Discussions By Condition: Mental conditions

Unsure of anxiety or not, please help??

Posted In: Mental conditions 8 Replies
  • Posted By: Star88
  • August 21, 2008
  • 10:04 AM

Firstly, sorry for the extremely long post! There's just so much i want to say:

I've always been a fairly anxious person. I avoid social situations and just hide in my room whenever someone visits. During the holidays i much prefer staying by myself at home rather than going out with friends. Going travelling is always a difficult task for me as i am terrified of all the security in airports and would be so worried that there was something dangerous in my bag that i had accidentally overlooked. When we went skiing, i was nervous about three weeks beforehand as i didn't want to go to lessons and have to meet new people.
Every year the anxiety seems to get worse, especially now as i just turned seventeen and there are so many options awaiting me that i just cannot take. Every day before going to school i get anxious. Every friday night before going into work i can't sleep properly, and every time i think of work i start to get nervous. I usually end up feeling like this for about an hour into my shift, and then the feeling starts to subside. until the next shift. I'm terrified of driving because of all the things i have to remember and what could go wrong, as well as the fact that that would mean getting lessons and meeting my instructor. So i don't have my learner's license yet, when all of my friends have thier Ps. I refused to go to my very first maths class this year as i was late and everyone else was already seated. I dread being asked a question in class and sit there worrying about it before it even happens so that i cannot concentrate. I backed out of travelling to India again with my family because that was such a confronting experience for me, and the thought of travelling in an unkown country makes me amazingly anxious. I can't be home alone at night as i once freaked out and just hid in a corner crying all night and am terrified that will happen again. Any kind of appointment scares me, even catching a bus or talking to a sales assistant. And picking up the phone to ring someone is extremely difficult unless they are one of my close friends. I always need time to prepare myself being any stressful kind of situation, and i continuously need "thinking" time, as my thoughts get too much.
My physical symptoms are:
-trembling hands
-queazy stomache
-headaches
-hot flashes/ followed by cold flashes
-out of breath easily
-pounding heart

I usually always have a queazy stomache (butterflies, except much worse) but the others usually only occur when i am extremely worried rather than continuous. (though it does happen often). also i have hyperhidrosis for which i use a special deodorant, but when in a nervous state even that does not stop me from sweating (underarms and palms).

I've been to a psychologist but what he said didn't really help. Like it was good talking about everything, and how i felt, but the thiings he told me that were meant to relax me etc haven't been working.

What i really want to know is: Is this some kind of anxiety disorder? Or could i possibly be just a typical teenager and this is how i'm supposed to feel at this age? Am i overreacting? My psychologist didn't say whether i was or not. I'm so confused and scared of what i'm feeling, everyday. I'm missing out on so much, but i cannot help the way i feel.

