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Anxiety/Panic no longer just in class, every day

jungleroomxjungleroomx Never pre-order anything.Registered User regular
edited March 2016 in Help / Advice Forum
So, ever since I got out of the Army and started attending school, I've noticed that I've been getting anxiety and panic attacks when in class. Before it was simply the inability to stay awake and being very conscious of my breathing.

I was worried it was a heart condition, so I've had several tests done to my heart and all of them come back normal. I've already been diagnosed with depression due to chronic pain from my service, but I haven't been put on medication because they felt (and I agreed) that the depression was not severe enough for them.

Now, this last semester in college, it's become almost unbearable. Shortness of breath, dizziness, eyes are feeling like they weigh a ton... and it happens in 3 of my 4 classes, like clockwork. Funny enough, it's the lecture classes only, and it's not because I'm tired. If I get up to use the bathroom or just walk in the hall it's immediate relief of symptoms, though most of the time they re-appear before the end of class.

It's getting to the point where I faked a doctors appointment to get out of my 2 hour lecture course this afternoon, after having a massive panic attack during my linear algebra class... a class I've never had a problem with before. I lied to get out of an ethics class. I'm having trouble squaring this.

I've never been diagnosed with any disorder, not officially, but I've had panic attacks previous to this. But this is damn near every day. I sit and concentrate to control my breathing and fight like absolute hell to keep my eyes open during all of my lecture courses, but the urge to pass out is damn near impossible to resist. I don't feel this way in all social situations, almost none of them. I do have introverted tendencies but I've always been able to fake extroversion fairly well.

I've got an appointment with the VA mental health clinic here, but that's not until May.

I've cut back my caffeine intake, started walking 2-3 miles in the morning again, and have changed my sleeping habits for the better. I just don't know what I can do at this point... is there anything I'm missing that might help?

"Oh god, you're so tough, with your fucking open nose and throat" - Bill Burr to Joe Rogan, after Joe said masks were for "pussies."
jungleroomx on

Posts

  • LostNinjaLostNinja Registered User regular
    edited February 2016
    My fiancé went through something similar to this. She was going through a bout of depression which triggered anxiety attacks (which she had a family history of).

    Your situation with sitting through class sounds similar to hers. It wasn't being around people (she works in a very public facing job where she interacts with people all day), it was just the act of sitting in class that made her anxiety spike.


    She went to the doctor and ended up getting prescription for it, but even on medication she had trouble sitting through classes. Ultimately, the best choice for her was to start taking all of her classes online.

    I can't say if that will be the best option for you, but depending on what degree you are pursuing, it is an option.

    LostNinja on
  • GnizmoGnizmo Registered User regular
    Check your campus for mental health services and see if they can fit you in sooner. They tend to be pretty cheap if not free. There definitely sounds like a simple commonality but not something I am comfortable working out online. I would suggest looking at the subject matter of your lectures and cross check it with any traumatic memories and see if you can find a loose connection anywhere. A general practitioner might also be able to prescribe something for the anxiety or refer you to a psychiatrist for more rapid results.

  • jungleroomxjungleroomx Never pre-order anything. Registered User regular
    edited February 2016
    Just a little more info:

    @LostNinja This is my last semester of school until I get my Bachelors, so going online probably won't be a necessity. I just need to make it to May. I was going along with the idea of just "toughing it out", and if it had remained similar to previous semesters I probably could have.

    @Gnizmo I'm not sure if it's the subject matter, because I've had these in statistics, history, and networking prior and now it's linear algebra, web commerce security, and ethics. I think it's the act of just sitting there and trying to absorb all of this info with a major project, 3 kids, and the prospects of re-entering the workforce as a civilian for the first time in 10 years.

    There is an on-campus mental health service. I've never utilized them, but I might have to considering the long waits the VA puts out.

    Thanks for the comments you two. Any help is appreciated because it's getting very bad.

    jungleroomx on
    "Oh god, you're so tough, with your fucking open nose and throat" - Bill Burr to Joe Rogan, after Joe said masks were for "pussies."
  • GnizmoGnizmo Registered User regular
    Just a little more info:

    LostNinja This is my last semester of school until I get my Bachelors, so going online probably won't be a necessity. I just need to make it to May.

