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Ok so I've had social anxiety and depression for about 9 years now. Lately it is getting so much worse, as I am working my first full time job (in a care home) and am constantly around people. I have been there 4 months and it is getting worse, not better. Sometimes I almost burst into tears on the job, cos it's so stressful, and I feel so incompetent, and the job can just get depressing. My anxiety and depression aren't just worse at work though, in general I feel so much more self concious, like I used to be relatively ok leaving the house, now I put it off if I can help it. I feel like everyone thinks I'm ugly and weird. I used to meet people when I was drunk then be ok to meet them for a date the week after if they asked, with the help of a tad bit of dutch courage. Now however, I just ignore people's texts as I can't be bothered to meet anyone, plus am way too scared. Before I used to have a degree of confidence underneath my anxiety, now it feels like it's gone. I have lost interest in pretty much everything apart from animated films.

So yeah. I have tried several medications. First, Citalopram, which helped a bit with depression but did nothing for anxiety. I stopped taking it after a couple of months as depression came creeping back. Then I tried Sertraline, which did pretty much the same thing (as in, nothing). Then I tried.. Remeron? Something like that. It was a circular tablet that sent me straight to sleep. Due to the fact I had a job to go to, I quit after one day cos I can't exactly work whilst asleep. After that I tried Venlafaxine, which was horrific. It took my emotions away and again, did eff all for anxiety and depression. I took it for 2 months I believe, and I came off it suddenly cos I was only on a relatively low dose, and the withdrawal was hell.

I have also tried therapy twice.. Only thing they offer here for free is a 16 week course of CBT. It didn't help, I don't see how talking about things will get rid of problems I've had for almost 9 years. Anxiety isn't rational, I can't talk myself out of negative thinking patterns when I am panicking! I also tried group therapy a week or two ago, and left the group at the end in tears, because I just felt so horrible and everyone else was way more talkative than me, I almost doubted they had anxiety.

So yeah. After my lack of success with meds I thought I would go without, but clearly it's not working. I need help and bad. So I went back to the doctor today.. I have already transferred doctors once because my usual doctor said I need to get over anxiety without meds, and he didn't even give me any suggestions. I now regularly see a doctor who doesn't seem to want to put me on anything that works. She was away today, so I saw a different doctor. She said I have tried ALL possible medications for the treatment of anxiety and depression. She says these drugs are the best for anxiety, and nothing else works. I said to her, "Aren't there a lot more medications out there?" And she said my only option was to try something I have already tried. She wanted me to go back on Citalopram. I'm thinking what the hell, I have already ****ing tried it, it did **** all for me! So she put me on Paroxetine, and she said it's not likely to help as all these drugs do the same thing.. I'm guessing she means SSRIs. They don't seem to do **** all for me. I just had a cry in the shower when I got home, because I honestly feel ****ing hopeless. I feel like all I can do now is self medication with alcohol. I can't keep suffering like this, I can't keep being pretty much a mute at work.

I have dreams to act on stage and maybe be a teacher, but it's all turning to ****. There's no hope for me, clearly.
 

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….so I saw a different doctor. She said I have tried ALL possible medications for the treatment of anxiety and depression. She says these drugs are the best for anxiety, and nothing else works.
Given that you're in the UK, you may have literally tried everything available under the NHS unfortunately. I assume you can't afford a private doctor?

In the UK benzos are out of the question. A long-term benzo script is about as likely as being knighted by the Queen. I've heard getting MAOIs (Nardil & Parnate) also doesn't happen under the NHS either. You're a royally screwed royal subject because benzos & an MAOI are your best bets here and they're what you'd be getting if you were over here in the US.
 

