Depression and Anxiety at an older age

Posted by pjss48 @pjss48, Sep 14, 2018

I am a 70 year old woman who has had depression and anxiety for a long time. It got worse 3 years ago when my husband lost one of his jobs. I panicked and my anxiety increased. I was afraid to do things. like driving. I have arthritis pretty bad and foot problems. I’m a Christian and my faith has helped me. My husband was a pastor and our church closed 3 months ago. We’ve had continual stress. Sometimes I don’t know what to do with myself during the day. I’ve gotten help from several doctors, including a psychiatrist. I also have IBS. I am better. I’m taking trazadone duloxetine, remeron and xanax. Also on osteo biflex, probiotic , bentyl and celebrex. I want to get on Sam e but it may interact with one of my meds. Thanks for listening.

@mamacita

@teresa, Volunteer Mentor, chronic debilitating pain loves to smack us in the face with blows to our self-esteem. Three o'clock and the dishes still sit in the sink? And we call ourselves productive?

Hey, I'm with the rest of you. I am just thankful I have gotten done the few things I have been able to accomplish today. My newest meds are helping me tremendously with the anxiety and depression. All my hormone levels are functional at this pount, and what a difference it makes in my life.

Thank you all for being here and sharing your experience, strength, and hope.

Love and light to you all.

Mamacita Jane

Jump to this post

@mamacita
I’m not depressed but if you’ve ever read my posts you’d know how abhorrent I think the kitchen is. I even hate walking through it to go into the garage or take out the garbage and often go out the front door.
But I only let a few dishes accumulate. I fixed a grilled cheese sandwich for lunch which is equivalent to making a Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter dinner all at once. I’m not sure who’s nuts, y’all for liking to cook or me for not. I have to wash that pan before bedtime. I like a clean kitchen in the morning. Well truth be told, I’d prefer no kitchen at all. Now my office unfortunately is another matter.
Jake

REPLY
@mamacita

@teresa, Volunteer Mentor, chronic debilitating pain loves to smack us in the face with blows to our self-esteem. Three o'clock and the dishes still sit in the sink? And we call ourselves productive?

Hey, I'm with the rest of you. I am just thankful I have gotten done the few things I have been able to accomplish today. My newest meds are helping me tremendously with the anxiety and depression. All my hormone levels are functional at this pount, and what a difference it makes in my life.

Thank you all for being here and sharing your experience, strength, and hope.

Love and light to you all.

Mamacita Jane

Jump to this post

Abused as a teen. A family member abandoned us 10 years ago.Lyme disease then fibro. Just found out three cardiac arteries are severly calcified. Talk about depression? Yep. If it wasn't for God and my hubby I would give up.

REPLY
@mamacita

@teresa, Volunteer Mentor, chronic debilitating pain loves to smack us in the face with blows to our self-esteem. Three o'clock and the dishes still sit in the sink? And we call ourselves productive?

Hey, I'm with the rest of you. I am just thankful I have gotten done the few things I have been able to accomplish today. My newest meds are helping me tremendously with the anxiety and depression. All my hormone levels are functional at this pount, and what a difference it makes in my life.

Thank you all for being here and sharing your experience, strength, and hope.

Love and light to you all.

Mamacita Jane

Jump to this post

@mamacita It's so good to see you posting. Each day is a new day. Those lists we make in our mind or on paper are not set in stone, or at least they shouldn't be. Do what we can, what we feel ready to do, feel gratitude for accomplishing that. And know we will add to that list tomorrow and continue to whittle away at it. And that is okay.
Ginger

REPLY

Dearest Teresa, Volunteer Mentor, thank you. I'm getting there. Genetic testing revealed why I have had such a rough time. It's going to be better. More later. Still in pain. Love and light.

Mamacita Jane

REPLY
@lisalucier

@hopeful33250 – I tried out this "cleaning the kitchen" technique yesterday.

I do have depression and anxiety, but they are fairly well controlled with medication. I'm sure I naturally get to work sometimes doing something during time microwaving, but sometimes not. The idea of being proactive and making a small dent in something – putting laundry in the dryer, cleaning the kitchen sink, tidying the counters – during microwaving is a little uplifter. "I just used that time well and got something accomplished."

I often find chunking tasks – working in little bits, and over time – helps me in getting things done and mentally/emotionally. In grad school, many of the degree programs had comprehensive exams for the entire program as a graduation requirement. This is kind of daunting – studying everything from 2 + years. Some of my friends put it off till the last 2 weeks and were panicked. I started about 6 months out devoting an hour a day to studying for comprehensives, and it really helped me to do a solid review and freed me up from anxiety.

Jump to this post

Lisa, do you get strong anxiety attacks that come and go, as I do? Or is it a constant feeling of just being on edge? I ask because I’m still sorting among the several types of anxiety disorders to decide exactly where I fit. Geeeeez!

REPLY
@stsopoci

I’d like to know more about the bone density issue with lexapro since I take 20mg. I’m 71 and I want my bones to stay strong. Is there some research article I can read?

