Anxiety and Multiple Sclerosis: Seek Help!

Lisa Emrich Health Guide April 30, 2012
  • From where I live on the globe, the earth is spinning at approximately 800 miles per hour.  However, it feels like life is traveling at the speed of light at approximately 700 million miles per hour.  In other words, life needs to SLOW DOWN!! Earlier this month, I wrote about the stress and...

9 Comments
  • TickledPink
    May. 01, 2012

    Hi Lisa! Thanks for sharing your experience and the tips for managing anxiety.

    My last RRMS relapse, (which by the way was over 5 years ago now! woot!)  was characterized by terrible panic attacks. I was having severe attacks 3-4 times per week. Twice I drove myself to the ER thinking I was in the middle of a heart attack only to have it wear off before...

    RHMLucky777

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    Hi Lisa! Thanks for sharing your experience and the tips for managing anxiety.

    My last RRMS relapse, (which by the way was over 5 years ago now! woot!)  was characterized by terrible panic attacks. I was having severe attacks 3-4 times per week. Twice I drove myself to the ER thinking I was in the middle of a heart attack only to have it wear off before the triage nurse ever even saw me.

    The weakest dose of Xanax is what my neuro prescribed, and I would break those into quarters. A quarter of a Xanax was all I needed to bring me back down to earth. My sister once made the observation that I could probably just lick the pill or sniff the bottle and I'd be fine.

    It's not fun to be anxious. And I completely relate to how you feel the need for everything in life to just slow down.

     

    Nowadays I haven't been having the panic attacks, but I do feel anxious at times and stressed out over what life throws at me. I try to find time to commune with nature. It's what grounds me. Whether it is sitting outside and listening to the birds and feeling the sun on my face, or something so simple as petting my cat. The relaxation it brings will at least temporarily wash the anxiety away.

     

    I know you spread yourself thin. You seem to be everything to everybody. You are a person others go to when they need to get something done. Heck, even with all you have going on, you still come here to feed US and turn something which is  a negative in your life into a positive act of sharing your story with others like you.

    Take a break, Lisa. Allow yourself to relax and breathe. Your body is trying to tell you. Take care of YOU first or you can't be helping all the rest of us. <3

    Thank you for all you do.

    Jeri 

    • Alicia
      May. 03, 2012

      Jeri!!!!

       

         I'm so thankful to know that I'm not the only one with MS on Xanax.  I have 3 small kids, a husband with Allergic Asthma that flares up at the flick of a fly's wings.  He really cant help me much even tho im in the middle of a bad flare up. I also run a daycare with 7 other kids at our house until I get approved for...

      RHMLucky777

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      Jeri!!!!

       

         I'm so thankful to know that I'm not the only one with MS on Xanax.  I have 3 small kids, a husband with Allergic Asthma that flares up at the flick of a fly's wings.  He really cant help me much even tho im in the middle of a bad flare up. I also run a daycare with 7 other kids at our house until I get approved for SSDI.  So yeah I'm stressed, but Im like you. I break up the Xanax into quarters and it really helps, I could probably just lick it too! Haha. One time I took a half pill because my middle son's ADHD was really acting up and I was gonna snap.  I ended up falling asleep for 15 min while the kids watched a movie. 

        Anyhow I digress...   Thank you for giving me permission for it to be okay to need the help of pills. Now I need the help of SSDI, that would be even more relief.

      Thanks

      ALicia

    • TickledPink
      May. 04, 2012

      There is stigma attached to anything that might be perceived as "mental", and that's unfortunate. When our MS attacks that part of our brains which controls emotion, we can't help it. We aren't crazy, and we certainly aren't "pill poppers" if we have to use medication to treat it.

       

      Be easy on yourself Alicia. Even without MS it sounds like your average...

      RHMLucky777

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      There is stigma attached to anything that might be perceived as "mental", and that's unfortunate. When our MS attacks that part of our brains which controls emotion, we can't help it. We aren't crazy, and we certainly aren't "pill poppers" if we have to use medication to treat it.

       

      Be easy on yourself Alicia. Even without MS it sounds like your average day would probably be a Xanax day for most people. Do what you have to do, love yourself and your family, and don't worry about what others might think if they knew you need a medication to get through this. It's not your fault. {{hugs}}

    • Lisa Emrich
      Health Guide
      May. 12, 2012

      Alicia,

       

      I just wanted to say "hi" and thanks for joining the conversation.  Absolutely OKAY to use medication as needed and directed.  If Xanax just happens to be a part of your health-related tool box, then certainly wield that tool wisely. 

       

      I can't imagine life with so many family members. My hat's off to you.  While you...

