Medical Questions > Mental Health > Anxiety and Stress Forum

Anxiety and Stress vs. Something More Serious.

Well, I have been reading a lot on this forum for a few months, and I have have finally decided to post for some help.

I have some mixed emotions/signs and symptoms going on. It drives me crazy because I am a nurse, so I get stuck in self-diagnosing, trying to fight my mind and all its anxiety, and trying to rationalize everything so I'll calm down, sometimes it helps, but only for a short time. Its definitely a power struggle going on in there, and my anxiety seems to be winning.

I have had an up and down road since about last February. I have had many life changes, mostly sudden. From rekindling an old relationship that I had been trying to get over for some time, to moving to a new town and moving in with each other, (we are great now) taking on a new job that demands a lot from me, and even the loss of a pregnancy.

I have many symptoms, such as brain fog, "memory loss" (I seem to pick and chose what I want to remember such as forgetting where I put something, but I can recall a whole conversation I had earlier that morning) of course anxiety, muscle twitches (seem to only happen when I think about them), difficulty making decisions, I get overwhelmed easily, and so on.. I don't really have a hard time sleeping, but I have noticed that I dream A LOT.

My mind is torn between knowing/BELIEVING that this is anxiety, and trying to diagnose myself with a rare disease. I'm terrified to go to the Dr.. Even as a nurse, KNOWING that these are all symptoms of chronic stress/anxiety, I still manage to scare myself into tears by thinking something is serioulsy wrong with me.

I have always been an anxious and paranoid person. Ex: I remember crying when I was five because I was afraid of dying or thinking I had cancer or AIDS. I have always obsessed over some kind of illness. My recent infatuation is Huntington's Disease. Even though I have no real physical symptoms and no family history.

I guess its hard because to me I should be able to control this, and since I can't, I refuse to attribute it to anxiety, I think its something more. Even though I know I do have anxiety. It even runs deep in my family.

I don't know what to do, I'm embarrassed to see a doctor here because its a small community and I don't want any of my fellow nurses knowing. For the most part, no one can tell when something is wrong, the only person I confide in is my mom, whom has dealt with this demon also. I can usually carry on a conversation, laugh, and joke. But in my head, my mind is going a million miles per hour. I think I may have a hint of ADD to add on to the OCD, hypochondria, GAD, etc... I just want ways to control this, I really don't want to get on medication.

It is an awful feeling being able to rationalize it but still not understanding. I think for a while I had post postpartum hormonal issues, and I'm not sure how long this can last for.. I lost the baby almost 6 months ago, and I was 3 months along. My HCG is zero, I'm not sure about my other horomones.

Does anyone have some words of advice? I'm only 25, and I want my life/mind back. Like I said, I've always been anxious, but it has gotten worse.


Thanks SO much for any feedback.
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First Helper shopzalot
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replied October 17th, 2011
21 views, and no posts Sad
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replied October 18th, 2011
Anxiety, Depression and PTSD
There is clearly something not right at the moment in your head. We all go through bad patches and while those things impact our lives for some people it gets internalised and comes out in seemingly unrelated ways.

You seem to have a lot of preconceived notions about what you may or may not have, what caused it and how you feel it should be treated (i.e. without medication).

You're not going to like what I have to say, but if you're actually serious about feeling better then you need to take action and go see a PDoc. It sounds like you could also use some therapy - either short or long term to figure things out.

If your town is small, then get in your car and drive to an hour away to another town.

The one thing I can tell you is that if you're feeling the way you feel right now, it is extremely unlikely you're going to wake up one morning and just be better.

You've taken the first step in reaching out for help, now get on the internet and find a psychiatrist or therapist that you can see to get some real feedback. If nothing else, you'll at least be able to stop worrying about what's wrong with you...

