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Posts Tagged ‘overcoming’

At times, the anxiety was excruciating. It was a knot in my chest that grew along with the sense of impending doom as the anxiety deepened. Sometimes it came with depression. Most of the time it showed up all on its own. Often, it was connected to an upcoming event: a trip, a family or friend’s visit, going to church or other places with lots of people or anything else that makes this introvert uncomfortable.

There used to be a time that I would accept anything strange or new easily enough even though it might be a bit uncomfortable. Not so anymore. Over the last year or so, I was feeling a low level anxiety constantly, except for the times it became overwhelming. I was afraid to take the clonazapam (Klonapin) that my psychiatrist prescribed because I would have to be taking it everyday and I didn’t want to get addicted. I finally got tired of suffering and told my psychiatrist (Pdoc) what was happening. He had a solution—another medication (i mentioned this in last month’s post), which I was not thrilled about but I said I would try it. I was to take it three times a day (gradually working up to that amount.) Three times a day felt like overkill so I backed off to two times a day, at breakfast and before bed and it was enough. I started to feel a slight difference on the third day. It took about two weeks to fully kick in and it has been a lifesaver.

The constant low-level anxiety is gone. I sometimes feel a very mild anxiety over some upcoming event but it is tolerable. My Pdoc said I could take the clonazapam if I feel the anxiety is too uncomfortable but I am afraid to take them together. I ran my drug list for interactions on Drugs.com and it advised against taking the two together. It hasn’t been necessary anyway. If it became overwhelming, perhaps I would try it.

I’m a bit overly cautious about mixing meds because I almost OD-ed on pain meds due to a MD’s recommendations to take different pain meds together, ones that he prescribed for me along with a pain med a surgeon had prescribed for a week. I called the MD to get his advice about dropping his meds temporarily while I took the meds the surgeon prescribed. The MD said “no, don’t stop. Take them all together”. After a couple of days when the full effect of all those meds kicked in, I started to pass out. I fought it by keeping moving back and forth while hanging onto a door for dear life. I knew if I sat down, I’d pass out and I thought I was going to die if that happened. I had to keep moving and breathing. I vowed that would never happen again so now I research all my meds and the interactions.   Occasionally I also ask the pharmacist if he’s run a check when I get a new med.

The important thing right now is that I no longer suffer with anxiety. The new med is not meant to use long term so I am wondering when would be a good time to wean off. Probably when I don’t have any events coming up for several months. Perhaps the cycle of constant anxiety has been broken so I’d be able to deal with the occasional bout of it again while just use clonazapam if it becomes a bit overwhelming as I used to do.  I’ll talk with my Pdoc about this in a couple of weeks when I see him again.

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