T Nation

Suffering From Anxiety


#1

I was wondering have any of you ever suffered with anxiety if so did you get over it? If so how did you get over it because I kid you not it's kicking my ass.

It makes day to day life hell and some times it's very hard to imagine going on like it for ever which from what I know about anxiety is completely possible.

I've spoke to my GP about it and he offered me a bunch of meds that they like to push on you but I know from my mom who also has anxiety that they do more harm than good in the long run.

I guess I'm ahead in some respects as I know it's at least partially genetic - although I do not doubt my mom has through nurture has pushed some of the ideas that create anxiety chains of thought on to me.

I've always had anxiety attacks which are very similar to panic attacks since the age of 6 which let me tell you really sucks. I had a period of 3 years where I had no problems what so ever. My diet isn't really any different so I ruled this out although I spent 6months hanging around with the wrong crowd smoking mj I now know it is as nefarious as some people say it can be.

I was really hoping it was hormones but as my mom is 42 and still suffers from it I've lost hope. I would be really thankful if any of you could shed some of your life experience on the subject.

Thanks and peace!


#2

Hey dude. I know just what you mean, I think smoking mj made my anxiety so much worse. The first few months were fine, but then my body and mind started rejecting it. Regular exercise helps, though I'm sure you get plenty of that.

When I get anxious I get the logical part of my brain to take over and smack some sense into the anxious part. Like the last time I smoked weed (months and months ago), my heart started racing. I'm not proud to admit it but I've had drug-related heart issues in the past so my imagination ran with it. And the logical part of my brain was like "Seriously dude? When have you ever heard of someone having a heart attack from toking up?!" It's embarrassing but funny as hell when I think about it.

A natural herb (a legal one) that I have seen really good results with is Valerian root or extract. I drink tea with it before bed to relax - I kid you not, that stuff is like all natural vicodin haha. You don't feel incapacitated, just super relaxed. I hate how modern GPs just prescribe drugs to stop the symptoms. It's not curing anything! Last time I went to the doc for a physical to check out my heart, she prescribed me antidepressants. What the hell? Needless to say I didn't fill that script...

I think you need to figure out what external factors trigger anxiety. Like traffic or crowds or the impending destruction of the world by aliens. Anyway don't mean to thread jack, hope that helps.


#3

Hah yeah I tripped out once and my heart was going so damn fast I thought I was having a heart attack and all that was going through my head was "Well that'll show my friends who said no ones ever died from toking up."

I know it's mainly triggered existentially which is mainly the fact that one day I know I'm going to die. When I used to think about it I would get an anxiety attack and then comes the fight or flight. Run down the stairs so damn fast or punch the nearest wall. Now death doesn't bring about that response. Most of the anxiety now is sub conscious because theres rarely anything bothering me in my conscious mind.

But yeah to be honest I freak out about illnesses I believe I have every so often.

I thought my way out of it for 3 years and weed brought it back for sure.
I will try to get hold of some Valerian Root thanks a lot for your reply it means a lot some times even to know your not alone.


#4

I've been struggling with anxiety for as long as i can remember. Late in my teens came panic attacks. I can definitely relate BLF. There's a lot of things that can be done about it, but it aint easy. It took me years to somehow relearn to hang around people. The first advice i can give you is, keep reaching for your goals. Don't give up what you do, be it school, training, whatever. If you feel like shit at the thought of seeing others, than by all means surround yourself with people you thrust, people who are aware of your problems. Just hang around with your best friends as often as possible. They will help you far more than any meds on earth (not that i'm against them though - just from my experience).

As for MJ, alcool, even caffeine - the less you take the better you'll feel. Me, two cup of coffee instead of one in the morning and i'm done for a couple of hours, feeling like shit.

My mom too suffer from anxiety, and even if its been 15 years since we lived togheter, its like if by merely seeing her i'm been dragged to my old problems, taken by those fears.

As for the hormonal side, tribulus did helped me somehow, gave me some confidence.

Hope that help. Dont give up man


#5

Thanks man. I didn't know caffeine was such a large problem with it. Some days I will have 1-2 cups of tea and 1 or 2 cups of green tea. I'll try to go for 1 cup of green tea per day, see how it goes. Never heard of tribulus but I will check it out for sure.


