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Discussion Starter #1
I REALLY need the experts on this site to jump in, im trying to save my job as im on sick leave.

Ive failed most SSRIS and Nardil side effects were bad. I am actually thinking on re-trying Paxil (athough 6 ssri failures make me hate my life), however it was the only one that didnt give me extreme insomnia, and i think i should have tried increasing the dose past 20mg before getting off of it. (secretly i know ssris do ****, but what can i do)

My biggest issue is trouble focusing/concentrating! Its that symptom that has lead to depression since I cant do my job if i cant focus. Before that symptom suddenly came on I was happy, doing really well at work, had no issues focusing but anxiety was building and things got overwhelming. Then one day my anxiety suddenly got bad and it came on full force, next day I couldnt focus on a thing. People could talk to me and i couldnt understand what they were saying, i couldnt read or write anymore. You would think I had a brain tumor, I know its also not ADD since it came on when i was 21, but I have been tested, its all anxiety.

Clonazpam is the only thing that when it slows down my mind, i can think clearly again and focus on work, and generally concentrate again. Unless someone can teach me a way to not get addicted to Clonazpam, like my work is willing to accomodate me and have me work just 3 days a week. So if i take clonazpam only on those 3 days, can i stop tolerance?? But im talking for years?

Anyone have trouble concentrating from anxiety NOT ADD and how did you cure it? I tried ritilin and it didnt do much but made anxiety worse. Im thinking of trying straetta, i know i dont have ADD but focus is my biggest symptom so it makes sense to try it, but again theirs tolerance. ADD meds make anxiety worse and my anxiety is already bad so i really dont know where to go from here.

Unless I should try Paxil again, raise the dose, and augment with something else? Again, I need to get my concentration back, but avoid insomnia. I dont need a stimulant, im need a relaxer.

Any experts plz?? I know one guy is the only one who replies to my posts, thank you! You suggested remeron but i have already tried it. Amitriplyne other TCA and Seroquel have been tried, they are helping me sleep but nothing for anxiety/focus.
 

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I should explain how my therapist explained it. When driving to work I get anxiety and fight or flight response kicks in, my brain shuts down (flees/flight) and I cant focus. Its like 24.7 panic attack, although at home im calmer so easier to concentrate, although still hard to focus, like reading a recipe, losing stuff all the time. When it comes to work/performance or anything that puts me under pressure, thats when its a complete brain running away,
 

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amber89,

you tried propranalol or lyrica for anxiety? what TCA's have you tried apart from amitriptyline, how about imipramine ? buproprion for focus?

Practice mindfulness ? if not, I would highly recommend you taking it up whilst on sick leave, it may not feel like its doing anything to start with but with regular practice you really do find true stillness and calm with your breath, I promise ! If you cant commit to that, look up 3 minute breathing spaces, or STOP mindfulness practices. Take regular walks outside and concentrate on your footfall or take in the surroundings and noises.

When back at work, take a walk or some breathing practices before you leave and quit any caffeine first thing.
 

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Howdy. You obviously need to find solutions to supplement medication. You don't want to be on that stuff the rest of your life. Unfortunately I can't give you anything specific that might chill you out. You have to find that. Deep breathing techniques will help short term. If you are having a panic attack, there are some exercises you can do to quickly get over it. Like focusing on all of your senses: pick out 3 things you can see and focus only on that, pick out 3 things you can hear and focus only on that, same with touch, taste, smell, etc.) Again, that's probably more a short-term fix, but gotta start somewhere. Find an activity non-work related that you can do at home (or even better yet, around others) that calms you. I'd suggest yoga, but I suggest that a lot on here and probably annoy the **** out of people each time I do.
 

