anyone else struggle with Anxiety? - page 3

I always thought once I'd been a nurse for a few years that the anxiety would go away. I'm talking SEVERE, heart pounding, "can't sleep, want to throw up and head is killing me because I have to go... Read More

  1. by   sameasalways
    Wellbutrin is really the worst choice of meds when it comes to anxiety. You really should just try something different. Wellbutrin tends to be more excitatory...exactly what someone who is already anxious DOESN'T need. Its common to have to switch and try different things but its worth it in the end. Wellbutrin added to a different SSRI or other anxiety med might be okay purely as an anti-sexual side effect type of thing..but on its own for anxiety its really not the best choice.
  2. by   Lynda Lampert, RN
    Well, this post made me finally creep out of the woodwork. I've been reading this board for months and months, but never really had anything to say.

    I am five months from graduation (ADN) and just diagnosed as Bipolar type II with lots of anxiety and mostly just depression. Been dealing with this for a very long time -- probably since grade school.

    Nursing school -- clinicals, really -- have increased my anxiety exponentially to the point that I am irrationally feeling like I will be kicked out of school. I'm assure by many and sundry that it is not the case, but anxiety is not something that you can talk a person out of.

    I just wanted to thank everyone who has posted in this thread at just this time just when I needed it. It gives me courage to know that people with anxiety can still be nurses -- and successful ones -- if they take care of themselves.

  3. by   want2scuba
    This is the thread I've needed the most. I have a diagnosed severe anxiety disorder with panic attacks. I am just pre-nursing doing my prereqs. I have been so worried about my disorder, I keep going back and forth trying to decide if nursing is for me.

    It is reassuring that people that are actually nurses feel some of the same symptoms I do. I've been given "advice" from an adjunct remedial algebra teacher that I should not go into nursing if I have an anxiety disorder.

    This teacher went so far as to almost accuse me of using my age 41, and an anxiety disorder as a crutch. I brought a letter from my psychiatrist that I have a "panic disorder." He said that, in his opinion, this would not warrant any special considerations. I asked him if that was his medical opinion, because it certainly was not my doctor's opinion.

    This was also a class I had an A in. I didn't even have to take it because I already have college algebra from my first degree. I just took it to brush up my skills for the NLN exam.

    My doctor says that there are so many areas for nurses. A hospital may not be my best choice. In fact, I have no desire to work in a hospital. I would like to be a nurse in a doctor's office.

    I will not be scared out of pursuing my dream by some pseudo shrink of a teacher.

    My chemistry professor has been great. He lets me take my quizzes in his office. He also lets me finish my exams in his office. This past semester was the first time I've been in school since I graduated college in 1986. My chemistry professor gave me a ton of support. He said that with my weak math skills, he was amazed at how I worked so hard and overcame obstacles he never thought I could.

    That class was rough for me. I ended up with an 88.7% which is a B+ at my school. I feel more self confidence than I have for a long time.

    My husband was an ER doctor for 25 years. He has recently retired. I haven't worked in over 17 years. I am ready to do something for myself.

    This thread has really helped me to know that nurses do have problems with anxiety. I am receiving help. My anxiety disorder has caused me many times to consider Radiology school. I know that is not what I want to do.

    Thanks for this thread.
  4. by   ONSnrs
    wellbutrin BID, only thing that works for me.
  5. by   Curious1alwys
    The comment about Wellbutrin making things worse for people with anxiety is very, very true. My pdoc flat out refused to put me on that one after a bout of homicidal rage from the med in the past.

    Maybe you just need a change in medication?

    After trying a slew of meds for anxiety, I found some relief with Lamictal. It is an anticonvulsant, used as a mood stabilizer, most often in those with bipolar disorder but is now being used for anxiety/depression as well. NO SIDE EFFECTS WHATSOEVER for me. The perfect med in my opinion, if you can stave off the 'lamictal rash' (it can cause a rash in some people that can progress to Stevens Johnsons Syndrome, so if you develop a rash on it you cannot continue taking it. I never did though!)

    Exercise is essential for me too. When I am not exercising and trying to eat right, my anxiety goes thru the roof. ALWAYS.

    Good Luck and I hope you find something that works for you!:spin:
  6. by   NurseCard
    Oh, heck yeah. I struggle quite a bit with depression, low self esteem, and anxiety which is mostly a result of the depression and low self esteem. =) I had to get out of Med/Surge because I just could not handle the stress and the pace anymore. That's not to say of course, that someone who suffers can't practice Med/Surge, or any other fast paced field, with a lot of relaxation techniques, confidence in one's self, and perhaps medication.

    Now I work in psych, which is surprisingly MUCH less stressful most of the time, but I still deal with my low self esteem and depression issues, sometimes making my job rather difficult... decision making is really hard, because I really tend to doubt myself. I actually don't take anything right now because I am managing to "make it" and function pretty well without meds, and I'm pretty happy most of the time. But I've been on Paxil (which worked the best but had crappy side effects so I got off of it), Paxil CR, Lexapro, and Zoloft. The Paxil was really the only one that relieved my symptoms well.
  7. by   mercyteapot
    My anxiety level just gets worse with each passing year. It is nearly unmanageable.
  8. by   LargoLPN
    Quote from MsPiggy
    Me too, have had anxiety/severe panic attacks since age father had awful ones too. I was on Paxil for a few yr.s but then started having negative side effects, took me 6 months to wean off it. Now I just take .5 xanax prn, a few time a week usually, unless i'm flying I take a hefty dose and pray for sleep and to not freak out during the flight, lol..last time I took 2 mg before our flight & screamed (how embarassing!) during take-off.

    I had a unusally severe panic attack while driving this week but I can usually correlate my panic attacks with increased stressors at home & work. I think for me the answer is to run away to a island somewhere -alone- and paint coconuts for a living...

    Hope you find what works for you. Try to set aside time for yourself to just read and or relax without others making demands upon you (at home esp) That helps me a lot, sometimes you just have to say "no" and then hide out...I think us being care givers seems to be a green light for family, friends and even perfect strangers feel ok asking for favors, help and advice. It gets overwhelming, take care.
    Yes I too have struggled with anxiety sense nursing school. Ms.piggy your story reminded me of my first flight when I thought the arm rest separating me and the guy sitting next to me was down. starting up into the sky, grabbed with both hands and squeezed on my right an arm rest, on my left the guy sitting next to me his leg. I realized at once what I had done but was so scared I couldn't let go. after we were up in the air I removed my hand and apologized profusely, he said hay No problem, but I was so embarrasses:uhoh21:

    I have had panic attacks and in general have anxiety, trouble sleeping ect...
    before and during most shifts I am quite anxious. I take xanax 0.5 mg two to three times a day. I try not to take it before work because it makes me sleepy, so usually vary anxious at work. I agree you should go see someone, its nothing to be ashamed of. It seems there are a lot of nurses that are in the same boat as we are, his alone makes me feel better.