Anxiety - A Brilliant Personal Description of Hell

“Anxiety is love’s greatest killer… It makes others feel as you might when a drowning man holds on to you.”
Anaïs Nin

This is a raw first-hand experience of an individual with a severe chronic anxiety disorder or rather just about every symptom of anxiety you could name. Though he does not mention DP and DR he touches upon just about every symptom I have had since childhood. This is a Hell in and of itself. A constant state of anxiety wears you down, and no you can’t “snap out of it.”

Read the entire article HERE.

Surviving Anxiety
“I’ve tried therapy, drugs, and booze. Here’s how I came to terms with the nation's most common mental illness.”
Scott Stossel
Dec 22 2013, 9:25 PM ET
The Atlantic

“I wish I could say that my anxiety is a recent development, or that it is limited to public speaking. It’s not. My wedding was accompanied by sweating so torrential that it soaked through my clothes and by shakes so severe that I had to lean on my bride at the altar, so as not to collapse. At the birth of our first child, the nurses had to briefly stop ministering to my wife, who was in the throes of labor, to attend to me as I turned pale and keeled over. I’ve abandoned dates; walked out of exams; and had breakdowns during job interviews, plane flights, train trips, and car rides, and simply walking down the street. On ordinary days, doing ordinary things—reading a book, lying in bed, talking on the phone, sitting in a meeting, playing tennis—I have thousands of times been stricken by a pervasive sense of existential dread and been beset by nausea, vertigo, shaking, and a panoply of other physical symptoms. In these instances, I have sometimes been convinced that death, or something somehow worse, was imminent.

Even when not actively afflicted by such acute episodes, I am buffeted by worry: about my health and my family members’ health; about finances; about work; about the rattle in my car and the dripping in my basement; about the encroachment of old age and the inevitability of death; about everything and nothing. Sometimes this worry gets transmuted into low-grade physical discomfort—stomachaches, headaches, dizziness, pains in my arms and legs—or a general malaise, as though I have mononucleosis or the flu. At various times, I have developed anxiety-induced difficulties breathing, swallowing, even walking; these difficulties then become obsessions, consuming all of my thinking.”

Severe Chronic Anxiety Can Be Deadly

Here is an article that breaks my heart. No one truly understand the devastating, destructive power of severe chronic anxiety; I know this feeling, I live with this feeling, and finally it is breaking into mainstream awareness thanks to the Andrew Kukes Foundation For Social Anxiety. (Visit this link to this desperately needed organization.)

I need only give the title of a recent Detroit Free Press article on this foundation, created in memory of Andrew Kukes who committed suicide as a young man after having lived his entire, brief, life with social anxiety; chronic social anxiety can kill.

Anxiety disorder takes a son away forever
By Kristen Jordan Shamus Detroit Free Press Columnist
August 25, 2012

Maybe you felt it at your wedding, minutes before you stood in front of family and friends to profess your love.
Maybe it hit you just as you were about to give a big presentation at work or before an athletic competition.
Most of us have felt anxiety. It's that pit-in-the stomach panic that takes over just before you have to do something big.

But imagine if you felt that way all the time. Every time you had to speak to someone. Every time you went anywhere. Every time you did anything.

That's how it was for Andrew Kukes. Andrew had social anxiety disorder, an often misdiagnosed, little-understood condition that affects as many as 15 million Americans.

For years, he struggled to find a name for what plagued him. His family tried to help, sending him to specialist after specialist before finally learning what was wrong. But by then, Andrew had sunk into a deep depression.
"My phone rang one day, and it was Andy's older brother, and he said he'd found him and that Andy had killed himself," said his father, Jeff Kukes. "It still haunts us today; we could not find help for Andy."

See the full article at: The Detroit Free Press, thanks to Kristen Jordan Shamus Read More...

"Anti-Anxiety Circuit" in the Brain

In the market for a new, functioning amygdala. Will consider any offer. Price negotiable.

Scientists discover anti-anxiety circuit in brain region considered the seat of fear
March 9, 2011

“Stimulation of a distinct brain circuit that lies within a brain structure typically associated with fearfulness produces the opposite effect: Its activity, instead of triggering or increasing anxiety, counters it.

That's the finding in a paper by Stanford University School of Medicine researchers to be published online March 9 in Nature. In the study, Karl Deisseroth, MD, PhD, and his colleagues employed a mouse model to show that stimulating activity exclusively in this circuit enhances animals' willingness to take risks, while inhibiting its activity renders them more risk-averse. This discovery could lead to new treatments for anxiety disorders, said Deisseroth, an associate professor of bioengineering and of psychiatry and behavioral science.”

Read the complete article HERE. We’re not just talking “brain chemistry” but brain circuitry. One more step in understanding the most complex organ in the body.