    Gnizmo I'm not sure if it's the subject matter, because I've had these in statistics, history, and networking prior and now it's linear algebra, web commerce security, and ethics. I think it's the act of just sitting there and trying to absorb all of this info with a major project, 3 kids, and the prospects of re-entering the workforce as a civilian for the first time in 10 years.

    There is an on-campus mental health service. I've never utilized them, but I might have to considering the long waits the VA puts out.

    Thanks for the comments you two. Any help is appreciated because it's getting very bad.

    That is where I would put my money. Like I said though I don't know enough to make an educated guess though so don't take It as the gospel. It very much could be just the combination of it all, but the fact that it is only in class that makes me suspicious. More so because it is only some. All that said that could just be the tipping point and functionally coincidental.

    On campus stuff can be good. Studies have shown that up to 30% of the gains in therapy come from just what they call the therapeutic alliance. That is anyone with no training just not being an asshole can do a lot of good. You will get interns probably, or people otherwise working mostly under the guidance of someone more qualified.

    Sorry I can't be of more help but you seem to have a lot of this down. The good news is have a firm grasp of the situation at least. Positive ways to plan for and work with the stress of job hunting and all the crap that entails in civilian life is all I can say would be helpful, but I suspect if it were that simple for you that it wouldn't be panic attacks everyday.

    Have you spoken with your wife on this subject at any length? I don't know your relationship so I will refrain from speculation. I have known many in good relationships that would still take the world on alone. A good temporary resource if you haven't tapped it already.

  • jungleroomxjungleroomx Never pre-order anything. Registered User regular
    Oh I've told my wife everything. She is trying to help as best she can, but she has her own demons she has to battle as well. We kind of lean on each other because we're both kinda broke a lil.

    Yeah, I think I know whats wrong... I just wish I knew of some way to help make the symptoms more tolerable...

    "Oh god, you're so tough, with your fucking open nose and throat" - Bill Burr to Joe Rogan, after Joe said masks were for "pussies."
  • GnizmoGnizmo Registered User regular
    edited February 2016
    Cooks hookup is not a terrible idea and I found a helpful YouTube video for it! Dunno why I never thought of checking for a YouTube video before.



    You can also try Anxiety Release based on EMDR by Mark Grant. Name might be slightly off but author is not. Costs like $5. Worth a try.

    These are both more bandaids than anything. Please don't let it slow down the efforts to get someone to help more directly.

    It autoembeds? There aren't any rules I will run afoul of with that is there? I don't use the youtubes so dunno the forum rules on em.

    Gnizmo on
    jungleroomx
  • WiseManTobesWiseManTobes Registered User regular
    Autoembeds are fine , though you may want to adjust your formatting so the video is above the text not beside.

    Seconding that even if you do go the tough it out route, you still look to get actual attention paid to it in the future.

    Some tricks I use when toughing it out.

    Breathing, just force deeep long breaths in and out, focus on the timing , and try to ignore the other thoughts. It sounds irrational, but you can literally shake your head sometimes and shake your train of thought away from the anxiety thoughts.
    This helped me get the breathing timing proper, a deep breath when anxious is much longer than you think. Breathing Gif

    Do you have any favorite types of movie/show/genre? I'm big into Sci Fi, so sometimes I'll try and force myself to just make up some new sci fi in my head, yelling at the anxious thoughts in brain that they are in the way and I want to focus on the idea.

    The hard part with anxiety is the laser focus it wants to suddenly give to a certain thought, so a lot of times braking it's concentration on that thought can help.

    Steam! Battlenet:Wisemantobes#1508
  • GnizmoGnizmo Registered User regular
    Hopefully I fixed the formatting problem? I only view on mobile and it was below the text. Should be now I think? If not I will log on to a real computer and fiddle.

    WiseManTobesjungleroomx
  • JusticeforPlutoJusticeforPluto Registered User regular
    Talk to your professors if you haven't. Some may be assholes but most I had were very understanding of my various medical conditions and were willing to work around them. Its important your teachers don't think you're just skipping.

    My school also had a way to get a condition recognized by the school so teachers couldn't dick you over to much do to it.

