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Generalised Anxiety Disorder

(106 Posts)
Stripedmum Tue 16-Jul-13 11:16:04

I'm struggling. All day every day worry, worry, worry, worry. Or feeling weird and on edge.

Will this ever resolve? Please give me some hope.

perplexedpirate Tue 16-Jul-13 22:18:26

I do either one or two 'days' of c25k, so either an hour or half an hour, three times a week. I've hurt my leg a bit, so this week I've done 2 5k+ walks and a 3.5k run.
It started to lift my mood within about a week, it was having a plan and a goal (did Race for Life on Sunday smile) that helped almost as much as the physical activity I think.
Booking my next 5k for September, totally got the bug!

Stripedmum Tue 16-Jul-13 22:26:23

I tend to do a run (generally 5k ish but more if I push myself) then feel better, and then not bother. Or feel so fed up that I don't do it and then feel shit. I really, really need more consistency.

Well done perplexed. More power to you. You are helping yourself.

perplexedpirate Tue 16-Jul-13 22:32:00

Thanks Striped. I must admit I do still get bad days, but the good now out weigh them, and that's the important thing.
DH and DS are wonderful and very supportive, which helps. smile

perplexedpirate Tue 16-Jul-13 22:36:09

Btw, I'm convinced mine started as PND. If you look at some posts I did a few years ago I'm saying things like 'I don't have depression', 'i've never had PND', 'I don't have OCD', etc etc.
Then when I finally realised that spending all day every day worrying and panicking over every little thing was not the way to live, I went to the GP, got my diagnosis and treatment, and it all fell into place.

sweetkitty Tue 16-Jul-13 22:42:28

Hi I'm on Citalopram 20mg for anxiety it's helping a little.

I hate it, it rules my life sometimes, I can't take the DC to the beach as I'm scared of driving anywhere new or on a motorway in case we crash and die. I'm terrified of anything happening to DP or the DC or myself really. I have insomnia as I cannot sleep for worrying.

Bloody hate anxiety hmm

LEMisdisappointed Tue 16-Jul-13 22:48:06

Hi striped - i am sorry that you are going through this, i understand totally as my anxiety does this to me. I was worse in the morning because that is when the cortisol peaks, so i would wake up and be on defcon 9 and not even know why! I am on ADs (citalopram) and they work for me. I am also having counselling.

I think that you should consider ADs as they are not a miracle cure for anxiety actually but they stop that horrid fight or flight feeling that i get for absolutely no reason. That frees my mind up to deal with the other stuff that are the root of the problem. Of course it is up to you, but i think you are making things harder for yourself - if you were diabetic you wouldn't try to manage without insulin. If you get a headache do you take paracetemol? It is just the same with anxiety and depression, whatever the reason you get them, they throw all of your neurotransmitters off kilter - so even if you don't have a labelable condition like bipolar or OCD your hormones can be all over the place. Hormones does not just mean all things gynaecological - insulin is a hormone. Many ADs work on seratonin, another hormone that works in the brain and is involved in many processes. It often gets thrown out of balance during pregnancy and post-natally. Sometimes our bodies need help to put this right. It doesn't have to be forever and ADs do not change your personality. I am more "me" on citalopram than i am off of it. I do not however think i will be on it forever. If you try and look at your illness as just that, taking logical steps to overcome it will seem to make sense.

For instance, if you injure your back you would take painkillers and anti-inflammatory drugs, once you are able you would then undertake physiotherapy/exercise to strengthen it again.

Exercise is fanstastic for anxiety - it helps to stimulate neurotransmitters, running, swimming or cycling. I find running helps me, but it buggers my hip so i cycle. I find that wthout the ADs, if i cycle i have a panic attack, fine with them.

I am not saying you should have ADs, but just putting the other side across. Good luck, i know how damaging anxiety could be - i had health anxiety at one point and was almost suicidal because i was scared of dying - go figure!

Purple2012 Tue 16-Jul-13 23:00:12

I have GAD. I was diagnosed a couple of years ago. I went to my GP absolutely exhausted and just burst into tears as soon as he asked what was wrong. I don't worry about myself but I worry about people I love. I have ridiculous worries as well as the usual ones. I think in 'what ifs'. So what if my husband has a car crash, or ridiculous ones like what if that crane falls on him. It had a huge effect on me as I hardly slept. I just couldn't stop my mind going over stuff. So even when the 'danger' had passed I still worry about it. I would also wake my husband up if I couldn't hear him breathing.