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Meditation, mindfulness and yoga like Evo mentioned are very helpful but I realise that isn't going to help you right now while your in the eye of the storm.
Have you got any annual leave you can take? It would would be ideal if you could take some time out so you could try and get to grips with this thing.
I often wish people like us could buy an island somewhere or run a hotel in the tropics and get off this treadmill and look after each other.
I wish all the best and hope somehow you can get through this bad time because I'm sure it isn't going to be with you forever.
Best Wishes
 

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Discussion Starter #7
How did your severe anxiety start? Did it happen to start after you stopped an SSRI or some other medication?
No, i was doing well until my father died, not that I even knew him but I wanted to reconnect with him when I found out he passed away from a brain tumor. Then I went into a depression, but i was still doing fine at work. The depression triggered my feelings that I had no one in this world, that I was going to be homeless and end up on the street because i had no support, then since i grew up poor that everyone else at school and work were smarter then me (ive had therapy to realize these thoughts are not true because i was doing well, but they still linger). I started putting a lot of pressure on myself at work, thinking work was the only thing i had in my life and only thing keeping me from ending up homeless, i put all my eggs in that basket, and i guess that's where it became overwhelming and my severe anxiety started, since then ive tried medication after medication and havent been able to get back to my old self. This all started 5 years ago and hasnt gotten better, only worse.
 

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amber89,

you tried propranalol or lyrica for anxiety? what TCA's have you tried apart from amitriptyline, how about imipramine ? buproprion for focus?

Practice mindfulness ? if not, I would highly recommend you taking it up whilst on sick leave, it may not feel like its doing anything to start with but with regular practice you really do find true stillness and calm with your breath, I promise ! If you cant commit to that, look up 3 minute breathing spaces, or STOP mindfulness practices. Take regular walks outside and concentrate on your footfall or take in the surroundings and noises.

When back at work, take a walk or some breathing practices before you leave and quit any caffeine first thing.
I tried Noratryptline, did nothing. Can Lyrica be used long term or is it addicting like a benzo? If i could use my clonazapem every other day, and lyrica in between, i wonder if that could work, but im so scared to be addicted.

I did start to practice mindfulness, im glad you brought that up. But my problem has become i really attach to people's opinions and take them as facts. I read somewhere on here that people said CBT is snake oil, i swear as soon as i read that, I couldnt control my negative thoughts anymore like i had learned in CBT. All it takes is one person to say it wont work and my mind will make sure of it. Ive tried mindfulness at work, listening to sounds, focusing on my breath or body, but it doesnt make concentrating on my work any easier. Maybe i need to practice it more, right now is such a really bad time. I just bought a course of mindfulness, the teacher is amazing, but i alreaady missed two classes because i didnt want to leave home and simply didnt think it was strong enough to help me get back to work. I wish meds would help because i really need them. I know I could take clonazpam and be able to work just fine, but last time i tried that i was upping my dose weekly.
 

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I should explain something weird. So in the midst of all these anxiety taking over my life and be scared to lose my job and end up homeless, I met a guy and we got married knowing each other for like 4 months, obviously not a good idea, but my anxiety WENT AWAY, like 100%. Things at work were great, infact i didnt care about work anymore, thats the freaking thing that made me better, my relationship was more important to me then work so the anxiety at work went away. Also, this person had a wealthy family so for the first time in my life i felt i had stability, family and money. I knew if I lost my job Id be taken care of, it really was a false illusion since the relationship only lasted a year, after that the anxiety all came back. But its crazzy that it took absolutely no medication and my anxiety all went away. I know I can go on government disability so i wouldnt end up on the street, but i guess my mind wont accept that when i have a good job and just wish i could work it.

Then again, I havent had stability all my life and the anxiety only started about a little while ago. It could also have been that i was just distracted and happy when i was in a relationship, maybe meds dont work for me because i dont need them?
 

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I REALLY need the experts on this site to jump in, im trying to save my job as im on sick leave.

Ive failed most SSRIS and Nardil side effects were bad. I am actually thinking on re-trying Paxil (athough 6 ssri failures make me hate my life), however it was the only one that didnt give me extreme insomnia, and i think i should have tried increasing the dose past 20mg before getting off of it. (secretly i know ssris do ****, but what can i do)

My biggest issue is trouble focusing/concentrating! Its that symptom that has lead to depression since I cant do my job if i cant focus. Before that symptom suddenly came on I was happy, doing really well at work, had no issues focusing but anxiety was building and things got overwhelming. Then one day my anxiety suddenly got bad and it came on full force, next day I couldnt focus on a thing. People could talk to me and i couldnt understand what they were saying, i couldnt read or write anymore. You would think I had a brain tumor, I know its also not ADD since it came on when i was 21, but I have been tested, its all anxiety.

