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Advice from anxiety sufferers...


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Hi, all-

 

This has been a particularly trying time for me with anxiety with the current health crisis in the country. I am very much into herbal remedies but I have had a prescription for .25mg Xanax for the last 10 years that I have used quite intermittently unless I was having an acute situation and trouble sleeping. I only take it at night. Never during the day no matter how anxious I am.

 

I have found myself taking half of a .25 mg almost every night for the last few months, mainly to go back to sleep after I wake up. The last few nights, I have taken it to get to sleep because I have been so overtired that I have been wired. Last night, for the first times in 10 years, I took .5mg and I know that’s a low dose but I always swore that I would not up my dose and If I did, I would take measures to get back to lowering the dose or not taking it and finding alternative remedies.

 

That is my story. I would love any advice. I feel like if I’m laying there in bed for a long time, I have two options and I have to make a decision to choose the lesser of two evils which is 1) take meds which I would prefer not to take or 2) possibly lay there for hours and hours and feel badly the next day which I would never choose. So, it feels like taking the meds are the path of least resistance. But I don’t want to take meds every day.

 

Thanks for any advice!

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Sleep deprivation and anxiety only weakens you immune system more. If talk therapy, yoga, physical exercise, hermal remedies may not help, take what is prescribed by your doctor. I'm in New York, and like you, we are all just trying to get by. Very stressful for all.

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you've pm'd me in the past about this .

You have an anxiety disorder that isn't going to go away. At some point you embrace it and take the help that is offered in order to feel comfortable. There is no shame in that

 

I hear all sorts of stories about xanax being addictive. I've had a prescription for it for years and I've never had any issues taking it for periods of time (primarily for sleep) and then not using it. It's never had any adverse effects for me either. But this is my experience.

 

What I hear in what you are saying, it is the resistance to the 'idea' of taking anything at all. (the lesser of two evils) The only person judging you - is you.

It's not a form of weakness or a negative that you need to take something to feel comfortable or to sleep.

 

If you had a headache would you take Tylenol?

If you were diabetic you might have take insulin.

 

People with anxiety disorders often times have to rely on something during stressful times. My anxiety is high during this time. So I understand what you are experiencing.

 

Be kind to yourself and try to change the way you view it. That's the only thing standing in your way.

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Have you tried yoga and meditation?

i have had good results acute case of anxiety here not on medicines.

You need to be a regular with a routine until it becomes a lifestyle, just telling you what is working for me. Initially it was tough but slowly you get hooked on to it, there are setbacks you lose patience , focus , but start slowly then build on to what suits you.

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People can definitely abuse Xanax to get high...but it’s done with *intent* to misuse it.

 

You are wary of potential problems and you are extremely disciplined about taking this medication as prescribed.

 

I’m not a doctor and I don’t know you, but I hope you have no hesitation or guilt or any other issues about availing yourself of any and all tools, including Xanax, that help you feel comfortable in your own skin.

 

Best wishes!

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Ok so you know how it works for you and so that is a huge part of taking it. Many people are having huge upticks in psychological distress, due to corona and all the ramifications from it. Better than big increases in drinking, street drugs, etc.

 

But hey, whatever it takes to get to the other side of this.

I have had a prescription for .25mg Xanax for the last 10 years
Just don't resort to this:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hTxg_dpJhPU

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Thank you all so much!!! Seraphim, thank you for sharing your story and Reinventmyself, I just saw our last exchange and that was when I was having a bad time last time and I really appreciate (d) your advice!!

 

I really want to start a yoga routine again but I do Qigong (like Tai Chi) and I do try to meditate but I don’t do it well. I do Yoga Nidra most nights which is nice. It’s great to know that others are in the same boat even though I wish none of us had this anxiety around the current events.

 

Thank you all for making me feel better about the meds.

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In some ways, I'm an anxious person and a worry wart. I cope with my anxiety and stress by serious dieting, exercise and lifestyle changes. I feel so much better nowadays and overall.

 

In the past, before my 14 year old calm, extremely well behaved, quiet Golden Retriever passed away, she was a great stress reliever for me. Because of her, I forced myself to take two walks per day; once in the early morning hours before work and after work hours plus my other weekly workout exercises. Other times, we'd play together with her tennis ball at local parks, near the golf course in my neighborhood, green belts in the subdivision and the like. She had a great calming effect on me and my household.

 

If you're not sure about acquiring a pet, I suggest either fostering a dog (or cat) or volunteer as a dog walker for your neighbors.

 

Try alternate natural methods for your anxiety. I hope it works for you.

 

The best advice is from your doctor and if he or she recommends prescription drugs for you.

 

Personally for me whether it's my being depressed over something in the family (relatives / in-laws, for example), fixing life and life's situations works for me as opposed to reaching for drugs because yes while drugs are helpful, for me I prefer to fix my life in order to feel truly happy, whole and complete. Fixing my life gives me control which is empowering.

