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» LymeNet Flash » Questions and Discussion » Medical Questions » Anxiety and agitation how to deal

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Author Topic: Anxiety and agitation how to deal
jackie81
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So my anxiety and agitation issues are becoming unbearable. I feel like I need to be put in a mental institution or something and its freaking me out alot!

i dont know what to do. i take ativan only .5mgs but i really really dont want to get hooked on it.

the anxiety stops me from functioning and sleeping that is how bad it is..

Should i try a SSRI like cipralex that is for anxiety and depression? what have you done..I suspect i have bart and im scared of what will happen when i start treating it

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TF
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"Agitation" was a good word for what I had. I finally had to see a psychiatrist, it was definitely unbearable. Every minute of every day was a white knuckle ride. Xanax did nothing for it.

He put me on zoloft. I took the first pill immediately. The next morning, when I woke up, I only had a normal amount of thoughts! It was wonderful! I didn't have a million thoughts racing throuogh my mind like I had had. I had peace of mind again!

He started me out on a ridiculously low dose because I had such difficulty any time I tried to take any anti-depressants, no matter which one.

He classified me as having an "agitated depression."

I took zoloft for 9 months. Then, I tapered it off and was done with it. No problem.

By the way, I only saw the psychiatrist in the beginning. Then, he left it up to me to decide how long to take the med and when to stop.

Get help. You don't have to live this way.

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Lauralyme
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Maybe try some transdermal magnesium to see if it helps or at least takes the edge off
It's worth a try

--------------------
Fall down seven times, get up eight
~Japanese proverb

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sandim
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I can completely relate. I always feel on edge. I worry excessively and have developed obsessive compulsive issues. I miss my old self. Where can u purchase the trandesmanal magnesium?
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jenniferk32
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I was always anxious and agitated too and Zoloft did very little to take the edge off. Then I totally snapped and ended up in the psychiatric hospital three times in three months for psychosis.

On the third hospitalization they finally got me started on the right combination of drugs that is helping me enormously. I'm on 200mg of Lamictal (a mood stabilizer and seizure medication) and 20mg of Celexa, an SSRI. Fortunately, neither has made me gain weight or killed my sex drive.

I was never like this before I was infected, so I know it's all from Lyme. But I think the lyme is what causes the chemical imbalances in our brains, and the meds still help resolve those imbalances. I'm sometimes tempted to think that I'm just plain crazy, but then I remember how I felt and thought before being infected and it reassures me otherwise.

Unfortunately, you probably really can't explain to a psychiatrist that you think your problems are from Lyme disease. You'll more than likely get slapped with a label of being paranoid or a hypochondriac. So I never mentioned it to my psychiatrist.

He thinks I'm bipolar and have generalized anxiety and major depressive disorders, and that I'm prone to episodes of severe psychosis. In other words, I'm irreversably crazy!

I disagree with the diagnosis of being bipolar because he talked to me for like a minute in the hospital before giving me that label. I don't go back and forth between episodes of mania and depression. Instead, I have extreme episodes of emotional lability- in other words I go from calm to hysterical in a matter of seconds, especially when having problems with loved ones.

That's not bipolar by any definition in the book. But I don't show the psychiatrist any sort of disagreement because he put me on the mood stabilizer, which I figured would help since I get upset so easily. For all I care, he can label me as Donald Duck as long as the meds he prescribes work.

In your case, you may want to NOT downplay your symptoms to your doctor/psychiatrist. Even if you're afraid you sound crazy. It's better in my experience to get the medication needed to find balance than to struggle daily feeling the way you're describing. It's better for you and your family.

I know no one wants to feel like they have to have a pill to be happy, but you only have one life and if that's what it takes to have a happy one, then so be it.

I have hope that someday my symptoms will all be gone and I can wean off the medication. But if somehow it has permanently altered my brain chemistry then I will stay on medication for the resst of my life so that I won't go back to living a life of misery.

I hope I helped- don't wait until you end up snapping and go to the psych hospital! Tell your doctor that you're afraid of how you feel and desperately want help.