    Gnizmo
  • GnizmoGnizmo Registered User regular
    Talk to your professors if you haven't. Some may be assholes but most I had were very understanding of my various medical conditions and were willing to work around them. Its important your teachers don't think you're just skipping.

    My school also had a way to get a condition recognized by the school so teachers couldn't dick you over to much do to it.

    It also doesn't hurt to be vague here I suspect. Mention being a vet and mention anxiety issues. Let them connect the dots. Dishonest perhaps, but playing every card you have is always good imo. Too many people don't think mental illness is real and fuck over people in need.

  • jungleroomxjungleroomx Never pre-order anything. Registered User regular
    edited February 2016
    Most of my professors wouldn't care and would work with me.

    One of my profs is retired Army. He said, in class, that PTSD stood for Pussy Transitioning, Seeking Disability, in reference to VA mental health care for vets getting out of the service. May or may not be related, he's libertarian edging on sov cit.

    I'm not telling him.

    jungleroomx on
    "Oh god, you're so tough, with your fucking open nose and throat" - Bill Burr to Joe Rogan, after Joe said masks were for "pussies."
    mysticjuicer
  • BillyIdleBillyIdle What does "katana" mean? It means "Japanese sword."Registered User regular
    I wish I could offer you advice. I used to have a really hard time during classes and it somehow stopped within the past year and a half. I have no idea why my anxiety/paranoia went away, it was a literal internal fight almost everyday. I would literally stare at the clock hoping time would pass faster so I could get out of there and hide in the bathroom.

    Definitely talk to your teachers, my biggest regret was being too ashamed to do so. It would have probably made those semesters easier on me, and maybe even helped me overcome them sooner.

    PSN: BillyIdle_
    jungleroomx
  • Pure DinPure Din Boston-areaRegistered User regular
    Most of my professors wouldn't care and would work with me.

    One of my profs is retired Army. He said, in class, that PTSD stood for Pussy Transitioning, Seeking Disability, in reference to VA mental health care for vets getting out of the service. May or may not be related, he's libertarian edging on sov cit.

    I'm not telling him.

    I used to be a professor. Here's something that I think more students should know:

    Almost college or university has a "Dean of Students" office or a "Student Affairs" office. Their job is to help students who are having a rough time, and to act as a liaison between students and professors. You can make an appointment with the Dean of Students, negotiate with them what kind of accommodations you need, and they will tell the professor what you need (like handing in assignments late, or relaxed attendance policy). But you don't have to tell the professor why you need the accommodations.

    So if you're ok telling your professors that's great, but for someone like this guy you should be able to just go over his head.

    NightDragonSoggybiscuittynic
  • WiseManTobesWiseManTobes Registered User regular
    Most of my professors wouldn't care and would work with me.

    One of my profs is retired Army. He said, in class, that PTSD stood for Pussy Transitioning, Seeking Disability, in reference to VA mental health care for vets getting out of the service. May or may not be related, he's libertarian edging on sov cit.

    I'm not telling him.

    How people like this are even allowed to be teachers baffles me, but is there anywhere to go to straight up report this guy?

    Steam! Battlenet:Wisemantobes#1508
    NightDragonJusticeforPlutoCambiata
  • jungleroomxjungleroomx Never pre-order anything. Registered User regular
    Most of my professors wouldn't care and would work with me.

    One of my profs is retired Army. He said, in class, that PTSD stood for Pussy Transitioning, Seeking Disability, in reference to VA mental health care for vets getting out of the service. May or may not be related, he's libertarian edging on sov cit.

    I'm not telling him.

    How people like this are even allowed to be teachers baffles me, but is there anywhere to go to straight up report this guy?

    Hes been reported often. The Oklahoma Regents are fairly shittastic when it comes to matters like this

    "Oh god, you're so tough, with your fucking open nose and throat" - Bill Burr to Joe Rogan, after Joe said masks were for "pussies."
    NightDragonLovely
  • WiseManTobesWiseManTobes Registered User regular
    Damn, well, as you have said though at least, you are in the final stretch, you're strong enough to get through it, and hopefully the light only brightens beyond it, and you can get proper help once free of the shackles chaining you to your anxiety.

