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My Journey with Panic disorder.

Ilsaq

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Hello Everyone, My name is Ilsa and I am 19 years old. I never thought that I would be writing this but here I am. A year ago I was diagnosed with a Panic disorder and was sick to the point that I had to leave my A-levels studies in between and move back to Germany to my Parent‘s house. I was rushed to the a&e twice due to my panic attacks where my heart rate was 136 beats per second and i was unable to breathe. I also had to visit a therapist for 6 weeks. Now you must be wondering how did I get into this situation, well I have had anxiety for years but I never realised how serious it was. I always thought that I was going through a phase and that if I keep myself busy, I will be „normal“ again. Well, after holding it in for so many years, my body decided to let me know that I was hurting.

It started with chest pains at night which were so painful that I thought I was having a heart attack, almost every night I was out of breath and in so much pain that I couldn’t sleep. Even lying down was so painful sometimes that I would sit my myself against the wall and sleep. Yet still, I thought I was suffering from a musculoskeletal pain that was caused due to sitting too much on the computer for my IT course in College and lack of exercise. I visited my doctor multiple times, yet couldn’t find the right reason or cure for the pain. At last the pain got so worse that I would be vomiting the in toilet at my college and missing out on my lessons.

Then on 29th October 2019 I was first rushed to the hospital due a panic attack which I mistook as a heart attack. I stayed in bed for two straight days after and didn’t have the energy to eat or drink. At that point it dawned to me that something was clearly wrong with my body and mind. I was so exhausted that I couldn’t continue anymore. My parents were very worried and suggested I move back home and after a lot of overthinking, I decided to move back and leave my studies behind. It was one of the hardest decisions I have made.

Even after moving to Germany, I visited many doctors and even had a whole spine x-ray in order to find the physical cause for my chest pains. At that point I even wished that I had a muscular disease that the doctor suspected I had just so I can find a reason as to why I am in so much pain. The reports came clear and my body was completely healthy. At that point I didn’t no what to do, the doctor suggested that there is a possibility that I may be experiencing pain due psychological issues. I still didn’t wanted to believe that my brain can cause this much pain to my body. Yet I still decided to visit a therapist and tried to slowly accept the reality.

There was still something missing, because just a day before my last therapy session, I was rushed to hospital again due to lack of breathing and my muscles were so under stress that the muscles around my mouth tighten and I almost couldn’t open my mouth. That day as my parents rushed me to the hospital, I kept on crying out “ I don’t want to die, I don’t want to die”.

I survived. After that night I was fully aware what was wrong with me, I had a Panic disorder which I have suffered for many years but only realised how bad it was. At first I was afraid to take medication for my disorder but then I went to see a neurologist and started with anti-anxiety medication. Which really helped me. It has been a year since I started my treatment and accepted my Anxiety, I am much better now. Other than medication, I also practice breathing techniques which help me through my panic attacks, which I still get but I can handle them better since I am aware of them now.

My purpose of telling you my story is that Anxiety and Depression are not phases that will go away in some time, they are illness that can put people in a lot pain. Comments like “ You are just overreacting” “ Don’t think too much” “ It’s just a phase” “ you will be fine as time goes on” don’t help us instead they hurt us. Just because I don’t have a physical condition doesn’t mean I am not hurting. Mental illness are serious medical conditions and need proper treatments like therapy or if required medication. MENTAL ILLNESS IS NOT A PHASE.

We need to change this negative stigma around metal health so that the people who need help can actually get the help they need. We need to support each other. If you think someone is suffering from anxiety or depression, please go up to that person and try to ask them if they need help because you might be the help they have been waiting for.

At last I want to thank my family who supported me through my difficult times and accepted me for who I am. I want to thank God who gave me strength to go through this hard time and listened to my prayers and cries and to all the medical staff who took care of me when I was in so much pain. I will always be grateful that I was able to accept myself and slowly heal. I will try my best and I hope that everyone who are suffering will also be able to accept themselves and heal! Thank you for listening to me! ❤

We can get through this! I would love to hear your stories too! Let’s talk about anxiety and help each other!
 

cheer_mom

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Sep 5, 2019
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Love this. Thank you for this post. I really needed to see this today.
 
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