Post # 1
I need a little support. I have an anxiety disorder and we are TTC. As a bit of background, I’ve taken meds off and on for the past couple of years. I find that on the meds I really do I have (a certain amount of) control of my life. When off the meds, I spiral out of control. I start thinking that chest pain = heart attack. I have night time panic attacks that interfere with sleep etc… I went off the meds a few months ago so that we could TTC. Well, now we are in the two week wait and my anxiety has taken a turn for the worse. Normally I could take some xanax to help with the panic attacks, but xanax is a big no-no (from what I’ve read) during pregnancy. I’ve tried deep breathing. I’ve eliminated caffeine. Trying not to eat sugar. I’m exercising more. No luck. I don’t know what the specific cause of it all is. It’s a little of everything. TTC, buying a new house, deadlines at work. I’ve got an appointment with my doctor for next week, but frankly another week of these panic attacks is just too much to think about right now.
Have any of you dealt with this type of situation. Any suggestions for how to cope?
Post # 3
@sacbride10: I am also TTC with Anxiety and Panic Disorder and IBS. I have never been on medication for it, but go to a therapist 2x a month, originally once a week. I have been going for 6 months and if it wasn’t for my therapy I never would have been ready to concieve. Are you or have you ever gone to a therapist? It has really helped with my panic attacks and anxiety. Good luck. I feel your pain!
Post # 4
I have anxiety too, and worry (of course I worry lol) about what that will look like when we start TTC.
I used to see a therapist for specific issues that caused the anxiety, and she gave me a “mantra” to say when I get stressed out. It works pretty well, if I catch the anxiety early, and really concentrate. For me, all I do is repeat to myself “Even though I feel like things are out of control, I will be ok, and I am in control”. I usually even close my eyes when I say it, and really, really concentrate on just the words, saying the words over and over again, as well as paying attention to my breathing – to slowing it down to regular, deep breaths. It takes a while, but it does help. She also gave me a little card that has some points on your hands to massage – supposedly deeply massaging these points calms your body down (or, I have convinced myself of this lol, as it does help to calm myself down)
Maybe something like this would help? I’m sorry you are feeling anxious, it’s one of the worst feelings out there ;-(
Post # 5
If you don’t already have a counselor, it might really help you to find one. (though, I’ve had some good, really helpful ones, I’ve also had some that did not help at all, so you might talk to a couple different counselors and see what one is most helpful for you.)
Do you have a good friend who is aware of and supportive through your anxiety issues? Maybe ask her if she’s willing to be extra helpful and talk you down and reassure you when you first start to feel overwhelmed. Explain the extra challenge of going off meds and keep her on speed-dial.
Journaling really helps me…writing about what is causing anxiety can help you to slow your thoughts and take an honest look at the situation. I’m also a big fan of lists for similar reasons. Writing in a journal or even just to do/wish lists can help you to break down these big issues (like buying a house and TTC) into smaller steps and smaller issues that you feel more comfortable handling and like you have control over the smaller parts of these big & exciting things happening in your life.
It sounds like you are doing a lot of really good & healthy things to cope with stress/anxiety by limiting sugar/caffeine intake, exercise and deep-breathing. Sometimes it may take a while for the exercise & diet changes to really help though, so I wouldnt abandon those methods after such a short time.
Post # 6
@sacbride10: I don’t know much about you. But I overcame (am still overcoming) bipolar disorder and anxiety.
I wish there was a magic wand I could wave to help you, but alas, no such a thing.
Honestly, I consider myself a bipolar survivor. I woke up one day and said “no more”.
I WILL BE CONSISTENT… NO MATTER WHAT! When I started feeling “inconsistent”, I just go rinse my hands with cold water and remember that promise I made to myself. I take a few seconds to breathe… and then react CONSISTENTLY with how I WANT my life to be.
For a while, I would wear a funny pin on my shirt. (I have a mickey, a minnie, some different birds…) When I feel my hands start shaking, and my blood rising to the surface of my skin, I look at my pin and remind myself that I don’t want this. And I go wash my hands and let it all wash right down the drain.
“Out of my hands”
Good luck <3
Post # 7
I have pretty intense ADD, and I used to take medication for it( like 2 months ago). I know my husband and I are going to be thinking about babies in the future so I decided to try to function without it and give it really time to get out of my system, before I needed to worry about conceiving. There have been days where i knew without it I would be useless and I could be taking a risk with my job, since without it I am like a hyper 12 year old. Could you focus on you for a little bit? Just get yourself used to life without the drugs before TTC, so if you need to they will be there, and you wont have to worry about a baby? Unless you are already pregnany and then in that case, just congrats.