All the best.
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replied October 18th, 2011
Have you tried linking all of this to dyslexia? They're all symptoms of it (I think). It just sounds like you have a bit of an over active mind. I'm sure there is somewhere you can get tested?
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replied October 18th, 2011
There is clearly something not right at the moment in your head. We all go through bad patches and while those things impact our lives for some people it gets internalised and comes out in seemingly unrelated ways.

You seem to have a lot of preconceived notions about what you may or may not have, what caused it and how you feel it should be treated (i.e. without medication).

You're not going to like what I have to say, but if you're actually serious about feeling better then you need to take action and go see a PDoc. It sounds like you could also use some therapy - either short or long term to figure things out.

If your town is small, then get in your car and drive to an hour away to another town.

The one thing I can tell you is that if you're feeling the way you feel right now, it is extremely unlikely you're going to wake up one morning and just be better.

You've taken the first step in reaching out for help, now get on the internet and find a psychiatrist or therapist that you can see to get some real feedback. If nothing else, you'll at least be able to stop worrying about what's wrong with you...

All the best.
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replied October 18th, 2011
You have been dealing with so much of trouble in a narrower span. Try relaxing out a bit. The symptoms that you have talked about in your post can be helped with maybe a counseling in the first place. You have not mentioned whether you are taking any medication currently? I am so sorry to hear your loss, but I wish everything to get better for you soon.
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replied October 19th, 2011
Anxiety vs Stress Please Read
I love that I read this and I am irritated by the response that you got. Until you experience this uncontrollable feeling of obsession to know whats wrong with you can never understand. I can totally relate to what you are going through I honestly got to the same place you did looking up all the symptoms, I would go to the hospital and check myself in once a week and battle to not go more, I went to the therapies many I was put on the antidepressants which made me worse I wasnt depressed I was scared. I had many young people in my life throughout my life pass away from random issues mostly cancer. I also lost my father when he was 43 cancer unexpected. My father did lose 4 sisters and his father to Huntingtons chorea. My brother at 19 in a car accident (which doesnt freak me out although I miss him). Just five years ago I went over the edge when my mom had a heart attack right in front of me and my children and I had to do CPR while my children 5 and 4 were watching and crying. Became obsessed that something was wrong with me and I was going to die from heart attack, stroke, cancer, thyroid cancer, you name it I was going to have it TOTALLY SUCKS I had a doctor that I loved and I would go into his office at least once a week. He was my angel and brought me back to reality. Heres what made it click for me I went into his office this time thinking that I had brain cancer. He finally after telling me stories to calm me down and rationalize in the past said this to me
I want to say something to you if we did a test and I came back to you and told you that you had brain cancer, WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO ABOUT IT? I looked at him like wow um well hmmmm, he said We would go to the next step, and then we would go to the next step and then so on so on and so on Basically what he was saying to me is that we can not control what life has or is going to hand us so therefore live life everyday He said that I am wasting the good things in life worrying about things that are not only not there but that if they were there I have no control so why constantly worry about these things. I hope this helps you and I hope its not confusing. This made it click for ME, what makes it click for you is going to be what makes it click. I did realize also from losing my father, brother and best friend to cancer that what I was worrying about is how the people I leave behind are going to hurt thats what was making freak out I needed to be in control of my destiny and know before the doctors knew (crazy thinking not actual coo coo but unrealistic), I still have the anxiety but not like I did I am very high strung but I had to realize that I am impacting my children by the constant worry and I was missing out on a lot of things with them. Again I hope this helps and I am so glad that I read that someone else feels the same thing that I felt and feel at times IM NOT ALONE thank you for posting what you did. I do not think that meds, therapists or any of that psychological things work I think its inside of a normal healthy individual sometimes your mind can be a powerful thing but its defintly not crazy.
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replied October 19th, 2011
Thanks so much for the replies.

@fullcirle, I appreciate you taking the time to respond.

@saraelizabeth, I do not have dyslexia, thank you for the suggestion.