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jenniferk32
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Oh and yes, ativan is addictive. I would try daily therapy medication like an SSRI or mood stabilizer. In my case, the SSRI did not help enough on its own. And they all take a while to kick in and start working, so try and be patient. And DON'T take Cymbalta, for God's sake! It sent me into the worst psychosis the second time I was hospitalized. There are countless episodes of that among people who take it, as well as suicides. I did my research, and that crap should be taken off the market NOW!
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sutherngrl
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I also developed a mood disorder, due to LD. I started taking Risperdal, a mood stabilizer and it worked like a charm on my mood swings and my OCD thoughts. I take Xanax for the anxiety.

Also I have been reading a book that says anxiety is caused by your negative thoughts. I notice that since getting LD, I do have a lot of negative and irrational thoughts. Changing those thoughts to positive, more rational can be helpful in reducing the anxiety.

Magnesium doesn't seem to work for me.

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D Bergy
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You could try Rhodiola rosea. It is a plant that is used in Siberia to relieve depression.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rhodiola_rosea

I have not used it, but did order some today for my son. It has been studied enough to prove that it works. No side effects that I am aware of either.

It would be good if a few people tried this, as we do need an alternative to the pharmaceutical products for this common problem.

Dan

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lyme in Putnam
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Taking Meds for OCD and klonopin for anxiety. Some people respond faster than others to Meds. Doing herbals for treatment. Do whateve it takes. You have to live everyday , do what you need to do.

--------------------
He took u to it, He'll you through

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lyme in Putnam
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Taking Meds for OCD and klonopin for anxiety. Some people respond faster than others to Meds. Doing herbals for treatment. Do whateve it takes. You have to live everyday , do what you need to do.

--------------------
He took u to it, He'll you through

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Liz D
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am 2 years into treatment wiht lyme and bart. anxiety is controlling my life at the moment. I have no idea what I am anxious about because I have nothing in my life to be anxious about. Its just always there and its turning me into a snappy, judgemental horrible person. People who I love and have loved for decades get on my nerves, I feel like I hate everyone and just want to be left alone. If it keeps up I am going to blow a gasket so I guess its meds, here I come.
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Tracy9
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We have a group on Lyme Friends called "Anxiety" that you might useful. Lots of good information, lots of people going through similar things. www.lymefriends.org

--------------------
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13 years Lyme & Co.; Small Fiber Neuropathy; Myasthenia Gravis, Adrenal Insufficiency. On chemo for 2 1/2 years as experimental treatment for MG.

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chiquita incognita
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D Bergy
It may be true that rhodiola is helpful in depression, but this is in the calmed state. In agitation, I would *not!* recommend it. I have training as herbalist. No way! It will support the adrenal glands, is supposed to balance them and in many ways does, but it also has "warming" ie some stimulating qualities and in agitation, that is the last thing a person needs! Oy. Not right now, not in this context. Read Ray Sahelian, MD's review here for further info: http://www.raysahelian.com/rhodiola.html

Here is what helped me. It was definitely induced by the bug fyi, herbal treatment helped me rapidly and I had very low level herxs, not much drama along the way and at least for me, *no* agitation even in herx's. Even though I had severe, severe agitation prior to use. I used (and am still using) the Bar 1 product for bartonella by Healthy Directions.

TO COOL OUT AGITATION:

Medication and a doctor's supervision will be necessary. Below is for adjunct support. Ask your doctor or pharmacist about drug/herb/nutrient interactions, but most things will not interact, even if some of them will. Drug/herb/nutrient interaction below is not intended to be a complete list, be sure to ask about this.

Rub coconut oil all over your body. Alongside the spine on both sides, everywhere on the body to the soles of your feet. I used about 1 tbsp at a time, and sometimes I had to use it two or three times a day. But it helped a lot.

Taking the oil internally can be helpful too.

THis has helped me *a lot!* when lyme induced nerve agitation!

According to Dr Michael Murray, ND studies have shown the fats in coconut oil to be useful even in epileptic seizures.

