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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My condition
I have PTSD and Anxiety and things were quite heavy this past two weeks. I feel reluctant to leave the house, all I want is stay in. Sometimes it gets so hopeless that I feel I'm going to lose my mind.

My Background (regarding anxiety)
I remember in my childhood that my mom & uncle also has anxiety. My first anxiety attack happened in college when I was preparing for an exam. The second one happened at office during a stressful grueling schedule.

I had an incident PTSD back in 2008 that caused my anxiety to become more frequent. On top of the incident, I lost income stability when I decided to quit my office job and pursue a business from home. It doesn't bring the amount of financial stability I expected from an office job.

I guess, my condition right now, the worries about my finances in the back of my mind..did contribute to my escalating anxiety. To top it off, I was living in a messy room full of clutter because lack of knowledge of organizational skills.

Worse Panic Blow in 2011

Things taken it's toll and the worse blow of anxiety attack happened 8 days ago when I was attending a dinner invitation with a friend. During that time, due to worry, I wasn't taking good care of myself. I lack sleep, stayed up late (thinking) and go on strict diets depriving myself. Anyways, it messed up with my digestion system and causing indigestion which triggers my anxiety into full blown panic mode after the dinner.

I suddenly feel my heart beat racing after I finished my food and felt somewhat stuffed (the food was good). Weather was cold and I was depriving myself of food for 3-4 hours before dinner so clearly there was already gas & acid build up in my stomach. To cut the whole story short, it was scary for me.

My friend was anxious as well, watching me try to catch my breath. I took a cab ride home because I need to be home asap due to the attack. Friends actually planned to hang out a bit after dinner for talks and coffee and catching up. But I couldn't join them and they were very worried.

On the cab ride back home, a few burps really help me calm down and within 5 minutes, I am back to my normal self. After consulting with a medical doctor, it was indigestion leading to a panic attack full blown. It was indeed frightening and not to mention embarrassing as well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
The Steps I am doing to Take Care of Myself & Deal with Anxiety & My Depression

I don't want to depend on chemical prescriptions because I did those before and it made me dependent on drugs. Besides, the side effects were not pretty.

After I educate myself about the anxiety and its connection to my digestion, I begin to list down my anxiety attacks and realize that all of them were related to my stomach. They happened after meals. I realize that something needs to be done regarding this.

These are the things I did this week and they helped me a lot coping with my anxiety and depression it causes me:

1. Take care of myself, eat & sleep on time every day. Get plenty of rest & good sleep every night.
2. Manage my meals. I avoid eating until I am stuffed because that can trigger anxiety attack.
3. Plan my daily menu & snacks. Avoid eating until late because it can build up gas & acid and cause acid reflux for me (trig erring anxiety).
4. Take supplements : B complex, magnesium, iron & multivitamin. Also take enzyme tablets with my meals especially when eating out to avoid anxiety attacks.
5. Drink apple cider vinegar (1 tbsp in 200 ml water) 3 times a day with meals to prevent heartburn.
6. Declutter my room. A friend told me that living in a messy cluttered place can make anxiety become worse. (I did major cleaning and decluterring yesterday!)

I have been taking the supplements and getting plenty of rest also managing my lifestyle since 4 days ago after reading a lot about anxiety and educating myself. I find a relief and i think it's working for me.

Anyone here also coping with anxiety? Please share your stories & methods/tips. Also we can discuss here and support each other here. Anxiety sucks and if left untreated, it can damage our lives but I believe that with proper management and education, treatment & nutrition, also sharing & support, anxiety can be managed and we can become productive individuals again.

Whew that was long. But I am glad to share this. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Sharing Helps

One thing I realize about my anxiety is that sharing does help, big time. My mom never talked to anyone about her anxiety, but I witnessed her panic attack during a flight overseas with her in the airport. It was frightening to watch your parent get an anxiety attack, as a child because, you don't know what's going on.

She refused to talk about it like it was some sort of embarrassing thing. Later she told me that she talked about it in church during church counseling and it gave her relief.

My close friends and my BF knows about my anxiety and they are always there to calm me down whenever I feel an attack is about to happen. I chose to open up to them, because I was starting to avoid meetings and avoid leaving the house with so many excuses.

At first, I was embarrassed and scared, but I was relieved that they were supportive and even make sure that I am comfortable whenever we meet or when we go out. I believe that sharing is effective for me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
3-4 days ago, I was deep in depression and didn't have the energy and will to leave the house. I was too anxious to go out. Yesterday I forced myself to leave and do some errands, I was feeling a slight attack at first but then it fades and I was back into my normal self going on with the activities.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
Friday, 21 Jan 2011 Update
Today I have a dinner invitation from a friend, at a restaurant. I am a bit anxious about going to a public place which is crowded and meeting people. But what has to be done has to be done. I don't want to let the anxiety prevent me from living life.

Dinner will be served around 7, so I have to snack on something at home to keep my stomach calm so no gas is building. Since my anxiety is linked to my stomach, then I have to manage myself and take precautions.

