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Please help
Jan 20, 2006
I donít really know where to start. Well until about 3 years ago I was I pretty happy person, extremely confident and successful in most aspects of my life. I was a serving soldier in the British army enjoying a great social life. My friends from back home, who I would socialise with while on leave began getting into light recreational drug use on weekends in clubs. Stupidly I also allowed myself to begin taking ecstasy and cocaine on a weekend regularly. After about 6 months of recreational drug use I began to experience anxiety symptoms and mild paranoia which at the time I did not understand and just dealt with. In the mean time I deployed with the army to Sierra Leone in West Africa for a 2 month spell. We took anti malarial drugs which heightened the anxiety/paranoia feelings I was already experiencing. I completed the tour and returned to the UK, about 2 weeks after returning I fell ill and ended up alone in my room blacking out with symptoms of malaria. That night I experienced my first panic attack as i thought i was a gonner and was rushed to hospital and treated for the effects of malaria, from with I quickly recovered. Wile recuperating at home with my parents I began to experience 3 or 4 horrendous panic attacks daily for about 1 month. In which time I received some coping tips and CBT from a psychotherapist. The doctor prescribed me with Prozac and I told my parents i was suffering from PTSD brought on through the bout of Malaria. Whilst to myself, my inner belief is that all this was brought on through my use of drugs particularly ecstasy. The fact that I cannot bring myself to talk about this is making the situation worse. After about 3 months off sick with depression I decided to leave the Armed Forces and move home. What followed was a bout of severe depression and a nervous breakdown. 2 Years on I am recently free of taking any medication; however I still experience constant anxiety and paranoia with occasional bouts of depression and suicidal thoughts. I came off Prozac because it was making me feel either manic or depressed and not much in between. After my breakdown I received intense cognitive behavioural therapy however I never expressed my true thoughts to the councillor because I am almost scared to say it because that would mean its true. I am going to try and explain my symptoms so that hopefully someone can empathise or explain them to me. I experience tension in the neck and shoulders and tension headaches. I get pains in my arm and upper body which feels like the onset of flu but the flu does not come. I think about my mortality and I am VERY self aware to the point of feeling dizzy and think allot about dying. When I walk around a feel like Iím going to fall over and my body feels light. I get a very weird taste in my mouth almost metallic so I chew gum allot which I guess could add to tension. I get some lights sometimes in my eyes and a sense of falling. Sometimes I think Iím going crazy because I feel so detached from the reality around me, however I have been fortunately able to keep one foot in reality while my mind is racing at 100000 miles an hour. To conclude Iíd appreciate any help anyone can PLEASE give me.

Thanks

Andrew UK





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