Monday, January 29, 2007

Another Reason Not to Medicate


Just because I’m not at work doesn’t mean I can’t partake in my favorite day time activity.
Transcription; I live for it. And, it’s a good thing I did stay home today, or I may never have been exposed to this life altering commercial from the ambulance chasers:

"THIS IS AN URGENT MESSAGE!"

"If you or someone you love has taken the prescription drug Paxil and your child was born with a heart defect, pulmonary hypertension, or any other birth defects, you may have a claim to compensation. Call now if you took Paxil and your child was born with a heart defect, pulmonary hypertension or any other birth defect."

"The FDA announced there may be a link between pregnant mothers who took Paxil and heart birth defects or pulmonary hypertension in their children."

It’s always something.

2 comments:

Kate said...

Leila,
It is always something isn't it? I have such a bad case of hypochondria fortunately (or unfortunately) I have been too afraid to take any type of medication for it. But believe me everyone around me WISHES I would! I was convinced I had a brain tumor (I should be dead by now), then MS, abdominal cancer, melanoma and the list goes on...I try to laugh about it. But not everyone thinks it is so funny.

My official anxiety break out started two years ago with my first sinus infection (never felt my sinuses before so I thought it must be a brain tumor - it hurt like hell). Coincidentally, my faither-in-law had just been diagnosed with terminal cancer, my brother was in the throes of his addiction, my brother in laws MS had progressed and my husband was going through a job change. It took me a long time to realize that these events were connected. We can only hold high stress levels for so long.

Luckily, one of our best friends is a Doctor and he diagnosed me without a moments hesitation. Anxiety. I guess he had been observing me for awhile and didn't want to mention some of my precursor anxiety symptoms. Of course I didn't believe him. These feelings were real!! My third eye throbbed for two days! My hands tingled! MS For SURE! On the positive side he did tell me that usually people with anxiety have very high IQ's. And I do. And now I read your blog and see you do too:) Think about the imagination you have to have to be a hypochondriac!

Two years later and probably $25K in all types of therapies (which really worked) I now know that yes, alot of these symptoms will occur if you are at level 10 anxiety for days on end (yes, I rate my anxiety by different levels). Also, a very wise therapist told me that the anxiety chemicals are addicting. Your body will start craving it's fix which means it will have to produce even more frightening symptoms to get more. It took six months for that to sink in.

I am telling you my story briefly to let you know that it's going to get better. You have come such a long way in such a short period of time! To face anxiety you have to face yourself, your experiences and the people in your life. I can't think of anything harder. It takes alot of courage. But I always think of it this way, if I can overcome this - or just learn to live with it without getting anxious - I can overcome anything.
Kate

Leila V. said...

Kate:
Thanks for sharing your story, it reminds me a lot of my own. It’s encouraging to hear from someone who’s fought anxiety without medication.

One of the things that blows me away about the hypochondria is that, like you said, the pain is real! It’s hard to believe that we can create tangible symptoms with sheer will. It definitely must take a powerful and intelligent mind to come up with such scenarios. ;)

I like the concept of rating the anxiety level. I’ll have to try that. Right now I’m just coming to the realization that everyone has anxiety on some level, and that I always will too. The goal is to control it, instead of letting it control me.

I believe that the anxiety chemicals are addicting, I know the behavior alone is. After you act and live a certain way for so long, it just becomes second nature. Change is hard.