Strong epsom salt baths, add 20 drops of lavender oil or geranium oil to bath. Epsom salts are a good source of transdermal magnesium, for the person who asked above, but you need lots in agitated states. I use about 3 heaping handfulls per bath and take long soaks.

I drank chamomile tea with about a teaspoon of orange blossom water (at Middle Eastern food markets) this is yummy, smells positively heavenly and can be very settling. High in flavonoids, which are nerve calming but may possibly contribute to herxing, so go moderately. It helped me *a lot!* But I did get some babesia die off symptoms (dizziness, wobbliness on feet) with orange blossom water, it is not toxic and does not ordinarily have this effect at all. I think it was herxing, the flavonoids are bug killers.

To chamomile tea, you can also add: Linden (tilia) exctract, lemon balm (melissa) extract. Glycerin will taste better than alchohol extracts, if available. Alchohol will have more of the herbal constituents than glycerin, but either one can be helpful if these are the right herbs for you.

Gluten free, essential as experiment. If you turn out to be gluten intolerant, then nerve issues can settle right down (or at least, in part) in a matter of weeks or a month or two. If you are not gluten intolerant, it won't help so you will know either way.

Sugar, caffeine, food allergies will contribute to nerve agitation

Homeopathic Hyland's Calms Forte (in healthfood stores) can be helpful

Skullcap, passionflower can be helpful in hysteria, so can orange blossom water.

Kava can be very sedating. CAUTIONS: Avoid in liver disease or highly allergic states. Do not use for long term and do not mix with xanax or other drugs that enhance GABA uptake in the brain. Kava enhances GABA uptake. Can work very well if not allergic or no liver disease. Not for longterm use. Can be excellent short term intervention

Tulsi or Holy Basil blocks cortisols,can be used safely and long term in most cases. (I myself have a contradictory response, but this is rare. I have seen many people do really well with tulsi).

Phosphatidyllserine (PS) blocks cortisols. My acupuncturist said that it requires high dosage orally and is most effective when soaked into the blood via the skin. This cream is excellent, applied to vascular areas of the skin (veins behind knees, elbows on underside of arm on the same level with the palm of hte hand, etc):

http://www.apexenergetics.com/newproducts/newproducts.htm

IT may not be one thing acting alone, but a combination of things that can help.

Take care of yourself. THings pass, remember that. With treatment and the right intervention, and under a good doctor's care, you will be okay and things will get better. Treating the infections is key.


The above information has not been evaluated by the FDA and does not diagnose, cure or prevent any disease. Drugs and herbs can interact, talk with your doctor. This is for adjunct support.

[ 03-28-2011, 07:46 AM: Message edited by: chiquita incognita ]

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D Bergy
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If you do not try it, how would you know your "state"?

Ginger and Turmeric are also warming herbs, and are used by my wife and many others, with no bad effects.

It will either work, or it won't, but until you try it is all speculation. It could make symptoms worse, but anything can do that in any given person. Simply quit using it.

It certainly cannot be as toxic as any given pharmaceutical product to treat the same.

Dan

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annier1071
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I am with you all the way with the anxiety all day long. I have been on xanax and told by LLMD to take 1mg every four hours to calm the vibrating nerves but I wont go above 2 a day...too afraid even though I know I will by physically addicted at this point.

I will handle the xanax issue when I am in control of this lyme. I was given zoloft but too afraid to take it. SSRI are just as addictive as benzos so I dont want two issues in my life

I find the espon baths great!! Hope your trying them

--------------------
Diagnosed with chronic neuro lyme 12/10 after 30 years of vertigo.2 tick bites in 3 yrs from upstate NY. Was on omincef for nine mths..zith and rifampin stopped.Remission~ All the pain and symptoms are back and I am not treating now with biaxin.

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chiquita incognita
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Hi Dan
Thank you for your message. And sorry as I surely did not mean to "counter" you in the personal way that it appears it may have come across? this was not the intent. If it did, my apologies right now!