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Heyo, I've been on several medications in the past as well and I've quit them all due to the zombie effect. Medication is like a walking stick in terms of remedial progression. It's by no means a cure, and it is 70 percent more effective when you are attributing your personal lifestyle. How do you target anxiety and depression? The same way we try to lose body fat. Through generalized tactics. Cardio will burn fat amongst your whole body, as improving your health and lifestyle will resolve mental illness. Think about it, it took you 9 years of worrying to become the condition that you are now. And of those 9 years I can only imagine the amount of time that has been spent unproductive in hiding. It's much faster to maintain a mental balance than it is to fall into an imbalance, so there is hope.

If your job wont let you redefine your routines, I would suggest doing it part time if possible. Redefining your routines will be strenuous at first also. Time is always a factor and I've found that confidence comes through preparation. Whenever I have something to do, I start early. If I'm going out I'll make sure I clean up, and dress well and comfortably so that I have no regrets when I leave the house. Bring your comfort zone with you outside. Set goals for yourself. I wake up every morning and make a coffee at the exact same time. Psychologically your brain will associate goal making with achievement, even if these goals are necessities, you tell yourself otherwise, and you'll feel better. Exercise is god tier when it comes to anxiety and self esteem. When you have heavy worries where you'd naturally pop a stim pill, do this instead: Grab a pencil and paper then draw a quick table. Title it your current worry, and make two columns. 1. Things I can do about it. 2. Things I have no control over. Brainstorm and write down everything you can think of for each. But only spend 2 minutes on it. Again you are extracting and limiting your worries with a physical process. It's important to do this when pencil and paper. Fold that sh* up and put it in your pocket and distract yourself. If the worry is insanely provoking you can open that paper and read it. - At first I thought this method was ridiculous, but I forced myself to do it and I found it really helped in addition to exercise and good sleep. Sleep is important. You'll eventually be tired as hell and pass out at 9 sometimes. But you'll feel like a goddess in the morning, extra early letting you chill out and not stress over work or whatever you have that day, because you have tasks to do, to occupy your mind. Preparation and endurance. My social anxiety is almost non existent now and even when I do feel waves of it coming, I can easily break through it. If you have any questions feel free to ask.

Best of luck ~
 

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I've heard getting MAOIs (Nardil & Parnate) also doesn't happen under the NHS either.
I have Nardil on the NHS so it does happen, but I had to directly request it, and my GP is old enough to remember prescribing when it was "in"...

OP, if you can't get nardil from your current GP try and change to an older one.
 

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Hey,

All those drugs sound like antidepressants? Have you ever been prescribed any Benzos or something more specific to SA? Now maybe your doctor is trying to help you overcome depression to help with social anxiety or maybe they think its the root cause. Now I don't think I have ever really had depression but I have certainly been in and around that feeling without it ever been that low.

Now it was only about a year ago, I was afraid to leave the house seriously, afraid of stuff like supermarkets, hairdressers, takeaways, even just shops. I'd be paranoid walking down the street, thinking people were watching from their cars, judging me etc.

The fact is unless your like 500lbs or have 2 prosthetic legs or something, no one actually gives a flying ****. Their just getting on with their own **** and own business. Now, I think I have seen what you look like, and I think your attractive so if people are looking or staring, then that's the reason.

Now you said you meet people when you were drunk. I wouldn't recommend using booze regularly. I would really try to get some kind of Benzo, such as Diazapam, Xanax or clonazepam. Even if you only use them 3 times a week, they will help you feel relaxed and more open to talking. Now the problem with Benzos is they make me anyway, feel pretty dim, relaxed sure, but very zombie like. So I much prefer Phenibut.

Sorry to keep banging on about Phenibut :b, but seriously this **** is by far the best thing I have ever taken. I started at 1g and worked my way until I finally started to feel something at 2.5g to 3g. Now I figured out 3.6 was pretty damn awesome. I had a dinner at somebody's house on the weekend, with people I don't know and I have to say I was actually really worried about it. So in the morning I took 3.6g, but then upped to 4.5g an hour later just to make sure I felt the affects. And Holy ****ing ****, that's the words I would use. Social anxiety 100% gone, depression and negative thoughts 100% gone. Talking, chilling, making lots of conversation. And not tiny bit of anxiety walking in there either. Made myself at home straight away. And certainly no awkwardness whatsoever.

