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#91 fishinghat

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Posted 04 March 2021 - 05:22 PM

Not a problem. Any time.

 

Good luck


#92 viola639

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Posted 05 March 2021 - 04:49 PM

Woke up today morning at 5 with body burning, literally hot (36F outside) and i had to take a walk to calm down. Cried twice today, really emotional. I just wish this would stop. My mind feels so confused and cloudy :(, will i get clarity any time soon. 


#93 fishinghat

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Posted 06 March 2021 - 09:22 AM

You went back on your original brand and dose about 10 days ago, right?


#94 viola639

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Posted 07 March 2021 - 03:15 PM

15 days now counting fishinghat :(. I don't know what to do, could this be an allergic reaction to cymbalta ? 

Also, i had a window of openness yesterday morning, which quickly went away :/. I had acid reflux and took famotidine. 

 

Now i'm clueless as to what to do, my next doctor appointment is on march 11, wherein i can ask him about switching to Lexapro or Zoloft. But right now, i have no other options, just getting needier and needier.

 

I saw @frog & polly had similar problems with breathing ocd, did it ever go away for them, what did they do to cope up. Do you remember ? At this point i'm just grasping at straws. 


#95 fishinghat

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Posted 07 March 2021 - 06:20 PM

That brief window of openness is a sign that you are starting to stabilize. Having said that, at this rate it may take a month or two and that would not be fun. 

 

Any kind of stomach issue will significantly make your symptoms worse. 

 

As far as the breathing issue I think one of them got some relief from propranolol. Could be wrong but I am sure they will chime in and make some suggestions. 


#96 viola639

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Posted 08 March 2021 - 01:39 PM

Thank you fishinghat, i just hope this settles soon. This impending doom kind of feeling i have is not fun :(


#97 fishinghat

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Posted 08 March 2021 - 03:58 PM

I fully understand. I had a severe case of that during my withdrawal. 9 months of hiding in a closet screaming in fear. God bless my poor wife. What an angel. The drs tried 6 different meds to help and it wasn't until the 6th one that I found some relief. 


#98 viola639

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Posted 08 March 2021 - 05:49 PM

I'm really sorry you had to go through that fishinghat, i really truly am :(. This whole thing sucks, i'm glad u are feeling better now. 

I just want some sort of relief from this shortness of breath and the anxiety cycle that arises because of me thinking constantly about it. 


#99 fishinghat

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Posted 08 March 2021 - 06:24 PM

Neither frog or Mxpro responded I see. I will try to look at their posts tomorrow and see what they did.


#100 invalidusername

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Posted 08 March 2021 - 06:52 PM

Apologies for my recent silence on this thread - Hat seems to habe thing under control and I was just about keeping up with the rest of the forum. 
 
Vagus nerve stimulation is something that I never got around to testing, but it is on my to-do list. I have a library of papers about it and have bought a TENS machine and small electrode clips which I can attach to the ear lobe to stimulate the nerve. It is all about finding the right frequency and intensity to activate the nerve to the correct level.
 
There are so many members that have had this "breathing OCD" you speak of, but names escape me. Hat - can you remember the girl who was eastern european way who had something similar to viola? Last we heard she was get things sorted with her father med-wise whilst she was trying to maintain her studies. That would be a great read for Viola.
 
Maybe I will have a look through the member list, I am sure I will find it. But I really think it would help our poor Viola here.
 
Even I had it early on. It is such a common thing. It is because you think about it and can't accept that it is automated. I know it sounds crazy, but at these times you feel that you need to "think" to breathe or you just won't do it, but your brain DOES. This is why people pass out - it is so the brain can take over and make you calm. 
 
When I had my car accident - 70mph into a freeway barrier, I remember thinking to myself "this is going to bloody hurt" and I blacked out before I hit anything. The brain knows and does what its supposed to do.
 
There was nothing I could do - I was a race driver back in the day and can get myself out of most skids etc, but 70mph hitting a spill of gas - no-one can get out of that!
 
I really feel for you Viola and it will go. Nothing stays the same. It can't rain all the time.....

#101 invalidusername

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Posted 08 March 2021 - 06:55 PM

Found it...

 

PrincessNutella (formely Ozgun)

 

Have a read Viola;

 

https://www.cymbalta...ith-sertraline/


#102 viola639

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Posted 08 March 2021 - 07:34 PM

Thank you IUN :), that gave me a lot of information. A small question about this, did PrincessNutella use propanolol for shortness of breath ? Did it actually help her. 