      RHMLucky777

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      Alicia,

       

      I just wanted to say "hi" and thanks for joining the conversation.  Absolutely OKAY to use medication as needed and directed.  If Xanax just happens to be a part of your health-related tool box, then certainly wield that tool wisely. 

       

      I can't imagine life with so many family members. My hat's off to you.  While you are taking care of everybody else, be sure to take care of yourself.

    • Lisa Emrich
      Health Guide
      May. 12, 2012

      Jeri,

       

      Thank you!!

       

      It really does help to know that you are not alone.  I've finally seemed to come out of this anxious funk for the most part.  Obligations are wrapping up and I can finally see the end of the tunnel (after one more recital, preparation for two presentations, and two trips, including one to Zurich).  And maybe, try...

      RHMLucky777

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      Jeri,

       

      Thank you!!

       

      It really does help to know that you are not alone.  I've finally seemed to come out of this anxious funk for the most part.  Obligations are wrapping up and I can finally see the end of the tunnel (after one more recital, preparation for two presentations, and two trips, including one to Zurich).  And maybe, try to write a few things too.  :)

       

      I know that I get stretched too thin at times.  It's hard to know how NOT to do that.  I haven't learned yet.

       

      Absolutely FANTASTIC that you haven't had a relapse in FIVE years.  Gilenya has worked wonders for you.  Great.  I'm so happy for you.

       

      Fortunately, my relapse rate has dropped since 2009 and last fall's relapse happened probably just because I was pushing my treatment too far into the future.  My body likes getting its B-cells depleted somewhat. 

       

      As for Xanax, half a pill works nicely when I start to feel that little flutter of something in my chest.  A whole pill when things are already getting to the surface.  Licking the pills, though?  Yuck, they don't have the sweetest flavor.  ;)

       

      I really appreciate your kind words.  Someday we'll finally meet and I'll have to give you a big hug.  Thank you.

  • Maris B. Mohr
    May. 01, 2012

    Hi Lisa & Everyone,

     

    As long as I'm not traveling (to drs or family issues), I start my day with a long swim. Unless my physical pain is too unbearable, my mental state stays good.

     

    I must admit though that 2 days ago I did cry with pain. It didn't give me a lot of relief, but I couldn't take it anymore. That's sometimes hard to explain to my...

    RHMLucky777

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    Hi Lisa & Everyone,

     

    As long as I'm not traveling (to drs or family issues), I start my day with a long swim. Unless my physical pain is too unbearable, my mental state stays good.

     

    I must admit though that 2 days ago I did cry with pain. It didn't give me a lot of relief, but I couldn't take it anymore. That's sometimes hard to explain to my DH, who is usually understanding and helpful about everything. I guess no one who isn't in our shoes can get it completely.

     

    Here's to feeling goodSmile.

    Maris

    • Lisa Emrich
      Health Guide
      May. 12, 2012

      Hi Maris,

       

      Crying can be good for you, but I'm sorry to hear that the pain has gotten to that level recently.  Knowing that you swim everyday makes me smile.  Such a nice way to start the day (I really should start doing that again myself, at least a couple days a week).

       

      Your positive attitude is contagious.  Thank you!

       

  • tellnhelen
    Apr. 30, 2012

    Lisa

    When I saw the nurse practioner the state of my mental health emerged too....and I cried (to my own surprise).  In mean the tears just happened.  I don't often take time to "feel" this monster...to feel my fear..my frustration..my physical or emotional pain.  Thankfully She and folks (like you) help me to know that it's OK...that it's normal. ...

    RHMLucky777

    Read More

    Lisa

    When I saw the nurse practioner the state of my mental health emerged too....and I cried (to my own surprise).  In mean the tears just happened.  I don't often take time to "feel" this monster...to feel my fear..my frustration..my physical or emotional pain.  Thankfully She and folks (like you) help me to know that it's OK...that it's normal.  Yes, she gve me a Rx for the pain.  Its neuropathic ya know but it still hurts.  Gonna address a few more sxs too.  Not walking much these days.,.still tryn though.  So on with the struggle..on with my life.  Thank you for your timely post.  helen

    • Lisa Emrich
      Health Guide
      May. 01, 2012

      Helen,

      I'm sorry to hear that the emotions have exploded for you too lately.  But I'm very glad to know that you can talk about it and that you've got a great nurse who respects and listens to you.  I hope that the tx works for the neuropathic pain.  That should help with the mental health somewhat too.  Hope to hear that you feel a bit...

      RHMLucky777

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      Helen,

      I'm sorry to hear that the emotions have exploded for you too lately.  But I'm very glad to know that you can talk about it and that you've got a great nurse who respects and listens to you.  I hope that the tx works for the neuropathic pain.  That should help with the mental health somewhat too.  Hope to hear that you feel a bit better soon.

      Lisa