Friday, November 19, 2010

Breaking Out of Fight or Flight Moments

As promised I am following up on my last post about Re-Defining Failure in regards to the subject of being stuck in the state of mind where we feel that we are struggling at simply surviving the moment let alone planning for the possible pitfalls of any long term goals which  would be like concerning yourself to perfect your breast stroke while being sucked out to sea in a rip tide. 

My heart aches for those of us stuck in this horrible state of mind.  I suggest if you are please read my post titled Positive Affirmation in which I spoke a lot about the tools I used surviving moment to moment during my stay in the hospital to detox and it is such a shame that our brains can get stuck in this fight or flight mode like it does and finding that off switch can be extremely difficult.  I know that my mind was stuck in this mode for years without mercy or any sign of letting up which is what lead to my substance abuse and subsequent addiction.  I know it is much easier to write it then to actually do it, but if you are in this mindset and have not seen a Doctor it is imperative that you do and find a treatment that works for you, identify and be wary of your triggers. Instant Panic Relief Techniques comes highly recommended from it's users and does address coping techniques as well as a lot of data regarding triggers which is key in how to avoid the attack in the first place. I know what just took me ten seconds to write may take years to accomplish so I do not mean to over simplify it at all nor am I trying to discourage those who have recently started treatment and just honed in on the use of the word “years”.  Every aspect of anxiety for each individual is different, so treatment of this disorder may be as simple as your first prescription drug bringing relief, to your struggle not being a lifelong one but rather just a small chapter in your journey through life.   Whatever the case may be I truly hope you are able to get out of the moment to moment survival and get to the point where you can begin to look long term again.

With my particular anxiety falling into the category of Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) stemming from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder the way it was treated was slightly different than say someone who has a sudden onset of Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD) or one of the countless other forms  that exist but I can tell you each treatment is very different and varies quite a bit and although some General Practitioner Physicians are quite knowledgeable about the different treatments out there a specialist (often the one’s with couches) are really the best way to go in finding the right treatment that works for you.

I'll share a bit about my story which may be helpful especially if it sounds familiar and the treatment you receive is not as helpful as you would like then you may want to seek out or at least learn about other treatment options and providers available to you. As I stated previously my anxiety stems from PTSD which I got following an abduction experience as a young teen.  Some of the specific events that took place during the abduction I have been told is what triggered the PTSD and follow on anxiety/panic.  So over the years of being treated for my disorder some if not most of the treatment providers I have seen assume that I have unresolved issues and that the best form of treatment for me is to address the root cause rather than the panic which some say is a symptom rather than the disease. 

Again, I am not a Doctor nor in the Mental Health Field but simply stating my opinion and I am able to tell what helps me and what does not.  But if I am going to talk about my disorder with a professional then I prefer to talk about my feelings or needs today as an adult and my day to day struggles that I have now rather than focus on one event over and over in hopes that someday my episodes will suddenly cease, don’t get me wrong that would be wonderful but I think it would have taken place by now, and the treatment I currently receive is geared like this and as the disorder is a chemical imbalance in the brain it is the imbalance that through pharmaceuticals and lifestyle changes we focus on correcting and if I need to talk about what took place when I was a kid then great, I could do so if I wanted but is far from my only option to help get me out of  the fight or flight state of mind and back in control of my life

Thank you for reading and as always I hope that somebody finds any of this content helpful and please feel free to leave feedback or questions.


Anonymous said...

Does not matter when you get treatment. The key is you recognize it and do something about it. Don't expect immediate results. It takes time to heal. Whatever happens keeping hanging in there and it will get better I promise.

AJ said...

Thank you for the encouragement, it is always appreciated!