In terms of negative side affects from 4.5g, barely nothing for me, slight nausea for 5 minutes which was helped straight away with some ginger tea.

Phenibut is certainly not a consistent solution, due to the tolerance. but it can certainly help you do overcome or help you a couple of days a week, and therefore will give you the belief it can be done again without taking anything.

Now if you want some SA meds like Benzos or whatever, then just say to the doctor to try you on a short term program, like 3 months worth or something so about 15 pills. Then it's up to them if they want to take you off them or keep you on when your done. Try to push your doctor a little, mine said no at first, then I pushed a little but and she gave in quickly. :)

Now if you want to renew your interest in something else, then I recommend watching Breaking Bad - it's absolutely brilliant :b addicting though ;)

Remember one step at a time. You can achieve what you wanna do. But first you gotta get past these crappy obstacles first, they are affecting your view on things.
 

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I have Nardil on the NHS so it does happen, but I had to directly request it, and my GP is old enough to remember prescribing when it was "in"...

OP, if you can't get nardil from your current GP try and change to an older one.
Problem with that is you're going to have to find a doctor who's truly prehistoric to remember a time when MAOIs were "in." A doctor so old that you'll be on the edge of your seat waiting for them to retire or die such that you're once again left without a doctor to prescribe you an MAOI. It's probably the best you can do and it will be good while it lasts, but it won't last forever give how very old they'll have to be. MAOIs haven't been in since Prozac was introduced in 1988 -- and that was 26 years ago.

I'm also surprised you got an MAOI out of a GP UltraMagnus. Good job with that. You did something I was unable to do. My GP with 22 years of experience and a special passion for treating mood disorders (read: he simply loves psych meds) was totally unwilling to give me an MAOI. He feared a worse case scenario in which Parnate would kill me. A whole lot of over-blown hysterical hype that is. I monitor my BP closely and at most sharp cheddar might raise my BP by 10 points, hardly a hypertensive crisis. I haven't had to change my diet at all. My former pdoc who'd be 69 if not for being dead (one of the old-timers of which you speak) dissuaded me from ever trying MAOIs by making a huge deal out of the MAOI diet, even though I've found the diet exceedingly easy to follow since it requires absolutely no changes at all. Being old & a pdoc he should have known better, but he thought the dietary restrictions were just too much. Total nonsense. My current pdoc with 28 years in practice (age 58 ) is old enough to just recall a pre-SSRI time at the start of his career. Yet he has to look up dosing for MAOIs in a book and he does nothing to hide his ignorance regarding MAOIs. I get the impression that MAOI ignorance isn't limited just to the young and even effects quite a few experienced pdocs.
 

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" Citalopram, which helped a bit with depression but did nothing for anxiety "

You should go back on it then

Anxiety from Social Phobia or Avoident Personality is not going to be helped my antidepressants....at least not in a straight forward way.
The lifting of depression that usually accompany anxiety disorders can benefit from AD's though

Social phobia is a thought disorder imo
Benzos can help short term but the underlying issue is destructive thought patterns
 

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Something I've just remembered that should help your case greatly, the NICE guidelines for dealing with social anxiety: http://publications.nice.org.uk/social-anxiety-disorder-recognition-assessment-and-treatment-cg159/recommendations#interventions-for-adults-with-social-anxiety-disorder-2

For adults whose symptoms have not responded to an alternative SSRI or an SNRI, offer a monoamine oxidase inhibitor (phenelzine[2] or moclobemide).
An MAOI is literally supposed to be the third drug they try, obviously a lot of GPs aren't following these guidelines. If they refuse to give you an MAOI after showing them that I imagine it would be grounds for a complaint.
 
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