@franky_keats, thank you for your kind words, I am not on medication, and I have not received counseling. and relaxing a little bit, is definitely what I need to do Smile

@shopzalot, Thank you SOOO much for your post. It is nice to know that I'm not alone also. I have only seen a Dr. once for my anxiety, and that is because I had a full blown panic attack, it literally hit me out of nowhere, well at least consciously, I didn’t feel any precipitating factors, this was at work, so my co worker made me walk over to my PCP, (we are all in the same area). He prescribed me Xanax and sent me on my way; needless to say, I never picked up the RX. I'm stubborn, and that is putting it lightly. Nurses seriously make the worst patients. I know the first reply said something about driving an hour away to get help, I know that sounds so easy, but it’s not, like I said, I have a HIGH stress job, with me and one other nurse, running a full clinic and a doctor only here on some days, so taking a day off each week or every other week to drive to the nearest city which is two hours away, isn't an easy solution. It would be nice though. Maybe I should ask a PDoc to work on Saturdays for me?? Wink I can't imagine how you feel, with so many people close to you passing away, my heart and prayers go out to you, and also kudos for doing as well as you are, I would be a wreck. I think that the loss of my pregnancy kind of brought me back down from an invincible level, not that I thought I was invincible, but I used to be able to calm myself down from fears of diseases/conditions etc.. by thinking, it will never happen to me. Well, it did, I had a molar pregnancy, which happens to 1:1000 people, never in my wildest dreams would I have thought this would happen, I had to have an emergency D&C, and I had to get my blood checked every week for two months, and now every month for a year, because a molar pregnancy can cause cancer. I don't know if this is what subconsciously made it worse, but I know that it didn't help a whole lot, even though I try not to think of it much. I know that I am under high stress and anxiety, and it makes it worse because I am so unforgiving of myself, I make one mistake (okay a few), but nothing major, something as simple as writing 2010 instead of 2011 and I go into panic mode, I start telling myself I shouldn’t have done that, why did I do that, I must have some disease process going on that’s causing my brain not to think right, giving me dementia slowly, etc etc.. YES, OBSESSIVE thoughts are an ugly ugly thing and no one knows how it feels, unless they have experienced it, which I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy. I keep giving myself deadlines to go to a dr. and give up the fight, but every time I reach the deadline, I extend it, because I just feel like I should be able to control myself (I am very Type A, I like you did, think I should be able control my life/destiny) even though I know anxiety/depression runs DEEP in my family. That’s actually the only significant family hx I have besides high blood pressure. I know I’m wasting a lot of time with this, for the most part, I try to be happy, and I ignore it the best I can, what’s been helping me is slowing my thoughts down, and lots of deep breaths. I hope that if/when I do decide to see a doctor, I find someone I can trust, like you have. I’m very happy that you responded to my post. I’m also very happy to see that you have kids and seem to be raising a good family. I don’t have kids yet, but I hope to sometime in the future Smile and I worry about how anxiety/stress is going to affect me when I do have kids. I hope to hear back from you!
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replied October 19th, 2011
Ha I get it..... You can definatly control it to a point but I also understand getting that like dropping feeling and then thinking OMG I'm going to die... All I can say is just start talking to yourself and saying it's fine stop! Deep breaths are the best I think that when I get these attacks at times I find myself almost holding my breath. I can't imagine the pain of losing a baby and nothing can justify the reasons why, I will say that things happen for a reason I have to remind myself of that also because of all the loses but what hasn't killed has made me stronger lol. Don't put so much pressure on yourself to get to the doctor unless you have one that understands it's a fear and not a perscription fix you can totally do it. So many doctors just throw pills at you for a quick fix and it does not work I promise you that. Xanex however works for the ones that you can't talk yourself down from. Anyway take care and hang in there it will get better once your mind and body talk to each other and realize that you are okay and life moves on. P.S. Stress Sucks and is a huge culprit I am the control stress queen...sometimes you have to leave things in gods hands when you can't handle or fix anymore hand it off that also helps me to say okay TAKE IT! haha Smile
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