Jump to this post

Lexapro can be associated with bone density issues but not all have this issue, according to MAYO studies and others. If you exercise, eat right and have good health there seems to be no issue.

REPLY
@annedodrill44

Lisa, do you get strong anxiety attacks that come and go, as I do? Or is it a constant feeling of just being on edge? I ask because I’m still sorting among the several types of anxiety disorders to decide exactly where I fit. Geeeeez!

Jump to this post

@annedodrill44 – I have had times when my anxiety feels like my blood pressure must surely be elevated, and I've had mild chest pain (that is clearly anxiety, not actual heart, though I wondered about the effects on my heart), chest tightness, a really stiff neck and shoulders (more than just a normal "I've been sitting at my desk working for hours" type neck stiffness and ache), feel nauseous, have trouble eating and feel jittery and on edge. It feels terrible, and I imagine what it might be doing to my physical health. This comes and goes, but usually if this is happening, I'm at a fairly constant state of more edginess than normal.

My most recent episode, where I was concerned about having more traffic noise (than my previous home) at certain times of the day in our new home, went on for a couple of months, coming and going, even while on vacation out of state. Ruminating on what was bothering me just made it worse, but I had trouble coming back again and again to ruminating again. I think finally my dosage of 40 mg fluoxetine (Prozac) kicked in (I went on fluoxetine/Prozac in May, then it was upped in July), plus I started realizing how common having some noise outside one's home was at other friends' homes. I'd never even noticed it before till I started paying attention. I also thought a lot about what my mother's chaplain friend said about "radical acceptance" when one is having trouble with worry and anxiety. She also talked about saying, "Good dog," acknowledging an anxiety-provoking thought, then putting it down.

Have you noticed anything that makes your anxiety stronger or makes it decrease?

REPLY
@lisalucier

@annedodrill44 – I have had times when my anxiety feels like my blood pressure must surely be elevated, and I've had mild chest pain (that is clearly anxiety, not actual heart, though I wondered about the effects on my heart), chest tightness, a really stiff neck and shoulders (more than just a normal "I've been sitting at my desk working for hours" type neck stiffness and ache), feel nauseous, have trouble eating and feel jittery and on edge. It feels terrible, and I imagine what it might be doing to my physical health. This comes and goes, but usually if this is happening, I'm at a fairly constant state of more edginess than normal.

My most recent episode, where I was concerned about having more traffic noise (than my previous home) at certain times of the day in our new home, went on for a couple of months, coming and going, even while on vacation out of state. Ruminating on what was bothering me just made it worse, but I had trouble coming back again and again to ruminating again. I think finally my dosage of 40 mg fluoxetine (Prozac) kicked in (I went on fluoxetine/Prozac in May, then it was upped in July), plus I started realizing how common having some noise outside one's home was at other friends' homes. I'd never even noticed it before till I started paying attention. I also thought a lot about what my mother's chaplain friend said about "radical acceptance" when one is having trouble with worry and anxiety. She also talked about saying, "Good dog," acknowledging an anxiety-provoking thought, then putting it down.

Have you noticed anything that makes your anxiety stronger or makes it decrease?

Jump to this post

Thanks, @lisalucier, I know your post was directed to @annedodrill44, but I gained a lot from it as well! "Good dog" and "radical acceptance" sound great.

When I get overwhelmed with anxiety I often just say, "100 years from now what difference will it make?" That helps me as well.

REPLY
@lisalucier

@annedodrill44 – I have had times when my anxiety feels like my blood pressure must surely be elevated, and I've had mild chest pain (that is clearly anxiety, not actual heart, though I wondered about the effects on my heart), chest tightness, a really stiff neck and shoulders (more than just a normal "I've been sitting at my desk working for hours" type neck stiffness and ache), feel nauseous, have trouble eating and feel jittery and on edge. It feels terrible, and I imagine what it might be doing to my physical health. This comes and goes, but usually if this is happening, I'm at a fairly constant state of more edginess than normal.

My most recent episode, where I was concerned about having more traffic noise (than my previous home) at certain times of the day in our new home, went on for a couple of months, coming and going, even while on vacation out of state. Ruminating on what was bothering me just made it worse, but I had trouble coming back again and again to ruminating again. I think finally my dosage of 40 mg fluoxetine (Prozac) kicked in (I went on fluoxetine/Prozac in May, then it was upped in July), plus I started realizing how common having some noise outside one's home was at other friends' homes. I'd never even noticed it before till I started paying attention. I also thought a lot about what my mother's chaplain friend said about "radical acceptance" when one is having trouble with worry and anxiety. She also talked about saying, "Good dog," acknowledging an anxiety-provoking thought, then putting it down.

Have you noticed anything that makes your anxiety stronger or makes it decrease?

Jump to this post

Every event that is in a new place with different people in it elevates my anxiety. As I’m waiting for this event unless I stay fairly busy I fall into a dark path very easily that feels very lonely.
What I can use to counter this awful feeling and irritation is other productive activities like group meetings, exercise, calling friends or family, connecting with mayoclinic,etc..

