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Feeling panicky?  ADD kicking your ass?


Does this sound like you:  

"I try and try but can't get anything done even with caffeine"
"When I wake up I feel so focused, but then it goes away In a few minutes"
"I feel panicky/overwhelmed most of the time"
"When I'm drawing, I get to a point where I get stuck and can't fix it"
"I have energy to do things, but get frustrated and tired so quickly"

Sound familiar?  Wish more than anything this would stop?  You might benefit from what I've recently learned in my own struggle with high cortisol.

I recently strained my heart.  I was overexerting myself and had a 'ripping' feeling in my chest.  I passed out.  The feeling leading up to this was like electric shock running through my body.  This was the most major medical event in my life, and I knew something had to change.

I'm a healthy guy, so this was a huge shock.  After getting checked out by the doctor, I started looking into the root of the problem.  My family has a history of high cortisol.  While you're probably familiar with the more well known serotonin and dopamine, you may not know the 'stress' hormone Cortisol.  I highly encourage you to read the wiki article I pasted at the top, then skip down to the section that explains the medical problems long term exposure to high levels of Cortisol can cause.

I myself have every single symptom except muscle deterioration - well, that's what I thought until I had my little heart event.

These are the steps I took (it's been about 7 days, and I've never felt so much better in my life).

1.  I stopped drinking caffeine all together.  After the horrible headaches subsided, this made the second biggest improvement.

2.  I stopped taking my anti depressant and anto anxiety medication.  This was a well researched and educated decision.  My SSRI (selective seratonin reuptake inhibitor) also prevented the normal reuptake of Cortisol.  THIS IS NOT THE RIGHT SOLUTION FOR EVERYONE, AND YOU MUST ASK YOUR DOCTOR IF THIS MIGHT BE A CONTRIBUTING FACTOR BEFORE MAKING ANY CHANGES TO YOUR MEDS.  I did have two dats of severe suicidal thoughts, but it wasn't too hard getting past it as I knew it was the meds.

3.  I started on a regimen of magnesium, niacin, folate (real stuff, not just folic acid, but folic acid will work in a pinch), B stress vitamin combo, flaxseed oil, fish oil, and a combo omega vitamin made of several others.

4.  I started stretching at night before bed (the goal is to flush the excess hormone from your blood.  Water, stretching, and light aerobic exercise is second only to removing caffeine in importance).

5.  Started making up my sleep debt.  I've been taking it as easy as possible,  and sleeping anytime I can.  I've been getting about 14hours of sleep a day.  I've been much more tired since repaying my sleep debt, and my body is healing quickly.

6.  I haven't given up all my vices, but the desire to use my vaporizer is very reduced.  When making any major change in your life to address a medical issue, it's important not to give up ever bad habit you have.  Doing too much at once can be overwhelming.  Give yourself an out if you need it.  

I hope if anyone who has struggled with this like I have might finally get some relief after reading this journal.

Good luck, and feel better!
Viewed: 34 times
Added: 3 years, 3 months ago
3 years, 3 months ago
summarizing the above journal:

"you have stress. sleep better, eat better, relax more, exercise well, avoid caffeine, don't treat emotional problems with drugs"
3 years, 3 months ago
How many people have heard that sentence and never tried it?

As an artist, you should know the importance of seeing things in a different way to see what's wrong.  I shared my experience and the reasons for what I did so that people might understand the why, and how it might relate to them.
3 years, 3 months ago
Sort of but not quite.
Caffeine doesn't wake me up.
I tend to be delirious most of the day but then get some focus back near bed-time, but doesnt give much time to do stuff.
Panicky alot, yes, but usually from stress, social anxiety or when I remember what I keep forgetting.
My drawing ability is random, it defies prediction or practice, forcing it makes it worse.
I rarely have energy, usually weak & dizzy actually, though on rare occasions I overload and can't sit still.
Anti-depressants made me feel worse (more down & disinterested,  foul moods).

I get random pains all over, usually just nuisances but a few times so bad i considered ending it.
It's been half my life, doctors find stuff in tests but it randomly changes.
3 years, 3 months ago
What you said about memory really made me pay attention.  I have serious memory issues, or had...it's getting better now.  My reason was cortisol causing me to only form 'flash bulb' memories.  These don't convert to long term well at all.  I generally have no sense of time beyond a week or so (everything else I have to guess at...or again, did.).

Out of curiosity, are the pains kinda itchy, sharp, or dull ache?  Itch and ache is along the lines of this, sharp is way off base and must have another cause.

The anti depressants not working at all - that's a big sign (I'm no doctor, so I'm just going off what I learned.).  The delirium is...that's worrying.

Man, you've got a bunch going on...and some of it seems diametrically opposed to other conditions you're experiencing.  I wonder if there isn't a low neurotransmitter...or blockage...or...wow, your situation is seriously complicated.  Is there anything the doctors keep finding?  Do you have to take pain meds regularly?  I just can't see a pattern in what's happening with you that screams 'this is it".
3 years, 3 months ago
Seems I have most of those symptoms of high cortisol, however some are directly the opposite, like I am steadily loosing weight & getting dangerously close to emaciated, plus most of this started when i was still a child.
Though these symptoms are close to several other things related to stress, toxic chemical exposure & immune system disorders.
So if it does having something to do with cortisol, could be more a symptom than a cause.

Memory is just generally failing, there's no 'flashbulbing'.  I just forget things - sometimes obvious daily life things like forgetting about a meal in the middle preparing it, and occasionally massive chunks of knowledge of people i know very well or abilities just dissapear for a random amount of time.

Pains vary, like sharp stabbing pains, burning aching, thobbing headaches, frequently hurt neck & shoulders & arms, odd cramping pains in the hip & legs, chest pains, randomly inflamed joints, etc.

The last 9 or so months I've been more than a little ill about 75% of the time, everything was slowly getting worse but picking up some speed.
3 years, 3 months ago
Fish oil, eh?

Let me know when you start getting Inhuman powers!

3 years, 3 months ago
I already have them!
3 years, 3 months ago
Sending a S.H.I.E.L.D. team in now.  Brace for extraction!

3 years, 3 months ago
How does the stretch part work? Do I need one of those medieval racks?

3 years, 3 months ago

Concentrating on the lower back myself.  It seems that stretching that is allowing a better flow through my entire body.  I think of the stretching like opening a blocked pipe.  Find the block, return the flow.  The goal is to get all the water through the pipes and back to start again, if that metaphor makes sense
3 years, 3 months ago
Thanks! I have to start trying that. I have chronic back pain and also the other problem I have mentioned, which I suspect may be somehow related since it involves low blood flow.
3 years, 3 months ago
Do I need to quit alcohol too?
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