    Steam! Battlenet:Wisemantobes#1508
    jungleroomx
  • mtsmts Dr. Robot King Registered User regular


    are these classes that actually take attendance?
    is it worse with tests?

    you definitely want to give the professor a heads up.
    see if you can just skip lecture on non-testing days.

    talk to the disability center on campus to see if you can get accomadations though it will be tough without a diagnosis.

    camo_sig.png
    Gnizmo
  • GnizmoGnizmo Registered User regular
    mts wrote: »

    are these classes that actually take attendance?
    is it worse with tests?

    you definitely want to give the professor a heads up.
    see if you can just skip lecture on non-testing days.

    talk to the disability center on campus to see if you can get accomadations though it will be tough without a diagnosis.

    Oh that is a good idea, but probably impossible without a doctor to help sign off at the least. That said it can probably be any doctor be it phd or md so long as they are in a relevant field. GP would be easiest I suspect. I don't know that you need a formal diagnosis but I do know that your chronic pain entitles you to help as is so the path is pretty clear.

  • mtsmts Dr. Robot King Registered User regular
    you also probably have a veterans thing on campus who could help you get accomadations especially if you throw around the GI bill expiring soon and you can't afford to put off finishing.

    camo_sig.png
  • Casual EddyCasual Eddy The Astral PlaneRegistered User regular
    I had very similar symptoms at work, and eventually went on a low dose of lexapro. I don't have depression but it treats anxiety in low doses.

    It worked very well and makes the symptoms of heightened anxiety tolerable. You might want to consider that or some other medication

    If you don't want meds, I would also recommend cutting out alcohol and seeing if that helps. Alcohol intensifies anxiety after you drink it.

    Definitely talk to the campus people ASAP - it sounds v unpleasant!

    Elki wrote: »

    Casual Eddy: best poster 2014.
    tyrannus wrote: »
    Casual Eddy: best poster of 2015

    gotta update that stuff man
  • mysticjuicermysticjuicer [he/him] I'm a muscle wizard and I cast P U N C HRegistered User regular
    If it's the act of sitting itself, is there any possibility of being able to stand or walk around in the lecture hall? Maybe near the back where it won't be disruptive, assuming you can still benefit from the lecture if you do?

    narwhal wrote:
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  • jungleroomxjungleroomx Never pre-order anything. Registered User regular
    I had very similar symptoms at work, and eventually went on a low dose of lexapro. I don't have depression but it treats anxiety in low doses.

    It worked very well and makes the symptoms of heightened anxiety tolerable. You might want to consider that or some other medication

    If you don't want meds, I would also recommend cutting out alcohol and seeing if that helps. Alcohol intensifies anxiety after you drink it.

    Definitely talk to the campus people ASAP - it sounds v unpleasant!

    I don't drink alcohol but 1-2 times a year.

    I actually was given some wellbutrin and it pretty much stopped all the symptoms cold today.

    "Oh god, you're so tough, with your fucking open nose and throat" - Bill Burr to Joe Rogan, after Joe said masks were for "pussies."
    GnizmoWiseManTobesPure DinBlameless ClericCalica
  • jungleroomxjungleroomx Never pre-order anything. Registered User regular
    So, the wellbutrin worked for a little bit.

    Things have gotten worse.

    Last night we had to call an ambulance because I was positive, positive I was having a heart attack. I've had panic attacks before but never ever anything on this level.

    My blood pressure was 170/120 and my heart rate was 120. The EMT's had a portable EKG and they said it looked normal, but I had to calm down because my blood pressure was dangerously high.

    After catching my breath and the chest tightness went away, I went into about 5 minutes of my entire body shaking as my blood pressure lowered.

    I decided it was time to quit smoking and caffeine, because I've heard they can exacerbate the issue... only this time I went into a furious rage as one of my kids spilled a little drink today. I blew up over a drink being spilled. Then I had another anxiety attack like last night, my blood pressure gauge showed me at 155/100, my heart rate 110, and I did the shaking thing and calmed down. The grandfather took the kids today at my request and I went and fed my toxic habits.

    I can't even make myself healthy without going crazy.

    I have a mental health appointment with the VA on the 15th. They can't see me any sooner. The university mental wellness clinic can't do anything else for me. The only other option I have is checking myself into the county mental health clinic, but I can't do that because I need to graduate.