 

My chest is feeling so tight and nose stuffy. I don't know if there is an end to this. Also a teeny bit suicidal since 4 days, don't know why early morning makes me feel this way. When i went googling ways to die, that's when i had to put a stop to it :(

 

I'm really sorry about your accident :(, that must have been scary as hell. 


#103 invalidusername

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Posted 08 March 2021 - 09:01 PM

Viola - stick with us, and as difficult as it is to see your way through this, there IS an end. I too have been at that very point of Googling painless ways to die. But this is not you. It is a broken brainium! 

 

What you have is a symptom of the illness. If you have a cold, you have a snotbox that won't stop, but you don't worry because you know it will not last forever. This is no different. It is a symptom of what you are going through.

 

The accident wasn't very nice. Was in a mini coma for 3 days and woke up surrounded by weeping family. But I am here to live the tale... as Hat is to tell of his horrific brush with the worst fear imaginable. You will follow.... 


#104 viola639

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Posted 08 March 2021 - 09:07 PM

Thank you IUN, i'm trying hard to stick around, praying to god is the only one that makes sense to me now. 

 

The fact that you are here to tell your story and be here for all of us shows the mental strength involved in it. You are really strong and i hope i'm even minutely as strong as you. 


#105 frog

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Posted 09 March 2021 - 01:49 PM

Hi Viola,

Sorry for the delay. I'm not checking here as often as I used to. 

 

I've had breathing things to some degree the whole time since I stopped Cymbalta :( I'm fairly certain for me at least that's its a physical manifestation of experiencing stress and anxiety. The more nervous or stressed or overwhelmed I feel the tighter my chest becomes until I'm noticing that I'm having trouble breathing and then I start to get freaked out by it. Good times.

 

A few things that help me, in no particular order: remembering that I'm not dying and this is all related to stress and anxiety; taking deep slow breaths using my diaphragm in those moments to try to lower the stress and anxiety and by extension relax the chest muscles a bit; l-theanine. The L-theanine had the most dramatic effect on the breathing. Before I started taking it my chest was really tight all day every day. Now I can definitely still sense tightness there but it's much lower and less obstructive so I can generally ignore it unless I'm experiencing something stressful. The tightness is most pronounced when I lie down and it can be more challenging to breathe when I'm in bed. I think it contributes greatly to my bad sleep and lack of restfulness when I wake up and is the reason I have to take Seroquel to fall asleep every night otherwise I would be wide awake all night. Anywho, L-theanine has shown in some research that it helps to reduce anxiety as well as prevent your blood pressure from rising when you're under stress, so I think that's why it has helped me so much. 


#106 viola639

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Posted 09 March 2021 - 02:19 PM

Thank you frog, i really appreciate your response. I'm worried to L-theanine and maybe experience serotonin syndrome (because of being on cymbalta now). But today, I'll start with taking one 100mg dose and see where it takes me. 

 

My tightness seems to be much pronounced when i'm sitting :( and also this obsession i have with checking  that i can breathe properly is killing me :(


#107 frog

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Posted 10 March 2021 - 03:36 PM

If you consider that the tightness is coming from muscles in that area literally being tense and tight then it makes sense that certain positions make it worse/better. 

 

I saw a new PT yesterday for an unrelated issue related to muscle tension and she really stressed the importance of diaphragmatic breathing for it to relax the muscle. I brought up the chest tightness and she said it's likely it would help for that also. The diaphragm is a muscle that sits below the lungs. I think it stands to reason that if you're breathing too fast or are feeling tense and holding your breath in that the diaphragm will also tense up and is not moving away sufficiently from your lungs to give them room to expand. Breathing intentionally through your belly will push the diaphragm down away from your lungs as well as hopefully relaxing the muscle itself which should help relieve that pressure. 

 

When I thought about it, it kind of fits the puzzle? In the first months after Cymbalta I was having frequent panic attacks which came with hyperventilation the whole nine yards. The stress and anxiety likely resulted in holding a lot of physical tension throughout my body and now I'm just a little "stuck" in that cycle. 

 

In any case it's an easy noninvasive thing to try. You could start by doing some diaphragmatic breathing first thing in the morning and right before bed or anytime in the day that you feel the tension and pressure. 

 

As for the l-theanine I definitely understand the hesitation. I think 100mg is a good place to start. Maybe FH can figure out how long it lasts in your system? So you can be sure to avoid any potential buildup. From what I saw briefly it seems like it would be gone within 24 hours, but it's hard to tell. There's always so much conflicting information when it comes to supplements 


#108 fishinghat

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Posted 10 March 2021 - 06:21 PM

The half life of L-Theanine ranges from 60 to 75 minutes.