Post # 8
There is a website and phone help line based out of Sick Kids Hospital in Toronto, Canada, that is very helpful with questions re: taking medications while TTC or pregnant. They provide very insightful information on the safety of specific medications based on scientific evidence that they have collected (either themselves, or from peer reviewed literature in scientific journals) through the years.
When I was a genetic counselling student, I worked a rotation with the mother risk group, and I was amazed at the amount of information they have collected on all sorts of medications. I was also amazed at how many medications were actually safe to take during pregnancy (contrary to popular belief).
Not to say that xanax is safe during pregnancy – as I don’t know the answer to that question – but it might be helpful to call them and ask if there are medications to treat anxiety that ARE considered safe while TTC and/or pregnant.
Too often, women are told to AVOID anything and everything while pregnant, and they suffer needlessly because of it. I understand that one wants to provide the best possible environment for their unborn child, but if one is dealing with a difficult health issue that is better when treated with medication, then perhaps a medicated mother might actually be the best environment for the baby (obviously this depends on the medication in question). Just something to think about.
PS. I also feel very strongly about finding a good therapist to help you deal with your anxiety and panic attacks (if you don’t have one already). Someone who uses cognivitive behavioural therapy for instance, might be very helpful in your situation.
Post # 9
I suffer from anxiety as well and have been on a number of different medications. So I know the frustration you’re going through. My best friend and MoH is currently trying to conceive and she has quite bad anxiety that is tied to her cycle (so going off the pill to TTC made her problems even worse). Her doctor put her on Zoloft. It’s daily and it’s really helped her a lot, and it’s safe to take while pregnant. Talk to your doctor about options for medication. Not to say that you shouldn’t look into therapy as well but as somone said before there is no reason for you to suffer if there is a medication available that will help you and be safe for a fetus. Good Luck!
Post # 10
@nypabride: Do you see a cognitive behavioral therapist or a talk-therapist (pscyhotherapist?).
I’ve tried the talk therapy approach and feel like it never did anything for me. I think I should investigate cognitive behavioral therapy.
I called my psychiatrist today, and she recommended Buspar. She said it doesn’t work for everyone, but it’s a Category B drug for pregnancy. Have any of you tried it? Any positive results? I’m checking with my ob/gyn before starting to take it.
Post # 11
@sacbride10: cognitive behavior therapy
Post # 12
I used to have major anxiety and panic attacks but I learned how to cure it for myself so maybe I can offer you some tips to control it and be gone with it.
The first thing I did was take up running. I found out lots of cardio exercise really helped. It builds endorphins and lets out alot of stress or hidden stress. Another thing I did was when I felt it coming on, sip some orange juice and watch a movie or read a book. The natural sugar in orange juice helped get rid of that feeling. You can also create a calm place in yoru head and go to it while taking deep breathes while you feel one coming on.
I know how hard it is to live with it, but I conquored it and got off meds and so can you! The number one thing is running or cardio exercsize! Good luck!
Post # 13
Wow. Me too. I have weened myself off of my prescription.
But, I have consciously made a decision not to let external events and factors determine my internal compass/mood. Things will go up or down, but I will stay cool.
Also, I keep the manta, “You can’t get it wrong and you’ll never get it done,” when the anxiety creeps up.
I have let go of perfection and instead reach for excellence. I do my best and that helps me to sleep at night.
Because, really that’s all you get. Your best.
I make sure to take time off when I need to. Anxiety attacks appear for me when I am sleep deprived and I am burning the candle at both ends.
But really, nothing is that important.
I also talk to a therapist once a week.
Take a deep breath and picture how happy you’ll be with your baby. 🙂
Post # 14
So, talked with my psychiatrist. She gave me a prescription for Buspar and gave me the name of a therapist. I called the therapist, who hasn’t called me back yet, and filled the Buspar.
Then this morning, I got a positive on a HPT. Then I took another one and it was negative. Ugh. The first one was a Clear Blue Easy digital one. I read that some people get false positives using them. The second test was a First Response digital. Who knows. I’ll test again tomorrow morning.
I didn’t start the Buspar not knowing if I was pregnant, even though supposedly it’s fine with pregnancy. Waiting/uncertainty does not help the anxiety. 🙁