I was initially signed off work for a while and given sleeping tablets which really helped but my GP doesn't repeat prescribe.

I then had CBT. It didn't work for me. I am now on amytryptelene. In higher doses it is an anti depressant but the dose im on it helps me relax and sleep better. If I sleep better I can exercise which helps. I do still have the worries but when you're not as tired its not so overwhelming and easier to deal with.

My GP won't prescribe medication specifically for anxiety as when you stop the problem is still there. He prefers to find a way to deal with it.

I have accepted that I will always have this, but I just have to find a way to deal with it.

We are driving a long way to see family in a few weeks and I have been worrying about it for ages. We have been invited to stay with family but because I get physical symptoms we are staying in a hotel as I may be up half the night! . I get bad back, neck,stomach and head pain when it's really bad. The back and neck pain is because I am so tense when its bad. So I may need to try and relax for a long time in the bath so don't want to feel unable to at a relatives house.

Juat realised that was very long! Sorry!

Purlesque Wed 17-Jul-13 07:51:04

Yes you can pm me.
I tried ad's but aren't for me. My doctor was no help just keen to push more drugs.

dirtyface Wed 17-Jul-13 07:57:04

i'm like this OP. i have been like it for years on and off

i know that on edge feeling, its like you feel like something bads going to happen sad

Purlesque Wed 17-Jul-13 07:58:31

Strangely excersise doesn't do much for me (i do walking). I feel better after relaxing, hypnotherapy is good for that and getting involved in a hobby/project. Doesn't leave much head room for worries.
If one thing has helped me more than anything it is my hobby and starting big projects.

Purple2012 Wed 17-Jul-13 09:17:00

The exercise helps for me because I sleep better so if im not so tired the worry doesn't seem insurmountable. Also while I exercise I concentrate on that so I worry less that way.

I think different things work for different people. For some CBT probably worked. It just didn't for me.

Funnyfishface Wed 17-Jul-13 09:30:59

I have pm you

peachypips Wed 17-Jul-13 21:10:42

I find that I do most definitely forget that I have ever been well when I am feeling bad. The best thing to do is mark on your calendar how you are feeling out of ten or keep a short diary about how your day has been so you can look back and see that you did, in fact, feel fine a few days ago!
Mine started with PND but has stuck. I have excepted after my last relapse that I will be on meds forever as I am poorly and not myself when off them. I can't function when I'm ill!

peachypips Wed 17-Jul-13 21:13:32

Oh, and if ur DS is whingy when he has growth spurts that def makes anxiety worse. When my two aren't right it makes my anxiety worse. Also, ur DS is still very young.

peachypips Wed 17-Jul-13 21:14:45

Whoops just realised you have two!

Stripedmum Thu 18-Jul-13 13:49:59

Well...crisis team have had to come out as 'it' reached crisis point. Not being able to explain exactly how I felt which was kicking off utter panic. They have reassured me that I'm not going mad but I'm finding it hard to believe them. I feel that strange that I've convinced myself there's no hope or way back for me.

I'm getting referred for CBT as I'm bfing and have a huge fear of the meds.

Funnyfishface Thu 18-Jul-13 15:17:08

Hey stripedmum how are you doing now.?

The cbt helped me. I followed the fear fighter programme on nhs. The therapist I saw was very young and I WRONGLY pre-judged her. I took one look at her and thought she wouldn't be able to help. But she did.

I also keep a diary now. I write how I feel, how I slept, what I have done. It dies help looking back through it. To see how far I have come.

At my Rock bottom last Oct I felt so helpless. I was very emotional and really couldn't see a way out. That was my low point. And I haven't and will not go back to that point.

I have two sons 23 and 18. I am sahm.

You WILL get through this. It is hard to explain to someone exactly what you are going through and unless they have experienced it they won't get it. I understand. Big hugs and lots of love to you

peachypips Thu 18-Jul-13 16:57:53

You poor thing. They were regular visitors here a few years back! I don't want to push it but I really think you should give the drugs a try. Sertraline would be a good one as it is fine when feeding and helps specifically with anxiety.
I am on it and it is fine xx

Stripedmum Thu 18-Jul-13 17:35:56

Hi all. Thanks so much. I'm feeling marginally better and relaxed but just really strange. I know that sounds vague but can anyone relate? Just scared to be alive really. That sounds bonkers doesn't it?