 

As far as the chest tightness/breathing difficulties there are two things I know of associated with stress that can trigger it.

 

High adrenaline levels and respiratory acidosis (see the ebook for an explanation).


#109 viola639

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Posted 10 March 2021 - 08:13 PM

@frog thank you :), i did try one 100mg l-theanine (suntheanine brand) yesterday evening, seems to calm the chatter down a bit, it also makes me drowsy, a tiny headache and a bit of out of everything feeling. I don't know if you feel this, do you think this will go away in time ? Also, sleep at night was a bit weird, i felt as if i was sleeping, but still awake, i don't know how to describe that feeling (i was very tired, but extremely relaxed, yet awake). 

 

Also i'm extremely sorry you went through the panic attacks, i know how that is. It makes me powerless, i feel weak and my stomach and chest feel like i'm holding so much sadness. 

 

@fishinghat thank you :), i'm not sure about respiratory acidosis (but my tummy is a bit acidic with acid reflux :(). Also high adrenaline levels, it has been 3 weeks since i went back to old brand, don't know how long this would take to settle. 


#110 fishinghat

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Posted 11 March 2021 - 10:20 AM

After 3 weeks I am concerned. There is no research on antidepressant reinstatement of a higher dose that I have been able to find so all my comments are subjective and just based on what I have seen in members. I would say the great majority of member have usually stabilized by now if they were going to stabilize. Unluckily this does happen some times. Members have went ahead and weaned because they felt like they were suffering already, some have held out longer, some lean on supplements and others simply lean on other prescription meds. A tough call.

 

Respiratory acidosis 
Respiratory acidosis develops when air inhaled into and exhaled from the lungs does not get adequately exchanged between the carbon dioxide from the body for oxygen from the air. During periods of high stress people often hyperventilate. This hyperventilation is a fast respiratory rate but shallow. This leads to high CO2 levels especially in the lower parts of the lungs. These high CO2 levels cause a concurrent high CO2 levels in the blood which converts to carbonic acid and low blood pH. Blood with a low pH does not carry oxygen as well and results in a condition called hypercapnia. 
 
The narrow pH range for normal function is between 7.35 and 7.45. 
 
Acidemia, which is highly acidic blood, occurs when pH of the blood is lower than 7.35. 
 
Respiratory acidosis occurs when breathing out does not get rid of enough CO2. The increased CO2 that remains results in an acidic state. 
 
Doctors refer to the increased CO2 level in the bloodstream occurring as a result of respiratory acidosis as hypercapnia. 
 
Symptoms can include: 
⦁ headaches 
⦁ memory loss 
⦁ sleep disturbance 
⦁ anxiety and personality changes 
⦁ confusion 
⦁ drowsiness 
⦁ stupor 
⦁ muscle jerking 
⦁ reduced heart muscle function 
⦁ disturbances in heart rhythm, producing arrhythmias 
⦁ a drop in blood pressure 
 
A person can prevent the onset of respiratory acidosis by maintaining healthy lung function (eg. breathing exercises) 

#111 frog

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Posted 11 March 2021 - 12:53 PM

I haven't really experienced any negative side effects from the l theanine at all. But everyone is different so who who really knows. Sometimes I find that any new medication/supplement/whatever I introduce makes me more anxious, searching for problems or side effects and as I get used to how I feel on it anxiety and side effects fall away. Could be just me though. I do take it twice a day every day and I feel like it took at least a week or two to have a noticeable and persistent calming effect. If the side effects are more harmful than helpful for you though I would say just ditch it. 

 

Edited to add, I've been doing the diaphragmatic breathing for a couple of days morning and night now. It is helping a bit. Every little bit helps :)

 

Here are the instructions I got from my PT:

 

Position: Lie face up on the floor (I use my bed) with knees bent. Put a hand on your lower belly (elbow touching the floor/bed) and the other hand on your upper chest (elbow touching the floor/bed). This is just to help monitor that you're breathing with your belly and not your chest.

 

Method: Breathe in through your nose and fill your lower lungs with air. This causes your abdomen to rise as if blowing up a balloon. Let the tummy rise forward, out to the sides, lower back rounds, and the pelvic floor relaxes. 

 

Breathe out of your mouth or nose letting air "fall out." Let your abdomen and lower ribcage begin to fall with your breath. As you breathe and let belly/pelvis/back expand, count your breath in and out making it as long as possible but even (same count in as out). Wait until you feel the need to take another breath naturally, don't rush. But the amount of time between breaths isn't that critical. 

 

Continue this rhythm of breathing in through the nose and out through the mouth, making sure that the only motion that occurs during the breathing is in the lower ribs and abdomen (not in the chest).