Precautions :
- carry enzymes tablet to drink with dinner
- wear warm clothes & keep myself warm because the weather is so windy & cold
- bring a small bottle of water to prevent dehydration.

I will post again the result after I get back home. Wish me luck! :)
I am optimistic I can do this without getting anxiety.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Update After Dinner Report, Friday 21 Jan 2011

I am home now..whew! All the precautions I did, they do work, yay! I am glad to say that they work well :) I had a mini meal at home before I go because my stomach already feel hungry, to avoid acid & gas build up.

At the restaurant, I ordered grilled fish & a chilled milk shake because cold milk can help neutralize acid (digestion). A friend told me that. I doubt it at first, but then was relieved that the milkshake does calm my stomach! :) I also took my enzyme tablet before the meal and it works very well.

After finishing dinner, we went for frozen yoghurt (contains probiotics, which also helps digestion). I enjoy it very much. Physically, I feel comfortable and calm. No heart palpitations, no feeling of gas, acid reflux whatsoever that usually triggers my anxiety.

Psychologically, I admit I was a bit anxious at first when I left the house and arrive at the restaurant, I was afraid that I would get an attack, but I am determined that I did my best to manage my meals and take precautions. I almost let the anxious feelings take over me, but then I remember this thread that I post, I remember the forum and realize I have to deal with it and have to overcome this. So, I stayed at the restaurant and allow myself to overcome anxiety and enjoy the meal & conversations.

Conclusion:
Dinner was fine, anxiety free & I did enjoy some good laughs.
I am so glad that I let myself take a chance, manage myself and enjoy the positive outcome. I am back home now, safe & comfortable.

I will post regularly about my anxiety and how I manage it on a daily basis. I believe that I can manage my anxiety and enjoy a quality life again.
 

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Have you ever taken 5HTP for your anxiety? Our nutritionist suggested it for us. It has been helpful.
 
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I have some anxiety too.
 

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I have ptsd and anxiety. PLus stomach issues. So i know what your going through.
 
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I have ptsd and anxiety. PLus stomach issues. So i know what your going through.
Yes it's not easy but I am trying hard to be strong.

Moving The Thread to My BLOG

I am moving the contents of this thread on my Blog and will update it daily.
Here's my blog address : Frugal Village Forums - My Journey to Simple Living & Managing Anxiety
Thanks for everyone that post here and care for me. I almost get a panic attack and I am in depression today. It's so overwhelming. I will post about it in my blog. See you there :nopompom:
 

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For me getting regular exercise helps to sort out my mind. That is basically walking at a really fast pace.

Before bed I will play meditation music for sleeping and lie on the floor and do deep breathing exercises to help me relax. There are also some great yoga moves to help relax areas you might keep stress. For me that is in my upper shoulders and neck. It has helped me alot to relax and be able to get a good nights sleep. For me yoga is a great way to start training yourself to relax and calm down.

I hope you are seeing someone that can help you develop new habits and ways to deal with anxiety. It does take time and patience.

Hang in there and take one thing at a time. You have a lot of great ideas and willingness to change. Just try not to do to many changes all at once.
 

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Anxiety is often genetically passed on - my grandmother, mother, two aunts and an uncle have it. I've always been a little claustrophobic, and struggled once or twice from depression, but my anxiety really kicked in at age 43 - a relationship ended and took with it my last chance for having a biological child within a traditional family, I lost my job, my dad almost died - I was having such awful anxiety, but really didn't recognize it until I went to a therapist. Once she learned of my family history and my symptoms, she immediately identified it. I went on a low dose of Lexapro and it has been a godsend. Of course I also kept up with therapy as long as I needed it. I have had a few panic attacks and they are so scary, but I'm usually able to take deep breaths and get through them.

Some of my triggers - not getting enough sleep, being overly warm, not eating every three-four hours.

What helps - putting sleep at the top of my list; dressing in layers so I can take them off if I feel warm; keeping healthy snacks with me; and exercise.

I've been on Lexapro for almost four years now and the only time I was able to go off was when I was exercising 3-4 times a week. I rarely have panic attacks now or have much anxiety or depression. Of course, my life has turned around - I now have a job I love and am making good $; I'm adopting a baby; feel financially secure.

My mom didn't talk a lot about her anxiety when I was young, but as I've gotten older, she's shared more and more - and I'm so glad she did. Also, I've found that as I've opened up about it I found out it's so common - tons of my friends and coworkers have anxiety issues and are on some type of med. Fortunately I've never had any negative side effects. What sucks about panic attacks is that once you have one, you start thinking about them and worrying you're going to have one and that can send you into a panic attack. ARGH.

Sending you hugs and hoping you can continue to manage this and just enjoy life.
 

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I am trying to find it, I live in SEA now.
Thanks for the suggestion :)
I got my 5HTP at a health food store. I also occasionally use GABA, purchased at the same health food store. I use both based on the recommendations of a book called the Mood Cure.

GABA: The Brain's Own Anti-Anxiety Medication: Feel Calm Without The Side Effects of Anxiety Drugs.

I suppose it goes without saying that you should do a lot of research and probably talk to your doctor before taking any of this.
 
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