Anxiety and Panic Attacks

This time last year, anxiety had me fully in its grips, and had taken over as my worst symptom. I have never been a fan of anxiety, but the anxiety and panic attacks I have experienced since being diagnosed with labyrinthitis were much worse than what I experienced in the past.

In November 2014, my anxiety became so bad, I could not sleep. I talked to my co-worker (read: cried my face off), and she kindly offered to take me to see my GP. I had suffered from anxiety and panic attacks in the past, and was given Ativan before when my anxiety was severe. This visit, my GP gave me a prescription for a handful of Ativan pills to help me in the short term, and also prescribed an antidepressant for the longer term. In the meantime, someone on the Facebook support group for labyrinthitis mentioned acupuncture helped her, so I set out to find an acupuncturist close to home.

Ativan helped me finally sleep that night. What a relief! On November 18, 2014 I went for my acupuncture session. Wow, what a difference it made. Not only was he able to calm me down, but he also helped my balance. I started seeing him twice a week, and booked appointments to use up my benefits until the end of the year. I had tried acupuncture in 2000 for pain from a back injury, but it didn’t work again after the first successful treatment. That was not my experience this time, and I’m so grateful for that. I never ended up taking the antidepressants my GP prescribed because acupuncture was so helpful. My only complaint would be that the effects did not last beyond the day of my treatment.

I’m so glad I had the people from the Facebook support group during that awful time. I honestly do not know how I would have made it through to the other side without the support of others who knew what I was going through. Balance issues are so odd. They affect so much more than your balance, while making you feel like your world will never right itself. I knew from others in the support group that I would not improve unless I was able to get my anxiety under control. I had a therapist, acupuncture, Ativan, more than one book on overcoming anxiety, and the support of others going through the same thing to help me. I’m grateful to be in a much better place now. I am not fully recovered, but I have improved a lot, and anxiety is not playing a feature role any longer.

8 thoughts on “Anxiety and Panic Attacks

  1. I love that someone made a blogs aboit vestibular disorders. I haven’t been right since bppv in july and to this day feel awful. My anxiety has crippled me as im so afraid of the vertigo. Seen 3 specialists but i dont know what do do. Would love aomeone to chat to. Xx aneya

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    • I’m sorry you’ve been having a difficult time because of vertigo and anxiety. I have found great support online. It’s so frustrating when those around us do not understand what we are going through.

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      • Vestibular rehabilitation therapy (VRT). I’m not back to where I was before I got sick, but I’ve improved a lot.

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      • Donyou think your bppv is gone for good? I just would like to know what tests u did and how you felt ok with your diagnosis? Just very afraid.

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      • I did not have bppv; I had damage to my balance system in my left ear most likely caused by a virus. The vestibular physiotherapist I saw agreed with the diagnosis of labyrinthitis given by the ER doctor. I saw an ENT and neurologist as well.

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      • Yes, they all agreed with the diagnosis. Since BPPV is the most common cause of vertigo, that’s the first thing they tested me for, and I did not have it. Then they said I was dizzy because I had ear infections in both ears, and said I should feel better once the infections cleared. When I was still experiencing vertigo after the ear infections cleared, they had me do certain movements, etc. to determine if my vertigo was caused from a problem in my brain, or a problem in my inner ear. They determined it was in my inner ear. Labyrinthitis is a diagnosis of exclusion; there is no test for it, but if you do not get diagnosed with other causes of vertigo, then they diagnose you with it.

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