 

I find that after a few minutes of doing it the counts become longer and everything feels more even and slower, more relaxed. My chest feels less tight. There's definitely still some tightness in my upper body but I was expecting it to take at least a week or two of sustained breathing practice to see continued relaxation of all the muscle. 

 

I've tried meditation over the past year as another means of relaxation and mindfulness but it just didn't really stick/work for me. In contrast I find this breathing exercise almost a bit meditative. It takes you out of your head as you focus on what you're doing and it's actually quite peaceful. 

 

My last thought on the matter is that none of these things would have made a lick of difference to me in the state I was in over a year ago. At that time it was kind of like... pouring a bucket of water into a house that's on fire, you know? Just wasn't nearly enough. All of these little things help now that the thick of the withdrawal naturally passed over with time. I just don't want you to feel like there's something wrong with you if things aren't helping or not working. For me it just took a lot of time to get here, a lot of tears, a lot of frustration, and a kind therapist. FH and IUN are both super helpful with the logistical side of things and I'm SO thankful for them and this forum because it saved me from unnecessarily going on another SSRI or any other challenging medications. That was the right path for me. Hopefully soon you will figure out the right path for you too :)


#112 viola639

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Posted 11 March 2021 - 08:07 PM

@fishinghat thank you so much for that research :), i really read through all of that and am meeting with Gynaec tomorrow to see what this is all about. Also, spoke to my psychiatrist today, he mentioned it could just be GERD and i'm panicking over it. 

 

@frog, thank you so much :), i'll continue to have the l-theanine. The sleepiness seems to be less, when taken with food. I tried taking it on empty stomach and that caused these issues. With food, it seems to be better. What you said totally makes sense. No matter what advice i seem to get from family members, these initial days seem to be unbearable, unable to deal with. 

 

Those instructions from the PT are really helpful @frog, thank you so much <3. I'm going to try them today evening. 

 

Starting therapy next week, i'm hoping that helps. 


#113 invalidusername

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Posted 14 March 2021 - 08:38 AM

Thank you for your lovely words Frog - I am touched. Hat and myself do what we can...as do you... as we all fight for the same cause; we cannot bear to see people suffering needlessly through these things. I am feeling properly rotten today - caused simply by overdoing it. I had a call out yesterday, and I lost it with the client. She was standing over my shoulder telling me how to do my job. Normally, I can just brush these things off. I am so so slow to anger, but after all that has gone on, I couldn't cope. I told her either she leaves the room, or I do. Fortunately, she saw sense and I was able to complete the work.

 

@viola - there is no hard and fast rule about whether to take suntheanine with or without food, but it seems to work better one way or the other in most cases. It is best to try and see which works best for you. Unfortunately, it is one of those supplements which does not warrant the sort of funding that allows for the sort of research that would help the situation. 

 

Much like Hat, after three weeks, I would expect things to be levels out by now. But one thing for sure that there is a direct link between stress and acid reflux. Stress gives more anxiety and in turn adrenal problems, which can cause put lipid function out of whack. This will then result in the imbalance of ph in the stomach/GI system, thus resulting in the reflux/GERD. In a lot of cases this does dissipate on its own unless there is a contributory factor such as a hiatus hernia. But you should find this calms with the stress relief. Frog has given you a good start - as she says, every little helps. 

 

It is a long row to hoe, which a lot of us really understand, which is why we are here for you... just keep going, keep posting, and we will do all we can.

 

IUN 


#114 viola639

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Posted 26 March 2021 - 07:37 PM

@iun, @hat and @frog, just wanted to come by here and tell you guys about my progress. Intense panic from breathing has lessened. Still a bit panicky, but self managing. I found out i have gerd and gastritis. I started running recently and that seems to have triggered it even more. This caused low blood co2 levels (18 for me). That is what caused all the breathlessness. With degly licorice, mastic gum, giving up caffeine and smaller meals, things seem to be manageable. 

 

Going on a completely alkaline plant based diet, to reverse this. I hope people who have gerd and gastritis can benefit from this. Anxiety tends to exacerbate it, but usually eating good helps a lot. Also taking hcl for low stomach acid, this is a must for people who can't digest protein. 

 

Working with a functional med doc, so he also found i have the mthfr mutation, inability to process b12 unless it is methylated. This might be the core reason for all of my anxiety :(. I wish initially before being put on cymbalta, the doc would have tested for this. 


#115 fishinghat

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Posted 27 March 2021 - 07:13 AM

There are a number of nutrients that can contribute/cause chronic anxiety/depression but drs seldom test for them. It is just easier to throw a pill at it.





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