#128: Worry and anxietySep 16, 2021
FROM THIS SHOW:
Did you know that people who experience manic-depressive symptoms are very likely to experience life-impacting anxieties whether or not you are going through an episode of bipolar? Most people will tell you that this familiar and scary sensation of anxieties is far worse than the actual feelings your diagnosis of bipolar can give you.
Depending on whether or not you experience excessive worries, phobias (avoiding something because it feels unbearable, even when there is no logical reason to believe so), or panic attacks when you are not in a depressed or mixed state of bipolar means you likely have a separate anxiety disorder. Otherwise, you would normally only feel this pain set in when you’re depressed or in a “dysphoric” mixed state of depression and mania.
Maybe you know that intense and prolonged anxiety has been your “default” emotional response to stress for longer than you’ve experienced manic depression, living inside a mind and body crippled by impairments isn’t something you have to fear forever—IF you seek out help for this and train yourself on techniques that bring down worry to a manageable human level.
You don’t want to miss today’s discussion!
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Medical treatments for chronic or acute anxiety must be handled by someone trained in manic depressive interactions with anti-anxiety medications. Otherwise there is a high risk that you will be made even more uncomfortable. ALWAYS communicate quickly with your doctor team for guidance about a treatment becoming counterproductive to your goals.
Chronic worry and anxiety can be brought down to manageable levels without medication, but seeking help is never something to be ashamed of. Crisis-intensity symptoms shut down your day-to-day functioning and overall health, so treat anxiety just as seriously as you would your bipolar diagnosis.
New classes of prescription drugs are coming out that help the person lower their upper limit of anxiety-pain and the duration of anxious symptoms. But learning natural interventions, such as self-guided breath work will do wonders to get your anxiety back under control, quickly.
Lifer Discussion Guide
Use the questions in today’s Lifer Guide to assist you over any hurdles you may have to clear as you address your mental health. These are special conversations!
“Lifers” are people who have unwavering faithfulness. This assures you that they’ll stick by you through all the highs and lows that are normal for a life with mental health challenges. If you haven’t nominated a lifelong family member or friend as part of your non-medical support team, what are you waiting for? :-)
1) What’s the earliest memory you have of being worried to the point of avoiding doing what you had to do, or was asked to do that day?
2) What bothers you most about having to get through your responsibilities with anxiety and bipolar symptoms?
3) How could we flip that around from something that bothers you and causes you extreme distress, into something that we can celebrate about you and how strong you are to keep going? / What would you tell yourself back in that earliest memory of your anxiety being overwhelming, knowing what you know now?
4) Where could we look for someone, or some online resource to help you with learning natural skills like breathing regulation for helping you cope when you get anxious? / Does your hospital or health care provider offer any services like classes for this?
Join the Tribe!
Once you’ve had a chance to talk or journal about these things you might have a question from this episode. If so, make sure you head on over to The Bipolar Now Podcast Group on Facebook! There’s quite a few people over there who are also taking a new step in their mental health. And we’d love for you to share your story with us when you’re ready. So don’t miss out!