 

At any rate, I hope you feel better, Nebraskagirl14. Btw, one of my friends is from Wichita, Kansas! Close enough in the Midwest! :D

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In some ways, I'm an anxious person and a worry wart. I cope with my anxiety and stress by serious dieting, exercise and lifestyle changes. I feel so much better nowadays and overall.

 

In the past, before my 14 year old calm, extremely well behaved, quiet Golden Retriever passed away, she was a great stress reliever for me. Because of her, I forced myself to take two walks per day; once in the early morning hours before work and after work hours plus my other weekly workout exercises. Other times, we'd play together with her tennis ball at local parks, near the golf course in my neighborhood, green belts in the subdivision and the like. She had a great calming effect on me and my household.

 

If you're not sure about acquiring a pet, I suggest either fostering a dog (or cat) or volunteer as a dog walker for your neighbors.

 

Try alternate natural methods for your anxiety. I hope it works for you.

 

The best advice is from your doctor and if he or she recommends prescription drugs for you.

 

Personally for me whether it's my being depressed over something in the family (relatives / in-laws, for example), fixing life and life's situations works for me as opposed to reaching for drugs because yes while drugs are helpful, for me I prefer to fix my life in order to feel truly happy, whole and complete. Fixing my life gives me control which is empowering.

 

At any rate, I hope you feel better, Nebraskagirl14. Btw, one of my friends is from Wichita, Kansas! Close enough in the Midwest! :D

 

Thank you, Cherylyn!

 

I actually have three amazing dogs. I lost two in the last 6 months which was horrible. And yes, I adore them.

 

And I agree about changing one’s lifestyle, thank you :-)

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Thank you, Cherylyn!

 

I actually have three amazing dogs. I lost two in the last 6 months which was horrible. And yes, I adore them.

 

And I agree about changing one’s lifestyle, thank you :-)

 

You're very welcome, Nebraskagirl14! :D

 

It's great that you have 3 dogs! They're "woman's best friends!" I'm terribly sorry for your loss. It is horrible indeed. I agree, dogs are adorable.

 

Yes, lifestyle changes help immensely. Thank you for your kind words. :smug:

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I've been on SSRI over half of my life and it works well for me. I work a stressful job in healthcare as a healthcare professional in a supervisor position with a lot of responsibilities and, at times, life/death situations. I do well in this job and I even work on my Masters part time. I don't think I could do any of this without the help of my medications. I have diagnosed severe depression/anxiety from a young age.

 

Look, I'll be blunt - I do believe in non-pharm approaches to a point but for some, possibly you, it doesn't help anymore. You're taking Xanax nightly now to sleep to deal with your anxiety and you feel a lot worse. Herbal and alternative methods are nice but if they ain't working, they ain't working. I understand the desire to be off all meds but you need to be honest with yourself going forward. Are you willing to stay miserable/anxious if it means not taking a certain med and nothing else you try seems to do the trick? Why torture yourself?

 

I hope you can see a good doctor who can alleviate some of your fears and find something, even if it's just temporary, that works for you.

 

Because of COVID, I've had to go up on one of my meds. I am still doing school (online now) and working full time during the pandemic, thanks to that.

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This is not meant at all to replace meds but check out the Weil method of 4-7-8 breathing. I do not have an anxiety disorder but have insomnia/sleeping issues on an off for many years now. Including now. I practice this type of breathing when I can't sleep and also when I feel anxious. It's wonderful.

 

I wish you all the best.

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What anxiety meds are safe to take during the day and that are safe to drive and go to work? My doctor had put me on Ativan previously, but I couldn't drive or go to work while on it. Which means it was useless because my anxiety was and is currently related to going to work.

 

My doctor had also previously put me on an antidepressant for pain management. I wonder, are those effective to manage both depression and anxiety?

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Clonazepam doesn’t affect my ability to drive or work whatsoever but I take a tiny maintenance dose. My husband takes 100 mg of Zoloft for anxiety no driving or work issues at all. Mind you it takes a little bit to get used to these medications.

 

The one that the doctor just gave me for sleep just sent my brain for a loop but I’m not anxious about anything. It will take getting used to.

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Clonazepam doesn’t affect my ability to drive or work whatsoever but I take a tiny maintenance dose. My husband takes 100 mg of Zoloft for anxiety no driving or work issues at all. Mind you it takes a little bit to get used to these medications.

 

The one that the doctor just gave me for sleep just sent my brain for a loop but I’m not anxious about anything. It will take getting used to.

 

Hm, it might be worth asking my doctor for a small dose. I am an anxious person but have usually been able to power through. I don't worry about "what if's" normally. But with this pandemic I worry, not so much about myself since I feel if I die I have lived long enough and my adult kids are set and will be fine, but I worry about my elderly cat. I couldn't expect anyone to be willing to come into an infected house to retrieve her if I got sick and I couldn't let her stay here incase I infected her. It's a long shot but it's really the only thing worrying me.

 

I think it's worth asking my doctor anyway, though. Thanks for the recommendations. And sorry for hijacking your thread, Nebraska!

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