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Terrible anxiety at night
lyssabear__ posted:
Recently my anxiety has crept back into my life.. whoopie. -.- I've suffered with anxiety for about, say 6 years now. It was severe for the first two years and then it died down as if it was no longer there, but now its back, and worse than ever.

The things I'm most.. anixous so you could say, about is socializing. Its hard for me to go out to different places, the mall is a good example, without constantly worrying about something. Another one is the fear of death.

Death is probably my number 1 fear. I don't understand why i worry about it because i know there is absolutely nothing i can do about it and worrying wont get me anywhere but i still do.

Now onto talking about the anxiety getting worse at night. I dont understand why or how but every night around, say 11 pm, my anxiety levels spike up. Im absolutely exhausted, but my anxiety keeps me up. I feel as if im going to lose the ability to think (sounds weird, right?), i feel like im living in sort of like a dream, my mouth gets dry and i feel as if im going to stop breathing.

These panic attacks last for about 10 to 15 minutes. May not sound really bad but once they happen is absolutely terrifying. I dont understand whats causing my anxiety to worsen at these times but i want it to stop.

Ive gone to the doctors a few times about it and they prescribed me medication but i do NOT want to take it. I hear so many stories about how they got addicted to it and i just dont want that to happen. I want to be able to learn how to control my anxiety at these times without anxiety medication.

Does anyone know some like simple technices to sort of relax myself and get these thoughts out of my mind?

(Ps: please dont tell me to do breathing excersis. Ive tried them and they only make it worse.)
Patricia Farrell, PhD responded:
Ok, I would have suggested my relaxation breathing video tutorial (in our Tips column) but if you don't want to do that and you don't want meds, it makes it a bit more difficult to offer suggestions.

What about stress in your life? Getting anxious at night sounds like something may be going on, but that's just a guess without much information. Depending on how anxious you are, your doc could prescribe meds that aren't addictive and are generally used for performance anxiety (actually an anti-hypertensive med). It's not addictive. I'm not an MD, but I think you might want to ask about this.

Next, I'd recommend regular exercise. Believe it or not research is pointing to exercise being something that should be in every treatment plan because it has a great ability to help with anxiety, depression and stress.

And you need enough sleep, proper diet and time out to do something you enjoy. Try all of it and it just might be what you need.

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