#6

Usually for anxiety, cognitivo-comportemental therapy (litteral translation from french, no idea if it's right in english) works pretty well. So if you want to solve your problem that might be a good idea. About meds, benzodis are okay if you want to use them for only a short period of time because you dont wanna get hooked on those. But antidepressants works for anxiety problems and you wont get hooked on those (when you'll stop you will have to taper down however because of sides effect).

And btw, it's true that smoking weed can make things worse.

And do you drink a lot of coffea or redbulls or caffeine containing drinks?

And to SppookMayest, she probably prescribed some because you went to make your heart check when there was nothing wrong with your heart, then she concluded you had a panic disorder, which is treatable with antidepressants.

And btw, trying to avoid the situations that triggers anxiety crisis doesnt help, it will lead to biggers problems in the long term because its strenghtens (sp?) the circle that caused your first panic attack.


#7

Also, it helped me to perceive anxiety as situation related. For example, my panic attacks were at there worst during my time in university. When i got back to school 10 years later, it hit me hard : i couldn't sit in a class. Luckily for me, there wasn't a lot a sitting in a class in my carpentry course, but nonetheless, i had to find a way do deal with it. What i came with was, being afraid of totally losing control in such a situation i had to take matter in hands : so while i was stuck in a classroom, i tried to take as mich an active part in the course as possible. That way things wouldn't go completely out of my control (i wish i could say this better...).

Now, every time i feel anxiety merely kicking in, i try to find a way to not let the situation slip away. When i have a grasp on things i can kiss anxiety goodbye.


#8

Holosync relaxation cd's from Centerpointe Research are excellent for anxiety. As well as balanced diet of healthy food and excercise. Tai chi or chi gong are also great!


#9

I get Anxiety on leg day so every 5 days i go a little crazy thinking about the impending Leg Workout lol


#10

It would be an exaggeration to say I had an anxiety disorder, but I did go through a period where I seemed to overreact to mildly stressful things.

What worked for me was taking magnesium supplements. That's all I did and it just stopped happening. Easy and cheap to try, just don't get magnesium oxide as it doesn't get absorbed well. Try magnesium citrate or gluconate. As for dosage, I'd suggest 300-400mg a day to begin with on the assumption you're a bit deficient at the moment. They're usually 100mg tablets so you can just take with each meal, and in particular, take one as you go to bed so it can work while you're sleeping.


#11

I've tried Tai Chi and yes it does help but to be honest it only helps for the duration and an extended period of around 30mins - an hour after my tai chi session.


#12

Hmmmmmm...Well, consider Holosync. Go to the Centerpointe site and check the info. It is very unique and powerful. Changed me forever in a good way.


#13

So you get anxious thinking about getting ill? But do you actually get ill? You are just worried about it?

Why don't you try thinking about how many other people there are in the world that have illness already? I am a type 1 diabetic. I've been ill for a long time.

My point is that even if you do get ill, for one you are not alone. For two, assuming you live in the western society, there are plenty of medicines for you to take that will get you feeling better.

So I don't know if you just can't do this or what, but you need to convince yourself that illness really isn't something you should be worrying about. In all honesty your case sounds kind of weak to me. We are all going to die eventually. We are all going to be ill from something or another at some point. I don't see what the problem is?

Or try to put yourself in someone else's shoes. There are people in Africa that get very ill from things like HIV and can't do jack about it. Most of them die.

Or how about myself and the fact that I've been continually running out of money the past few years and the fridge gets empty and I run out of things like juice to counteract hypoglycemia from time to time because I cannot buy any. Now there's some real anxiety for you.


#14

Genetic my ass. Its all in your mind, something you have complete control over. Of course, this is something you need to learn how to do, control your mind instead of it controlling you.

I second the not doing anything about it will make it worse in the long term.


#15

If he had schizophrenia, would you say the same thing?

In medicine, you can usually see the lesion one way or another. In most psychiatric disorders, you cannot because they affect neurotransmittors, that doesnt mean the disease isn't real or that you can control it more easilly.

There is a genetic part in most psychiatric disease, not a reason to feel sorry and not do anything, but it's something you have to accept.


#16

Yeah I realise there are a lot of people with bigger problems. However it doesn't make living with anxiety any easier... I will try to beat it by no means am I going to lay down and let it beat me.

The existential side is where it all started definitely - but it can progress. Over the last few months the symptoms are more physical than mental which suggests that it has gone subconscious and possibly entrenched. There are good days and bad days... Some of the symptoms are very scary you can feel as though there are things crawling on your hand... Then there are the nervous twitches you get. Some of the time breathing just sucks or it's hard to walk around because everything seems mentally unfocused.

