't it makes for another night with little to no sleep.
 
Contramike

Contramike

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Don't even think you're posting too much! The more we know about you the better we can help you, and we do want to help you! If you've written an autobiography I'd be more that happy to read it! Keep the information coming! The more the better!

I can't imagine what you went through with being addicted to opiates. I imagine it was bliss and hell at the same time. Quitting those might be the hardest thing you've ever done in your life. Don't throw away the fact that you were able to quit. You deserve a lot of recognition for that - and it proves you have the strength to get though almost anything.

I hear you when you say you'll do anything to just feel well; even for just a little while and sometimes alcohol can a tempting answer. I've had many friends with the same symptoms - Not being able to sleep for days and wishing they could just get one good night's sleep. They really struggled with it for a long time and one of the ways they got a grip was to stop drinking. Completely. It was extremely difficult at first. They changed their whole life to get away from the stuff. It's a daunting and extremely tough concept and I don't think you should try it right now. Let's get you stable and sleeping before doing anything drastic like that.
Are you taking your meds regularly? At the same time everyday? This will help get you stable. Take your meds religiously, every day and night. A lot of medication takes time to build up in your system before you can notice their effects. Even if it seems like their doing nothing - and sometimes they don't if you're on a drug that doesn't work for you. It requires a lot of patience on your part, which is extremely difficult to provide when you're dealing with all these sleepless nights.

Something that helped me a lot during my really tough times was writing in a journal. Don't worry about the spelling or grammar or anything. Just write down everything that's going through your head at the moment. A friend of mind called it "word vomiting." It doesn't have to even make sense. Just get as many thoughts - no matter how little or insignificant they might seem - down on paper. For me it was like a magic trick. I felt so much calmer after doing that.
Another thing I use every night I can't sleep is listen to ASMR recordings on YouTube. ASMR is (generally) people speaking in a very calm voice about any topic you can think of. Most of them are mind-numbingly boring, but that's kind of the point! Try this one:


There is a whole ASMR community on YouTube if that video helps.

I have a few more ideas that might help, but try these and let me know how they make you feel: A little better, A lot better, no change, a little worse, much worse.

And don't be afraid of sharing too much about yourself! That actually helps a lot!

Keep us posted!
 
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