Thank you Funnyfish. I really hope it helps. In pretty desperate now. I want to feel like normal again but it's been that long now I don't feel I know what normal is. I feel very lost and confused and very concerned that this is 'me' now.

Thank you Peachy. I'm glad to know it's not just me calling them out. I am so averse to ADs because I'm already so out of sorts I feel they're going to make me feel even less 'normal'. I also read lots of bad stuff about suicide and ADs and although I know it's VERY rare I think it'd kick my anxiety up to a higher level and make me worse not better if that makes sense? I wish I could feel I could take them but I just hate 'unknowns' and I feel ADs would be another change at a difficult time.

stripedmum, I can relate immensely to your posts. It is very distressing to feel that your thoughts are ruling your life and personality when at some level you know that they are not 'true'. I really thought that I was going properly mad. It was horrible. It was all triggered for me by stress at work. I just lost all perspective.

I too chose not to take ADs (was afraid). I found CBT very helpful for GAD. You have to work at it, like homework or studying, and so it suited me very well as I went away with a task to do and could focus on that. I had 12 weeks of sessions. During the process I got worse - it was exhausting and difficult - but the improvement over the past year since I ended treatment has been excellent. Also have recently been looking into mindfulness which is helpful too.

Hope that helps a bit. I resisted getting help for a long time (at a lower level of anxiety) and wish I hadn't.

purplejelly Thu 18-Jul-13 21:11:03

I also struggle with anxiety, can I join in? I have tinnitus which I think is linked to the anxiety and I don't want to take any medication as they all have tinnitus as a side effect and I don't want it to get worse. The trouble is, my anxiety is getting worse even if the tinnitus isn't and I feel trapped! Today I've had the "fight or flight" feeling all day long. It's exhausting. I've even had an upset stomach because of it.

I did some CBT last year which did help, maybe time to dig out the notes. I also find mindfulness helpful. It's interesting about exercise. I want to start C25K as well but haven't fancied it now it's so hot.

I just feel really fed up of putting on a brave face for my family and pretending everything is okay when it's not. I don't want my children to know what's going on and my husband, although lovely, had a habit of burying his head in the sand when something difficult is happening.

Stripedmum Thu 18-Jul-13 21:38:53

Purple much love to you. Know the feeling. I've not been right for two and a half years and it's been like being trapped in a nightmare I'm not waking up from.

SinisterSal Thu 18-Jul-13 21:53:11

Gosh you sound just like I was this time last year. Scared to be alive was it exactly, that chimes so true with me. I was afraid of the leaves falling from the trees. A sunbeam/rain cloud/birdcall would send me into spirals. Everything. But I am proof you can go back to your old self. I'm grand now! And you will be too, this will not last forever.
My therapist at the time told me she found it very common in mothers of young children. She mentioned hormones but she concentrated on the fact that mums of tiny ones have to be extra vigilant, extra tuned in, extra alert to threats in whatever form. This healthy response can get out of control. For me also it started with the birth of my first child.
You are not going mad.

Funnyfishface Fri 19-Jul-13 09:23:24

Hi.

It's ok not to take ads. They don't fix the anxiety they just make you feel less het up so that you can focus on treatment to get better.

Anything that focuses on relaxing, breathing etc will help. Mindfulness is brilliant.

Exercise is supposed to really help but for me one if my triggers is getting too hot. So I have avoided it unfortunately.

I completely understand that feeling of will I ever feel normal. I was so incredibly emotional about it.

Have you read any books. Claire weeks has written some excellent material. I really do think if you can learn as much as possible about the anxiety, what happens to your body etc it helps you understand that all the symptoms are normal and it's just our body responding to what it thinks is danger.

You will get better. You are not going mad.

Stripedmum Fri 19-Jul-13 09:34:57

Thank you thank you thank you. I'm in such a weird and strange place. I just pray it's a very odd time that I can one day look back on.

I feel like I was screaming for help but no one listened. Now I feel I've gone past a point and there's no way back.

Thank you so much for helping make me feel a bit reassured. I honestly appreciate it so much.

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