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Thread: After 12 years I have finally accepted I need medication.. but im scared! Need advice

  1. #1
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    After 12 years I have finally accepted I need medication.. but im scared! Need advice

    Hi all,

    I have always been reluctant to take medication for my panic attacks/anxiety because of the side effects.... I have a vomit phobia and all side effects seem to include nausea and vomitting!

    Since i started with this when i was 11, iv tried councelling, CBT twice, hypnotherapy twice, just getting on with it myself.. and nothing has worked! Dont get me wrong, cbt and hypnotherapy helped to ease it alittle but i am still experiancing panic attacks daily and they are really starting to take hold of my life again..

    I know i cant live my life like this, i have a job i love and i dont want to loose it because of this so i have finally accepted that medication may be the way forward...

    As i dont know much about the meds i can take I was looking for some real advice... I do have a doctors appointment on Tuesday morning to discuss it with her but i wanted to hear real stories from the people who are actually taking it rather than reading the side effects etc from a text book!

    What i was after was what medication there is out there best to stop or help panic attacks and general anxiety and also the side effects or stories of how you have been on them all?

    Good and bad stories are welcome as i want to get a real picture of it all... I want to know what im letting myself in for!

    I have already decided to book 2 weeks off work when i start the meds so i have a couple of weeks to relax with no big commitments incase i do feel unwell, so i also wanted to know how long the side effects happen for?

    Thank you in advance, i appreciate it

  2. #2
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    Re: After 12 years I have finally accepted I need medication.. but im scared! Need ad

    You could read the Citalopram surival guide on here (sticky thread in the citalopram forum) as that will give you an idea what that medication is like and most GP's seem to prescribe it nowadays.
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    Nicola

    “Don't be afraid of death; be afraid of an unlived life. You don't have to live forever, you just have to live.” - Natalie Babbitt

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  3. #3
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    Re: After 12 years I have finally accepted I need medication.. but im scared! Need ad

    Thank you Nicola - im half way through reading it and it is a great help!!

    Has anyone had any other medication other than citalopram?
    Or have good/bad experiances of being on that med? x

  4. #4
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    Re: After 12 years I have finally accepted I need medication.. but im scared! Need ad

    IMO Cipralex is the one fairyclairy.

    Yes,there ARE side effects. Sadly, there is no way around that. It is like going through the eye of the storm but with the knowledge that on the other side is the better weather....and THERE IS.

    I have been on and off Cipralex for years and not once have experienced any vomiting. As far as I am aware, nausea is the most common side effect, but I don't recall vomiting as being up there. I felt nauseous and it put me off my food, but no actual vomiting at all.

    I too suffered bad panic attacks and anxiety preceded by depression, and it was the panic attacks that made me go for meds as they scared me so much. The first 2-3 weeks were unsettled - with the side effects I have mentioned and headaches, drowsiness and a spaced out, heightened anxiety feeling - but if you tell yourself CONSTANTLY that this is just side effects and you will feel better soon, you can get through it.

    I would in fact recommend any of the SSRI drugs as I think their track record is much better, particularly for panic and anxiety. Cipralex is my own personal fave as it was a wonder drug for me. My panic attacks were bad enough to cause me to pass out, doubtless from hyperventilation and the meds really stopped this in its tracks. I also had counselling for my depression and anxiety but the meds were the crutch for me whilst I was undergoing that.

    I am amazed that you have dealt with your conditions so long without meds. They honestly are worth taking hun and will help you very much I am sure.

    Good luck.xxxx

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    Re: After 12 years I have finally accepted I need medication.. but im scared! Need ad

    Hi fairyclairy

    Before taking Citalopram I too was struggling with anxiety & panic attacks, i was just too scared to take it. That was 21/2 years ago & I have no regrets in taking.

    I was prescribed 20mg with is a high start dose & I suggest that starting on a lower dose would be a more gentle introduction to the side effects. Please remember that everyone reacts differently to medication but here is my experience
    Day 1-3 I felt a bit wobbly but ok
    Day 4-8 I felt rubbish! like i had a bad dose of the flu, headaches, hot sweats, aching limbs, I had no nausea or vomiting.

    Then for the next few weeks I felt off colour, very tired & a bit irritable. My gp advised this was all normal & suggested I drink plenty of water & slept as much as i needed too.

    Over the next 2mths gradually began to feel much better, my panic attacks became less frequent & my anxiety levels reduced. At 3mths I no longer had any side effects, a year later my GP increased my dose to 40mg with no extra side effects.

    I am very pleased with the outcome of taking Citalopram, I have also been in therapy with a psychologist & feel that a combination of the two gives the best chance of recovery.

    I wish you well on Tuesday & hope that in time you too will feel the benefits of medication. Please remember that you have been suffering for 12yrs & there is no quick fix, its takes tiny steps to recover but with the right support i hope you find some relief soon.
    Take care & please come back & let us know how you get on.

  6. #6
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    Re: After 12 years I have finally accepted I need medication.. but im scared! Need ad

    Thank you for your replies

    I am at the doctors in the morning to get some advice.. I have also been reading the herbal remedies section and found inositol has worked wonders for people so i have ordered some today from holland and barrett and will try those first as they have very few, mild side effects.... i am still going to get the advice on the meds tomorrow as i need to know my options if inositol doesnt work as that will be the last option.

    xx

  7. #7

    Re: After 12 years I have finally accepted I need medication.. but im scared! Need ad

    I recently started on paroxetine. Like you, I was very nervous about side effects, and too have a sickness phobia. However, I couldnt go on as I was, I had to try something.
    I was started on 10mg per day. I found out I had to take it as 5mg in the morning, and 5mg at night as 10mg in one go left me feeling lightheaded and dizzy. I also found that I grind my teeth in my sleep, and wake up with really achey teeth and jaws. After two weeks, I was able to take the 10mg in one go in the morning, I found if I took it with food, I had no side effects throughout the day. This was difficult to begin with as I never have breakfast, so I had to start.
    Three weeks ago, my dose was upped to 20mg, and my anxiety and panics attacks have eased right off. I still feel mildly anxious at times, but it literally lasts minutes, and I have had no panic attacks at all in three weeks now. Again, the side effects kicked up when I increased the dose, the teeth grinding got bad again, there was mild dizziness and lightheadedness and slight difficulty in sleeping, but again that has now gone and I am able to take the 20mg in one go in the morning.

    I think the thing to remember is that side effects generally wear off as you begin to tolerate the medication. The week or so after commencing the medication and increasing the dose was not much fun with the side effects, but I was determined to persevere, and am now extremely pleased I did. The side effects have now worn off and I am feeling much better.

    Good luck tomorrow.

  8. #8
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    Re: After 12 years I have finally accepted I need medication.. but im scared! Need ad

    Thank you for all your replies..

    I went to the doctors yesterday and saw a new doctor who was absolutly fantastic - she really knew her stuff!
    She listened to what i had to say and gave me lots of information on the medication, she has made me feel much better about things.
    She was talking about citalopram and gave me an information sheet on it and discussed about the side effects etc.
    She also wants to do blood tests to rule out thyroid problems (my mum has over-active) and also low blood count etc just to make sure there isnt anything else!
    She said she'd do it there and then so i wouldnt have to worry about it but me being me got really nervous and said id come back and make another app with the nurse... (regretting that now as iv now got days to worry, should have just got on with it and it wud have been over now! lol but oh well) So im going again on tues for the blood tests... if nothing comes back then i can think about starting the meds.
    I am still waiting for the inositol to arrive and i am going to give that a go first and then go back to the docs to start the meds if that isnt really working! xx

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