    The initial VA screening said I have all the symptoms of PTSD, but I've never had a severely traumatic event in my life that I can remember. I never deployed. I also probably have anxiety, depression, and panic disorder. The appointment with the mental health doctor will determine fully what is going on. They said my injuries during service and my inability to do what I used to may be causing most of it (My right arm is practically useless these days), and I'm transferring back to a civilian world where I was homeless before joining up.

    God, writing all of this out makes it sound even worse...

    "Oh god, you're so tough, with your fucking open nose and throat" - Bill Burr to Joe Rogan, after Joe said masks were for "pussies."
    CambiataNightDragonCalicaZilla360
  • Forbe!Forbe! Registered User regular
    I went through something similar in my last year of university. I was going through some interpersonal issues with my significant other (long distance relationship), as well as trying to complete a thesis.

    I would have appointments/need to go somewhere like the grocery store, and I say to myself "NOPE" and drive/walk by without stopping, I would have a panic attack at the idea of having to go grocery shopping.

    After about 2 months of dealing with this I went to a doctor, and eventually was referred to a counselor. I never made the connection between my interpersonal conflict and the panic attacks, but they would essentially start after I talked to my significant other. She was going through some turmoil, I internalized it because the relationship was entirely one sided, and I was going through a stressful time in my own life, but had no one to share it with.

    Anyways. I worked on communication skills/ coping mechanisms with my counselor, and I've been panic attack free for 5 years. Getting help is the important step. I seriously was in the same position, laying on the floor, unable to breath, because I thought I was having a heart attack. I'm not a doctor, and yours may be far more complicated, but I went from unable to cope with my stress/missing 4 out of 5 of my classes a week, and shopping at 2:00 am to avoid human contact, to fully functioning again.

    Exercise also does wonders for me when I am stressed out as well.

    bv2ylq8pac8s.png
  • jungleroomxjungleroomx Never pre-order anything. Registered User regular
    Forbe! wrote: »
    I went through something similar in my last year of university. I was going through some interpersonal issues with my significant other (long distance relationship), as well as trying to complete a thesis.

    I would have appointments/need to go somewhere like the grocery store, and I say to myself "NOPE" and drive/walk by without stopping, I would have a panic attack at the idea of having to go grocery shopping.

    After about 2 months of dealing with this I went to a doctor, and eventually was referred to a counselor. I never made the connection between my interpersonal conflict and the panic attacks, but they would essentially start after I talked to my significant other. She was going through some turmoil, I internalized it because the relationship was entirely one sided, and I was going through a stressful time in my own life, but had no one to share it with.

    Anyways. I worked on communication skills/ coping mechanisms with my counselor, and I've been panic attack free for 5 years. Getting help is the important step. I seriously was in the same position, laying on the floor, unable to breath, because I thought I was having a heart attack. I'm not a doctor, and yours may be far more complicated, but I went from unable to cope with my stress/missing 4 out of 5 of my classes a week, and shopping at 2:00 am to avoid human contact, to fully functioning again.

    Exercise also does wonders for me when I am stressed out as well.

    I don't know about the complexity, I just know it's really putting an unwanted stranglehold on my responsibilities.

    It sucks that you've done through this, but it's kind of nice to know I'm not the only one.

    I'm hoping that you're correct, and I'm also hoping the VA just doesn't "pill me" and send me off.

    "Oh god, you're so tough, with your fucking open nose and throat" - Bill Burr to Joe Rogan, after Joe said masks were for "pussies."
  • Forbe!Forbe! Registered User regular
    You may need medication, you may not. I think you just need to do what is best for you. But stress and anxiety are strange creatures. Mine was cured with some simple counseling/breathing exercises to help me manage the symptoms, and working on communication to help avoid things that would trigger my anxiety. I still get anxious about things, I think some anxiety is healthy, but not what you're dealing with. I've never dealt with the VA, but make sure your wants are known. I think doctors in general are quick to prescribe medication when all they do is treat the symptoms, not the underlying cause. Push to get a referral to see a therapist, be an advocate for yourself.

    bv2ylq8pac8s.png
    jungleroomx
  • MayabirdMayabird Pecking at the keyboardRegistered User regular
    Have you had a blood test? This is important.

