Psychiatry & Psychology--General/anxiety

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Question
Hi, my name is Dusan and i am 24 years old. I had problems with depression and anxety for a very long time, since i was about 18 y.o. My depression ended last year but the anxiety is still here. If i had to describe the feeling i would say it is very uncomfortable chest tightness, like a stage fright. I am feeling this 24 hours a week, non stop except when i am sleeping, for over 5 years. Sometimes it is stronger for example when i am going on an exam or when i am describing it, like right now. Though all these years i was using all kinds of medications, going to therapy, and in a mental hospital for a month  but nothing helped, not a tiny bit.
I assume it is hard to figure from this what is going on with me, but ill just ask do you know what can it be that i am feeling this 24 hours a day?

Answer
Hello,

To help you put my answer in context, I am a psychoanalyst. So, from my perspective, the anxiety and depression have been generated from some relational or situational experience that left you fearful, sad, etc. Yes, there are biochemical components to each but in my experience, there are also historical events that trigger these states.

You are so right when you say it is difficult (I would say close to impossible) to figure out what is the heart of this problem given a short, two-paragraph history. However, the good news is that the answer is already inside of you. What I believe would be most helpful for you would be to seek out an analyst or analytically-inclined psychotherapist to explore with you your relational and experiential history and your feeling states that accompany these events. Within this relationship you will both explore what has been going on to cause this set of issues.

For our purposes, I would ask you to think about what was happening around the age of 18 that was significant to you. What might be associated with the development of the depression and anxiety? You mention that nothing helped you but you report that the depression has resolved. I would like to know how you think the depression got better. Are you still on antidepressants or was there something else that also helped?

Currently, it sounds like you are now suffering from generalized anxiety. Are you currently taking any anti-anxiety meds? Anxiety is very difficult to live with, so I empathize with you It seems you are very curious about how this might have started, how to deal with it now and how to work to resolve it. Please think about some of the questions I have posed here and feel free to write again. In the meantime, consider seriously seeking the help of a psychoanalyst. I realize this type of treatment takes much longer but trust me, it works...and works in a way that actually changes the way the mind AND the brain works. Take a look at the New York Times Magazine article:
http://www.nytimes.com/2015/06/28/magazine/tell-it-about-your-mother.html?_r=0an, depression,

Psychiatry & Psychology--General

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Jacquelynn Cunliffe

Expertise

I would like to answer under the category of Psychiatry and Psychology. However, I would like to see a separate category for Psychotherapy/Psychoanalysis. I do not answer questions about medications as I do not prescribe. My expertise is in psychotherapeutic treatment.

Experience

I am a psychotherapist and psychoanalyst who specializes in the treatment of mental health issues caused by childhood trauma, domestic abuse, eating disorders, relationship difficulties, and a wide variety of psychological disorders. The kind of therapy I do is often referred to as deep therapy, talk therapy, or psychoanalytic therapy. Please note that I am not against medications and when managed well, medication can be an adjunct to psychotherapy intervention. I think it is important for the public to realize that psychodynamic or psychoanalytic psychotherapy DOESmake changes not only in people's minds but those changes can also be detected in their brain structure. Psychotherapy and psychoanalysis are powerful interventions to help people change their lives from the inside out.

Organizations
American Psychoanalytic Association American Psychiatric Nurse Association Member of Psychoanalytic Center of Philadelphia Member of National Eating Disorder Association

Education/Credentials
Ph.D.-University of Pennsylvania, Psychology and Education, Division of Human Development M.S.N. and R.N.-B.C. Board Certified Nurse in Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing. 2-Year Adult Psychotherapy Program graduate 2-Year Child Psychotherapy Graduate Current: Candidate in Psychoanalytic Training at the Psychoanalytic Center of Philadelphia

Past/Present Clients
I have worked with clients who have experienced significant childhood traumas. These patients come with a variety of mental health issues, including anxiety, depression, suicidal ideations, relationship difficulties and diagnoses such as Personality Disorders, Adjustment Disorders, and, though rarely, Dissociative Identity Disorder (formerly multiple Personality Disorder)

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