Any comments providing insight to my situation would be gratefully appreciated

Reply Flag this Discussion

8 Replies:

  • Yes, this sounds like you have developed a bit of a social anxiety disorder, which yes is typical for your age group, but also prevalent among adults of all ages. I'm not sure what techniques for relaxation your psychologist suggested, but I would certainly suggest you develop a daily routine for relaxation. It's not like you breathe for five minutes one day and the anxiety just goes away, this will be something you do like eating and sleeping: all the time. When you go into the situation causing anxiety do your breathing exercises. This might be breathing in for five seconds holding the breath, then exhaling. Do this several times, until you start to feel better. Another stress reliever is exercise. Is there a sport you enjoy? I enjoy swimming, so I swim 4-5 times a week. Just yesterday I was feeling drained from having to socialize for four days straight. (parties, family get-togethers, ect..) After being in the pool, then the jacuzzi, I felt so much better. I felt relaxed, energized, and happier. One thing to mention is to build your confidence. Start to do things that make you feel good about yourself. Don't do things that make your parents or relatives or friends happy. Do things that make you happy. Maybe there was something you enjoyed doing as a kid, but gave it up like riding a bike. Maybe there is something you've always wanted to try, but think your too old or it's too late "I should have started doing it when I was a kid" or something like that. Those are all limiting. Creating a self that you like will build your confidence and lesson the anxiety, because if you are happy with yourself what is there to worry about? Take care. :)
    ojaimargarite 4 Replies
    • August 27, 2008
    • 02:37 AM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • Yes, this sounds like you have developed a bit of a social anxiety disorder, which yes is typical for your age group, but also prevalent among adults of all ages. I'm not sure what techniques for relaxation your psychologist suggested, but I would certainly suggest you develop a daily routine for relaxation. It's not like you breathe for five minutes one day and the anxiety just goes away, this will be something you do like eating and sleeping: all the time. When you go into the situation causing anxiety do your breathing exercises. This might be breathing in for five seconds holding the breath, then exhaling. Do this several times, until you start to feel better. Another stress reliever is exercise. Is there a sport you enjoy? I enjoy swimming, so I swim 4-5 times a week. Just yesterday I was feeling drained from having to socialize for four days straight. (parties, family get-togethers, ect..) After being in the pool, then the jacuzzi, I felt so much better. I felt relaxed, energized, and happier. One thing to mention is to build your confidence. Start to do things that make you feel good about yourself. Don't do things that make your parents or relatives or friends happy. Do things that make you happy. Maybe there was something you enjoyed doing as a kid, but gave it up like riding a bike. Maybe there is something you've always wanted to try, but think your too old or it's too late "I should have started doing it when I was a kid" or something like that. Those are all limiting. Creating a self that you like will build your confidence and lesson the anxiety, because if you're happy with yourself what is there to worry about? Take care. :)
    ojaimargarite 4 Replies
    • August 27, 2008
    • 02:37 AM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • Thankyou so much for the advice. My psychologist first had me doing CBT exercises but they didn't really work for me, so then he tried something called acceptance and commitment therapy, which worked while i was only mildly anxious, but didn't when i was facing a tough situation. I will try the breathing exercises, which was kind of incorporated into the A and C therapy, except this time i will persevere as perhaps i gave up too easily last time (something i tend to do a lot.) I really enjoy horse-riding and live on a farm with 6 horses, it's just it's hard to find time with school and work. Usually i only get to ride once a week, sometimes not even that. But i appreciate your reply, so thankyou very much and i'll let you know how it goes.
    Star88 4 Replies
    • August 27, 2008
    • 08:29 AM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • Anxiety and panic disorders are sometimes really hard to live with. I tried the relaxation thing and the talking it out thing. With this disorder,the only ppl who really understand it are those who have it unfortunately. PPl can tell us good and well how to cure anxiety but its easier said than done. Mine got so bad I finally asked family Dr for medication to help me cope. Not a tranquillizer like xanex or anything along those lines cus they sedate you, but an antidepressant which helps by taking it everyday. They take 4-6 wks to feel full affect. I dont always take them like long term, really they can be used for anxiety SSRI's they are called. These meds help ppl get a foothold and help U cope for the time being or long term, depends on you. Usually Im completely organic and try to work it out in my head by talking about it, but sometimes this just doesn't help and you need assistance with medication. Good Luck hon As EvErCat
    kitcat48 80 Replies
    • August 27, 2008
    • 11:03 PM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • Definitely let us know how everything goes. I think that's awesome that you live on a farm with horses. I also enjoy horseback riding. I don't get to ride as often as once a week, though. That's great. It sounds like you're managing your time well with school and work. It's great to hear you say that you will persevere with the breathing exercises and that you are aware that you gave up too soon the last time you tried. I didn't mention that I also have an anxiety disorder and have seen a psychologist, health practitioners, ect. Almost two years ago, I had an anxiety attack that was so bad it sent me to the hospital. After they ran all the proper tests they told me that my heart was pretty perfect and I was suffering from anxiety.(It was all in my mind) To this day, I have not taken any medication for the anxiety because I think of myself as a 'warrior', someone who is mentally strong and aware, someone who can battle whatever it is that makes me anxious. (I don't know if you're into star wars or anything, but the philosophy is helpful and good if you can look past the sci-fi aspect and see that it's really a metaphor for life: battling the dark side within ourselves to reveal who we really are. I can't tell you how much better I feel and I still have a ways to go. I'm better when I'm working out, breathing, hiking (being in nature), reading, writing or doing anything creative (b/c that's what I enjoy) and talking things out with myself on paper or with a trusted friend. Alright then, take care and good luck!Ojai-Margarite:)
    ojaimargarite 4 Replies
    • August 27, 2008
    • 11:51 PM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • Thanx guys. With the whole medication issue, my mum (who is a gastroenterologist) keeps asking me if i want to get some but i keep refusing cos, to me, that feels like giving up which is something i always tend to do. Plus i am truly scared of any side effects medication would have. Basically, my plan is to try all the breathing and muscle relaxation exercises i have heard and read about and see how i go from there. I had a go with it this morning as i was feeling intensely anxious when i arrived at school and was sitting in the canteen by myself, studying. There was no apparent cause but i was feeling so nervous, chest was all tight, breathing fast, heart pounding etc. So i started breathing in for 5 seconds, then pausing, then breathing out for five seconds etc. It worked a little, and i suppose it will just get better with practice and when i find out what works for me. Plus i had a chat to my maths teacher (two days ago i ran out crying after having a bad day and him asking me a question in class) and i feel better for it as now he has some idea of what's going on. I'm thinking of talking to my other teachers as i've had two what i guess are panic attacks in biology and one in theory of knowledge, so i guess they should know. It will be hard though, but i'm not going to give up!! So thankyou very much for your advice and comments!! :)
    Star88 4 Replies
    • August 28, 2008
    • 08:22 AM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • You just have a version of anxiety disorder/agoraphobia. Taking meds for it would be a bit crazy, since the side-effects are worse than the disorder, and probably wouldn't even cure it or even have any effect more than say a tranquilizer would. I wouldn't go to any more psychologists either. Talking it out can be good, but that's what friends are for. Talking to much to "professionals" can land you in mental wards, as many other posts on this forum have given account of. I would recommend doing "cognitive therapy" for yourself - a fancy term for just thinking things out and finding a perspective that defuses the anxiety. Some sort of therapuetic activity like art or exercise would also be good. IM me at Teamnorm@aol.com if you want to chat about any of the above or other questions.
    Non Servium 85 Replies
    • September 18, 2008
    • 10:31 PM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • Check out this website http://www.adaa.org/
    ejones7408 7 Replies
    • November 11, 2008
    • 01:18 AM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
Thanks! A moderator will review your post and it will be live within the next 24 hours.
Advertisement

Safe Sex With Hepatitis C

Prevent the spread of the hepatitis C virus.

Preventing Lung Infections

With COPD, it’s important to protect your lungs.

8 Health Dangers of Depression

Unmanaged depression can take a toll on your physical health.

Food Choices for Diabetes

What, when and how much you eat affects your blood sugar.

6 Exercises for Multiple Sclerosis

Ease your way into these stretching and strengthening moves,

Advertisement