    I had very similar symptoms to yours, anxiety and blood pressure shooting up, thought I was having a heart attack, and a blood test showed I had very low blood potassium (and in fact looking at my history I had been recorded as having low potassium before, but the prior time I had been severely dehydrated from food poisoning so people didn't make a connection). I started a daily (and cheap) supplement of potassium and my blood pressure went down to normal levels and my mood picked up within a couple weeks. It didn't fix everything ever but it dramatically improved my situation.

  • jungleroomxjungleroomx Never pre-order anything. Registered User regular
    Mayabird wrote: »
    Have you had a blood test? This is important.

    I had very similar symptoms to yours, anxiety and blood pressure shooting up, thought I was having a heart attack, and a blood test showed I had very low blood potassium (and in fact looking at my history I had been recorded as having low potassium before, but the prior time I had been severely dehydrated from food poisoning so people didn't make a connection). I started a daily (and cheap) supplement of potassium and my blood pressure went down to normal levels and my mood picked up within a couple weeks. It didn't fix everything ever but it dramatically improved my situation.

    I've had blood tests previously. I'm going to have one when I go in on the 15th to check for mineral deficiencies.

    "Oh god, you're so tough, with your fucking open nose and throat" - Bill Burr to Joe Rogan, after Joe said masks were for "pussies."
  • jungleroomxjungleroomx Never pre-order anything. Registered User regular
    Forbe! wrote: »
    You may need medication, you may not. I think you just need to do what is best for you. But stress and anxiety are strange creatures. Mine was cured with some simple counseling/breathing exercises to help me manage the symptoms, and working on communication to help avoid things that would trigger my anxiety. I still get anxious about things, I think some anxiety is healthy, but not what you're dealing with. I've never dealt with the VA, but make sure your wants are known. I think doctors in general are quick to prescribe medication when all they do is treat the symptoms, not the underlying cause. Push to get a referral to see a therapist, be an advocate for yourself.

    I've already pushed for them to refer me to a real pain management doctor, since the government has essentially tied their hands in that respect for both therapy and medication (they're only really allowed to give out anticonvulsants now without several miles of paperwork). I think I can be a fly in someones ointment yet again.

    "Oh god, you're so tough, with your fucking open nose and throat" - Bill Burr to Joe Rogan, after Joe said masks were for "pussies."
  • GnizmoGnizmo Registered User regular
    Smoking and caffine will make your anxiety worse. Quitting them will makes them waaaayyyyy worse short term though. Get everything else under control before the severe stress of dealing with that shit.

    As for PTSD, all I can say is don't minimize your past. I don't know exactly what you mean by never seeing action, but you were injured in the line of duty so something happened.

    I never saw anything happen myself. I had to bear witness to the horrors of humanity after they happened. I saw and documented shit that no one wants me to begin to describe, even if I did. I say this not to vent. I say it to show you that your mind can bend and be damaged by what they call secondary trauma. The human brain can only handle so much and once it hits the limit it will start doing weird shit.

    Minimizing your own problems is dangerous. It is distinct from not letting your past rule your life. It sounds like bad shit happened. I am happy you will have someone to talk to about it soon.

    jungleroomx
  • jungleroomxjungleroomx Never pre-order anything. Registered User regular
    Gnizmo wrote: »
    Smoking and caffine will make your anxiety worse. Quitting them will makes them waaaayyyyy worse short term though. Get everything else under control before the severe stress of dealing with that shit.

    As for PTSD, all I can say is don't minimize your past. I don't know exactly what you mean by never seeing action, but you were injured in the line of duty so something happened.

    I never saw anything happen myself. I had to bear witness to the horrors of humanity after they happened. I saw and documented shit that no one wants me to begin to describe, even if I did. I say this not to vent. I say it to show you that your mind can bend and be damaged by what they call secondary trauma. The human brain can only handle so much and once it hits the limit it will start doing weird shit.

    Minimizing your own problems is dangerous. It is distinct from not letting your past rule your life. It sounds like bad shit happened. I am happy you will have someone to talk to about it soon.