Also some times you can get derealization which is when everything around you leaves you disorientated and it's sort of like looking into a tv that you can't look away from and everything seems fake.

Anxiety sucks.


#17

Bruceleefan,

I would say that perhaps you have more than just anxiety? I could not tell you what though... I doubt that even experts can tell you exactly what you have as they can only use what they have learned about to deduce what your issues are.

Also, as far as I can see, from reading, genetics certainly play a big part.

There are considered to be 20,000 to 28,000 genes (traits/desirables/undesirables) in the human genome roughly.. So, I always say, ANYTHING is possible.

Therefore, until it's proven that you something, by proper experts, you would never know for sure.

For instance, I only found about 5 years ago, that one of my male cousins, felt the same way that I did about life.. ie. apathetic, nagging feeling of social avoidance in the brain, strong fear of being laughed at, anxiety, insecurity, poor task/project management, compulsive thinking. highly sensitive, procrastinations etc. We sort of fit into the "symptoms" of ADHD - mainly inattentive, but with a bit of impulsivity. He, obviously, has a totally different set of parents, with a totally different upbringing, apart from being a computard....... probably due to his "issues" making him socially avoidant and not "getting out there".

I am note that another cousin was recently in hospital for hypertension, age 35, male, but as he was not a fat roly poly like my cousin or I, I was at a loss to realise why this happened. I know that his parents were decent, probably too easy, in fact.

When I heard about the hospital thing I remembered back to the days when I heard that his father, a builder, just could not rely on him as an employee etc.

Now, along with my knowledge of psychology (not professional though) I deduce that both of my cousins an I, with my mother, have "symptoms" of susceptibility to stress situations, anxieties etc. WHY?
It can only be genetic.......

Now, mattlebee wrote about magnesium citrate or gluconate (don't know about picolinate, if it exists) using 300-400mg. Now, I know that some people are lactose intolerant, some people have enzyme issues which affect their estrogen balances and there are many genetic issues in the world.

So, magnesium is potentially a corrective nutrient, which some people MAY absorb better, depending on their learned eating habits etc....
So, some people may need more.. I certainly do not know for sure.

I have 50mg mag. tabs at home as well as 50mg 5HTP. I hoped that the 5HTP would help me with depression symptoms and I took at couple of 500mg doses, which are well above recommended, and I noticed zero difference, as usual, the same as anti=depressants. I did not experiment massively with the magnesium, but did not notice anything, but then, how long do I need to try???????? Is this due to bioavailability of the tabs, the quality, the lack of chelation etc, genetics, stressed body, stress hormones causing other issues. Like a needle in a haystack.

The only thing that is for sure, is that I don't know exactly and no one knows exactly.

I think that all we can do, is try different things and, if they work for us, great...

I know that some people with ADHD (maybe, more so hyperactive) can use cannabis to increase their dopamine (don't know how it affects other neurotransmitters as it is NOT a perfect science at all)
which apparently increases their ability to focus and shut off those annoying distractions that disturb people with what is currently known to be AD/HD

However, if you ever try that even once, don't take too much, as it can introduce temporary delusions/voices/noises/psychosis/paranoia, in no particular order, except I think psychosis is at end of the road.

I have never smoked cannabis and would not recommend it.. However, maybe trying it once, would calm you down, but then you become reliant and it maybe goes DOWNHILL.

Also, anxiety panic attacks are caused by elevated norephinephrine (noradrenaline in some countries), a stress hormone, which is released when one is faced with a stressful situation, or maybe your brain just overloads on negativity...
If you don't take any drugs currently (smoked, eaten, drunk etc), then it's easier to nail the issues down, as you are technically pure minded without any drug effects.
You could be caffeine sensitive as well....... the adrenal glands release adrenaline (epinephrine in some countries) in response to the stimulant effect. Caffeine, will give you energy, at a price.

Oh, and, of course (disclaimer lol) there could be many other factors as of yet unknown....

Doctor's etc should have access to a vast vault of information, but, as you say, drugs drugs drugs.... what a shame.
They are there to help everyone, apparently... o.O I certainly believe that some will do their best, but how to find them.........

Waiting for other members' opinions, who have actually tried cannabis, have proven AD/HD etc.....experience with magnesium, anxiety management techniques etc etc.

I always welcome discussion and the internet forums are a great thing for that.

Sorry for the long, lecturing post, but it's the only way I can try to get a point across.