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Hi - I've been debating posting here for about a week but after this morning, I just have to! I am not sure what to do or think.

It usually starts in the morning after I wake up but sometimes in the evening. My chest will start to feel uncomfortable and sometimes hurt (sometimes it's above my heart, sometimes it's to the right or left of it, sometimes below it, sometimes it feels like it's my back). Sometimes, I'll be really short of breath or my heart will flutter/skip a beat (it's been doing that all my life). Then my left arm and shoulder will start to hurt in various places. This will go on anywhere from ten minutes to a few hours and it usually makes me freak out a little. It goes away, usually when I get busy with something, but not always. But then I'm left with other stuff...my stomach will get real gassy, have heartburn, a headache my BP will go up, my face gets flushed, my throat's really dry, parts of my face and neck will hurt or go numb, my eye will twitch and I'll start noticing that my regular every-day problems seem 10x worse (like the knee I hurt this summer, a vericose vein I have in my leg, PMS cramps, etc).

I have been under an unbelievable amount of stress lately and I've become super jumpy and worrysome (like I'll drive down the road in constant fear a dog's going to jump out in front of me). I did have some of these symptoms in the spring for a couple of months, but my doc checked my heart and blood sugar then and decided it was most likely anxiety/panic attacks. She gave me Paxil but I never took it because I wanted to deal with it myself. I'm having a harder time doing it this time around. I will sit and convince myself I have every disease under the sun and that worries me. I get scared to be alone and constantly fear I'm going to die. It does seem to away when I am not thinking about it, but sometimes it's so scary that it's hard not to.

The other thing I've noticed over the past few weeks is I'll wake up in the middle of the night, not breathing. That's been the scariest thing. On those days, my symptoms are worse. I don't know if I have sleep apnea or what, but I have never experienced that before. I don't know if anxiety can cause that or if I have something wrong with me that's causing anxiety? It doesn't happen every night. I am getting like 2-3 hours sleep a night and it's really screwing me up as I am in the process of looking for a job but when I wake up, I'm too tired to even get dressed and leave the house.

I am 26, I am overweight but I've actually lost some weight in the last month or two because I started eating better and working out. I've also started taking several vitamins. Working out doesn't seem to make my symptoms any worse or better but I've been too scared to do it this last week or two. Sitting here, dwelling on them like I am right now seems to be the main culprit but sometimes I have no control over it as much as I'd like to think I do. The times I've felt best in the last week are when I'm not thinking about them...for example, Wed. night, I had a huge stress lifted off my shoulders (I'm going back to school and I found out my financial aid went through after much fear that it wouldn't) and I felt great.

My problem is, I have NO insurance at the moment. My doctor is just a flat $60 visit but I don't know how much I can afford beyond that so I wonder if it's even worth going? I guess I'm just looking for some advice/reassuring words?





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