Ginger and turmeric wouldn't contribute to agitation because they work differently, on the physiological level. They don't stimulate the adrenal glands. That's the key.

The glands and nervous system interact, in fact medicine is calling them one interactive body system. The endocrine-nervous system, not two body systems functioning separately.

Ginger *could* *possibly* contribute to some agitation because as a hot spice, it dilates the capillaries. This brings circulation to the surface and *could* *possibly* contribute if the nerves are already inflamed or agitated.

HOwever with ginger this is unlikely, it is itself anti-inflammatory. I would be more concerned about going easy on cayenne pepper, chilis, dried mustard and the like during a flare.

Glad to say that there is no longer any need for guesswork with herbs, thanks to the science informing herbalism now, it's called phytotherapy. Originated in Europe and is now in America too. They study herbal constituents, do double blind studies, drug herb interactions are being logged and studied, much more. They know much more about herbs now than to make it guesswork, and also how to typecast herbs to different body types.

That was part of hte training when I studied herbalism (can't use the past tense because it is a life-long work once science gets involved, and we can't ever know it all! No way. Compared to giants in the field, I am truly a baby at this, truly).

The interesting thing is that according to the phytotherapy authority I studied with, the studies are largely proving the old wives' tales to be true. After all, the herbs have been used for thousands of years with specific purposes in mind, and there is a reason for that.

Wishing you and everybody here the best, adn thanks for stepping forward! Have a great day.

Sincerely, CI

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D Bergy
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I did not take offense, but like anything else, everyone responds differently to different things.
I know what you are saying, but risk is relative to your other options, and I did not want that point to get lost.

I see trying the lesser of two evils as the logical way to proceed. I have never used any specific anxiety/depression herbs or drugs, so my experience is nil on any of it.

I resolved my own depression problems, which haunted me for over thirty years by reducing inflammation. I simply used Krill Oil, Turmeric and Ginger to control my Crohn's. It was quite by accident that it resolved my depression. It would not have had to have been so difficult. No health professional ever indicated to me that inflammation alone could cause this. But it can.

That does not mean it is the cause of everyone's depression, but if you have an inflammatory condition, and depression and/or anxiety that follows it, it is something to consider.

I simply was not going to use any drugs to treat depression. I learned to cope with it, long before I knew I had it, and I was prepared to live with it.

What worries me is if someone bypasses something that may help them, that has little risk, and instead opts for a hard hitting drug. That is fine if that is the only thing that helps, but often that is not the case.

I have nothing against drugs, but from the perspective of how to treat a problem, the list of things to try should go from the least risky to the most. In the end, you have to use whatever works, drugs herbs whatever.

I appreciate your warning, as information is always useful, but if I had the choice of trying Prozac or Rhodiola Rosea for my condition, I would not want to start with Prozac.

Of course if there are safe, herbal treatments that would are likely better than Rhodiola rosea, for a Lyme patient, they should be used first.

I would add that anything that reduces inflammation is likely to help both Lyme, and mental problems.

I would say even Rhodiola rosea should be used before a pharmaceutical product, because it is the safer option.

You minimize risk, and the worst that will happen is your will not respond positively, or even negatively. The same is true of depression drugs, except they are not as safe.

I hope that clarifies what my thinking is on treatment in general. There is a logical order in which to try different treatments, an that is how I go about it. I did not mean to imply that my suggestion was the best one, but one of many options that should be tried before the more risky options.

It is good to have someone on board that has a better grasp of herbal treatments.

Dan

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elizzza811
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quote:
Originally posted by jenniferk32:
On the third hospitalization they finally got me started on the right combination of drugs that is helping me enormously. I'm on 200mg of Lamictal (a mood stabilizer and seizure medication) and 20mg of Celexa, an SSRI.

When I read Lamictal helped your agitation, my eyes popped out of my head. I have this problem, too. Only after running my car into a ditch back in December did they realize I was suffering complex partial seizures.

So I would seriously go to a neuro and request a video EEG, especially if Lamictal is helping your 'agitation'.

--------------------
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