Clonazpam is the only thing that when it slows down my mind, i can think clearly again and focus on work, and generally concentrate again. Unless someone can teach me a way to not get addicted to Clonazpam, like my work is willing to accomodate me and have me work just 3 days a week. So if i take clonazpam only on those 3 days, can i stop tolerance?? But im talking for years?

Anyone have trouble concentrating from anxiety NOT ADD and how did you cure it? I tried ritilin and it didnt do much but made anxiety worse. Im thinking of trying straetta, i know i dont have ADD but focus is my biggest symptom so it makes sense to try it, but again theirs tolerance. ADD meds make anxiety worse and my anxiety is already bad so i really dont know where to go from here.

Unless I should try Paxil again, raise the dose, and augment with something else? Again, I need to get my concentration back, but avoid insomnia. I dont need a stimulant, im need a relaxer.

Any experts plz?? I know one guy is the only one who replies to my posts, thank you! You suggested remeron but i have already tried it. Amitriplyne other TCA and Seroquel have been tried, they are helping me sleep but nothing for anxiety/focus.
Hi Amber,

I've been in a similar situation like you before. Acute stress situations or a prolonged stressful periods can overwhelm us, and in such situations we often respond in the worst possible way, by exhausting ourselves through strain and worry even more. Take a deep breath and give yourself a hug (literally), your situation is not as terrible as your sensitized body wants you to believe. Regardless of the original causes of your stress, whether your anxiety, depression or something else, what you are experiencing right now is an extreme emotional and mental fatigue manifested as an exaggerated response of your sensitized nervous system. Maybe the source of your stress is still present, maybe your body does not know how to deal well with stress since it learned to rely heavily on medication, or maybe your body simply didn't have enough time to recover from the last stressful situation. No matter what kind of situation you are in right now, know that there is no critical point beyond which recovery is impossible. Our bodies are more resilient than you might think. Anywhere and at any time we can recover, perhaps not immediately, but in surprisingly short time. "Trouble is a tunnel through which we pass and not a brick wall against which we must break our head". There are two things that you can do:
1. Help your body return to homeostasis as quickly as possible
2. Start dealing with root causes of your anxiety and depression in a systematic manner

It's great that you are taking some days off. Use these days to give your body time to recover. This is what you should do:
1. Make sure you get enough sleep in the next couple of days, even if you need to temporarily take sleeping pills. Not having enough sleep is a major problem. Forget about anything else if your body is not properly rested.
2. Listen to favorite music, watch a good movie, get a massage, do something that you consider relaxing. Or even better, do something that will make you laugh and/or cry. Crying and laughing are the best anti-stress mechanisms that we have. Start with this:
, and then many more here: https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=whackhead+simpson :)
3. Participate in some sort of sport or physical activity. Take a long walk, run a few miles, whatever you feel more comfortable with. Besides helping you sleep better, physical activity will cause your body to release feel-good neurotransmitters such as dopamine and serotonin and also get rid of stress hormones such as cortisol.
4. Eat regularly and eat healthy. Having a good meal is one of only few known ways to get your body to release oxytocin. Additionally, use vitamin supplements, but use only top quality vitamins specifically designed for women. Make sure they include magnesium (magnesium citrate is absorbed the fastest), B & D vitamines, Omega-3s and Omega-6s. You can use this site to find some good options: https://labdoor.com/rankings/multivitamins
5. Spend some quality time with your family and friends. Talk to your family and friends about what's troubling you. You will be surprised how therapeutic a good conversation can be. The best medicine is the warmth and comfort we gain from our loving relationships which can melt any sort of psychic pain. The best antidepressant chemistries will be those that recruit the power of our social-affective systems such as oxitocyn. This is probably why you didn't have to use medication while you were in a relationship. And this is why we cannot isolate ourselves from people, ever. Medication is working in a very similar way, by regulating the production of hormones and neurotransmitters in your body. But there are ways to manage our hormones in a more natural way.
6. Give yourself some challenge, even if a very simple one. Learn something new, visit a new restaurant, enroll in a dancing class. The feeling of learning something new and interesting, or anything that can give us a feeling of success, solving a challenging sudoku for example, will cause a release of an enormous amount of positive hormones such as dopamine.