    Yeah, with 3 young boys, quitting smoking/caffeine is simply not do-able right now until I get everything else squared away to at least a degree.

    I was injured from training. I never deployed. I just did one too many diamond pushups and carried a 100 pound radio one too many miles.

    I'm not trying to minimize my own issues, I just feel like what I went through aren't issues. When I speak to whoever is doing a mental diagnosis I will let them decide if they're trivial or not, though, because I've learned long ago that simple things you think mean nothing may actually mean a lot in the eyes of a professional.

    "Oh god, you're so tough, with your fucking open nose and throat" - Bill Burr to Joe Rogan, after Joe said masks were for "pussies."
  • FaranguFarangu I am a beardy man With a beardy planRegistered User regular
    Gnizmo wrote: »
    Smoking and caffine will make your anxiety worse. Quitting them will makes them waaaayyyyy worse short term though. Get everything else under control before the severe stress of dealing with that shit.

    As for PTSD, all I can say is don't minimize your past. I don't know exactly what you mean by never seeing action, but you were injured in the line of duty so something happened.

    I never saw anything happen myself. I had to bear witness to the horrors of humanity after they happened. I saw and documented shit that no one wants me to begin to describe, even if I did. I say this not to vent. I say it to show you that your mind can bend and be damaged by what they call secondary trauma. The human brain can only handle so much and once it hits the limit it will start doing weird shit.

    Minimizing your own problems is dangerous. It is distinct from not letting your past rule your life. It sounds like bad shit happened. I am happy you will have someone to talk to about it soon.

    Yeah, with 3 young boys, quitting smoking/caffeine is simply not do-able right now until I get everything else squared away to at least a degree.

    I was injured from training. I never deployed. I just did one too many diamond pushups and carried a 100 pound radio one too many miles.

    I'm not trying to minimize my own issues, I just feel like what I went through aren't issues. When I speak to whoever is doing a mental diagnosis I will let them decide if they're trivial or not, though, because I've learned long ago that simple things you think mean nothing may actually mean a lot in the eyes of a professional.

    I think the last sentence there is a healthy way to approach it. I had a similar outlook when I first started going to a counselor, that the things I had experienced were nothing special and that there was something wrong with me for not being able to cope with them. The counselor I visited helped me see a new way to view my past events that let me feel able to appreciate their effect on me without letting them dominate my thought processes and control my future actions. I hope that whomever you end up talking with can help you to gain the same peace of mind.

  • Casual EddyCasual Eddy The Astral PlaneRegistered User regular
    You might need a different medication. SSRIs affect everyone differently - when I first sat down with my doctor, he asked if anyone in my family was on an anti-depressant, and if it worked for them. This is because your ability to tolerate these types of drugs is often genetic. I was lucky and got on a very effective one my first try. Many people have to try more than one or several before they find one they tolerate that is also effective.

    I also didn't have a "good reason" to feel anxious to the point where I felt physically ill all of the time. I still don't really know what caused it, but ultimately it didn't really strike me as relevant - I just needed to get better.

    In addition to the medication, I've taken several steps you have already to deal with the anxiety. Exercise really helps, especially the really strenuous kind. Mental/breathing exercises can also help, just focusing on one's breath as you breath in an out and gently clear your head of all other thoughts. A solid night's sleep also really helps.

    This is a long shot but I also find sitting in a hot sauna to be very helpful. In case your campus gym has one, sweating it out for a while generally makes me feel better.

    Elki wrote: »

    Casual Eddy: best poster 2014.
    tyrannus wrote: »
    Casual Eddy: best poster of 2015

    gotta update that stuff man
  • RobonunRobonun It's all fun and games until someone pisses off China Registered User regular
    You might need a different medication. SSRIs affect everyone differently - when I first sat down with my doctor, he asked if anyone in my family was on an anti-depressant, and if it worked for them. This is because your ability to tolerate these types of drugs is often genetic. I was lucky and got on a very effective one my first try. Many people have to try more than one or several before they find one they tolerate that is also effective.

    Agreed. I've been dealing with depression for over 10 years. When I tried Wellbutrin it made me extremely irritable without actually relieving my depression. Until science can come up with a blood test to determine which med will work, trial and error is the only way.

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