REPLY
@ailean55

Abused as a teen. A family member abandoned us 10 years ago.Lyme disease then fibro. Just found out three cardiac arteries are severly calcified. Talk about depression? Yep. If it wasn't for God and my hubby I would give up.

Jump to this post

Hi, @ailean55 – I wanted to add my welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. You have been through a lot of very hard times, and I'm sure you have painful memories from them.

Good that you have a support system in your husband.

Is your health situation the hardest on your mental health right now, or the past situations, or something else?

REPLY
@stsopoci

Every event that is in a new place with different people in it elevates my anxiety. As I’m waiting for this event unless I stay fairly busy I fall into a dark path very easily that feels very lonely.
What I can use to counter this awful feeling and irritation is other productive activities like group meetings, exercise, calling friends or family, connecting with mayoclinic,etc..

Jump to this post

@stsopoci
Hi there,
It’s very admirable your not just avoiding your problem but making the effort necessary to do the things to help control your Anxiety. Anxiety is difficult and time consuming to overcome. At least your endeavoring to control your Anxiety. With your valiant efforts I have no doubt you will conquer your Anxiety. I’d recommend differentiating between rational and irrational thoughts.
Jake

REPLY
@lisalucier

@annedodrill44 – I have had times when my anxiety feels like my blood pressure must surely be elevated, and I've had mild chest pain (that is clearly anxiety, not actual heart, though I wondered about the effects on my heart), chest tightness, a really stiff neck and shoulders (more than just a normal "I've been sitting at my desk working for hours" type neck stiffness and ache), feel nauseous, have trouble eating and feel jittery and on edge. It feels terrible, and I imagine what it might be doing to my physical health. This comes and goes, but usually if this is happening, I'm at a fairly constant state of more edginess than normal.

My most recent episode, where I was concerned about having more traffic noise (than my previous home) at certain times of the day in our new home, went on for a couple of months, coming and going, even while on vacation out of state. Ruminating on what was bothering me just made it worse, but I had trouble coming back again and again to ruminating again. I think finally my dosage of 40 mg fluoxetine (Prozac) kicked in (I went on fluoxetine/Prozac in May, then it was upped in July), plus I started realizing how common having some noise outside one's home was at other friends' homes. I'd never even noticed it before till I started paying attention. I also thought a lot about what my mother's chaplain friend said about "radical acceptance" when one is having trouble with worry and anxiety. She also talked about saying, "Good dog," acknowledging an anxiety-provoking thought, then putting it down.

Have you noticed anything that makes your anxiety stronger or makes it decrease?

Jump to this post

Lisa, the perplexing thing for me is that I don’t need issues to trigger anxiety. It literally comes out of the blue. It’s as if I have a short circuit between my brain and gut. An electrical problem of sorts? But certainly when I have stresses, the anxiety attacks are more frequent. And my symptoms are as you described, only no chest pain.
I am now practicing TM. It is supposed to heal the damaging effects over time. We’ll see.

REPLY
@annedodrill44

Lisa, the perplexing thing for me is that I don’t need issues to trigger anxiety. It literally comes out of the blue. It’s as if I have a short circuit between my brain and gut. An electrical problem of sorts? But certainly when I have stresses, the anxiety attacks are more frequent. And my symptoms are as you described, only no chest pain.
I am now practicing TM. It is supposed to heal the damaging effects over time. We’ll see.

Jump to this post

I agree that the hardest and scariest anxiety is the moments when I have no events or issues in front of me to worry about or have anxiety about. In fact, sometimes when I'm active and doing well all of a sudden this dark sense of pending doom hits me. I try to keep busy and sometimes call my sister to just talk.

REPLY
@jakedduck1

@stsopoci
Hi there,
It’s very admirable your not just avoiding your problem but making the effort necessary to do the things to help control your Anxiety. Anxiety is difficult and time consuming to overcome. At least your endeavoring to control your Anxiety. With your valiant efforts I have no doubt you will conquer your Anxiety. I’d recommend differentiating between rational and irrational thoughts.
Jake

Jump to this post

When anxiety hits, I run towards a rational person to talk to because GAD doesn't allow people to know what is rational. It's nuts!!

REPLY

Sometimes I find myself being very confrontational with anyone around me, feeling like hitting them with a baseball bat or something. This moment setups an alarm to me like that dark moment I have at times ….I have to talk with my wife or sister about what I'm feeling. I will not talk to anyone else until this feeling passes. My doctor (GP) knows about these episodes and wants me to report the times and increases of these. I'm on Lexapro 20 mg so I can't take more but I can supplement with propranolol 40-60-80 mg if needed. I believe my childhood experiences have not been fully talked through with a male psychiatrist and I know that I need to challenge myself by seeing one. I tried several years ago to see one…. I had nightmares about killing him after one visit. I guess it's time to try again.

REPLY
Please login or register to post a reply.