As someone already mentioned, forget about medication as a long-term solution for your anxiety, medication will not cure you. With only few exceptions such as extreme cases of depression, schizophrenia and some other serious psychiatric disorders, medication is meant to be used only short-term to supplement psychotherapy and help your body return to you natural, healthy state more quickly. This is what wikipedia says about SSRIs and benzos:
->"SSRIs are recommended by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) for the treatment of generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) that has failed to respond to conservative measures such as education and self-help activities."
->"Psychological therapies such as cognitive behavioural therapy are recommended as a first-line therapy for panic disorder; benzodiazepine use has been found to interfere with therapeutic gains from these therapies."
If your current physician is only giving you medication, maybe you should think about finding a new therapist. You should definitely start looking for a solution that will help you get rid off medication in the next period. However, do this only under the supervision of your therapist, never on your own!

The solution for anxiety and depression is 75% about changing your lifestyle, 20% about psychotherapy such as CBT, and maybe 5% about medication. You can probably never get rid of anxiety 100%, because we can develop anxiety, depression and other disorders at any point in life. A trigger can be a traumatic situation or a chronic stress. However, we can learn to successfully manage anxiety, but it requires a lot of effort and discipline. Forget about quick fixes and promises of easy solutions. It takes a lifetime to master this stuff and involves:
- Understanding of the problem - which means reading a lot of books on this subject and more
- Phenomenological/scientific approach - objective instead of subjective approach, or a situation in which you are both a scientist and a lab rat at the same time, not just a lab rat with a problem
- Acceptance and compassion - learning how to be gentle and patient towards yourself on this journey
- Discipline - changing unhealthy with healthy habits - sleeping, eating, sport, basically setting a foundation for a recovery
- Controlled exposure to things that trigger your anxiety - with every new situation there is an opportunity to heal past bad emotional memories and replace them with the good ones - to learn more about this google Memory Reconsolidation and Coherence Therapy
- Building a character - becoming a stronger and a better person in general, as Marcus Aurelius nicely summarizes: "Put a shining face of simplicity and self-respect and indifference to everything outside of realms of virtue and vice. Love mankind, walk in god's ways!"

I would suggest to start with learning as much as possible about different aspects of anxiety, including neurological, hormonal, emotional, behavioral and cognitive aspects. Good book to get you started is "Hope and Help for Your Nerves" by Claire Weekes. I quoted a lot of stuff from her book in this post.

Good luck!
 

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Sounds like excessive noradrenaline/norepinephrine signaling... This can of course depend on alot of things...

And 5years you said you had problems...
Obviusly im starting to think about my favourite subject... The HPA-Axis:grin2: .. (i hate i!) but a dysregulation takes some time to fix

So you need to lower noradrenaline.... Normaly serotnin works for that, but you mentioned that its making you more "on the edge".

You mentioned shaky hands and such... The betablocker propranolol is good for that,

About Clonazepam it is interesting because some studies show that it is effective for ADD or such, because of its lowering effect of noradrenaline...

Now you being afraid of getting addicted... Well there is different terms, describing the difference from "addiction" and "dependence"... (of course if you have some previus problem with substance abuse or such it might not be a good idea to use it regulary)

But sure you could take clonazepam, but after using it for some over 6 weeks, you might have developed "dependence"... (thats not the same as addiction)...

To quoute Stahl to get some legit comment on it.
Stahl's prescribers guide 5th ed:
• Benzodiazepine-dependent anxiety patients
and insulin-dependent diabetics are not
addicted to their medications. When
benzodiazepine-dependent patients stop
their medication, disease symptoms can
reemerge, disease symptoms can worsen
(rebound), and/or withdrawal symptoms
can emerge.

I would probably try to use the betablocker propranolol first, and see if that helps... but then use clonazepam...
It is as you say your work/livelyhood that is at stake...

Abuse: Self-administration of any drug in a culturally disapproved manner that causes adverse
consequences.
Addiction: A behavioral pattern of drug abuse characterized by overwhelming involvement with the
use of a drug (compulsive use), the securing of its supply, and a high tendency to relapse
after discontinuation.

Dependence: The physiological state of adaptation produced by repeated administration of certain
drugs such as alcohol, heroin, and benzodiazepines when they are abruptly discontinued,
and are associated with physical drug withdrawal distinct from the motivational changes
of acute withdrawal and protracted abstinence, which is part of addiction.
 
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