View Full Version : Confirm I Am Crazy, or Help Me Undertand Please

05-31-2010, 07:27 AM
OK, I think most of us hit a period at some time where we begin to question our own sanity with Lupus. Or at least I hope so, because I am there.

I can deal with the aches and pains. I can deal with the limitations on sunlight. I can even deal with the realization that this isn't going away.

But what I can't figure out is how to deal with one particular issue that I have, and my Rheumy isn't terribly familiar with it (nor was my original rheumy). Sometimes I feel, for a lack of a better work, tense. Specifically when I go outdoors for a period of time, and ESPECIALLY when I am going under fluorescent lights. But I sometimes can't determine if it is the lights themselves, or also the ANTICIPATION of going under the lights in places where I have reacted badly to them.

An example might help... this morning, my kids asked for donuts. It is a holiday, so we threw a little eating caution to the wind, and I said yes. Now, I have had reactions to the lights in that store before, so I gave kids the money, and they went in a select the donuts, paid and came out to car for us to head home. While I was waiting in the car, I swear my head just started to feel 'weird', which it does on multiple occasions. Sort of like a 'cap' that made me feel a bit anxious and lightheaded. But I didn't go into the store, so the lights inside couldn't have impacted me.

Another example... we helped chaperone a trip to the Natural Museum of History last week. When it was time to go into the IMAX theatre, I was feeling fine. No issues. Once we got in, and the lights started changing, and the movie started, my palms began to sweat, I felt dizzy with the movement on the screen (one of those 'wrap around screens'), and I felt sick to my tummy. I had to go into the quiet room, but still couldn't look at the screen.

I get the same odd feelings at multiple stores, but sometimes I THINK at the prospect of going to those stores. Tense, apprehensive? Lightheaded? There is a physical manifestation. But I am not sure... is this physiological, or psychological?

Any opinions, or like experiences would help. Also, if you or someone you know had the same, any suggestions?

Thanks for reading this.

Lucy Lu
05-31-2010, 08:04 AM
Hello Little Guppy, Sorry to hear you are going through this stage right now. I myself started having what I consider "anxiety attacks" with sudden sweaty palms, light headedness, the hazy "cap" you mentioned and dizziness. I would start thinking about something that at any other time would've caused no reaction and find myself breathing heavily, needing to sit down and asking friends to keep an eye on me. I called it a stage because I went through these random attacks for a period a little less than a year. And just as quickly as they came, they went. Prior to that year I had never had an attack and I haven't had one in three years.

My random onsets were in different locations but I don't recall having any problems with the florescent lighting. I know it's not good for u. Most of my attacks were actually right before I went to bed. I didn't want to add anymore meds to the already large list, so i would just go to my happy place. I would try to meditate and push it out of my mind until the spinning stopped. Don't know if this helped you at all, thought it might be usefull to know you're not crazy, at least about this :) Keep your head up and keep talking to your docter. Lucy Lu

05-31-2010, 08:20 AM
As for the first example, i'd say you were tense about the kids going into the store without you. As for the IMAX theater I get the same type of reaction. It's the way they are built as far as I'm concerned. I fell like I'm falling and get a fullblown panic attack.

Panic and anxiety don't make you crazy, you just feel that way.

nonna :twitcy:

05-31-2010, 08:30 AM
Thanks ladies. I am in tears reading your responses right now.

I actually feel like the anticipation or concern about feeling this way limits what I am willing to do on occasion. I am not depressed, nor am I a natural worrier when it comes to myself (worrying about my kids is a whole other story). But I just hate the way this makes me feel... like some items are out of my control.

I too hope this will pass for me. I want to not anticipate the worst. Perhaps it really is that simple, and I need to learn to take some breaths and know it has passed before.

Hugs to you all.

06-03-2010, 02:48 AM
I wonder if Lupus makes us more susceptable to these panic attacks, I always thought it was just part of being me. But I do seem to get them more regularly now, especially at work

still on a down cycle, trying my best to get up

06-16-2010, 03:20 PM
You are NOT crazy. I have extreme anxiety, and it sounds to me like your having a bout of your own. I know that dealing with the physical pain of lupus is bad enough, but at least the pain is tangable..The emotional and psychological part is a whole other ball game. I am currently dealing with this issue as well.I am an anxiety ridden mess!! I panic even thinking about doing something that could make me feel sick or uncomfortble. Getting in the car, going to the store,going to the Dr., having the lights on or the curtains open, even taking a shower is all mentally trying and scary sometimes for me. I know that some things do bother me physically, but it is the mental aspect of this disease that is hurting me the most.
anyways, my suggestion to you is xanax.I dont like medicine, but this has really helped me. I have a very low dose, that I only take during the day when I start to have these anxious feelings, and It helps me get through the day. Yesterday I picked some fresh lavender in the garden, and made a nice hot infusion. I keep it around for the bath, and just to smell sometimes when i'm starting to freak out. I think it helps. Also one more thing, now that you know what those anxious feelings are, it will become less scary when u have them. u can now tell your self when its happening "This is just anxiety" and just take a deep breath, and I promise it will get better. lol..one more thing, their is an auther Lucinda Bassett (Basset, Basett??) and I read one of her books about panic and anxiety, and she helped me. Hope this helps!!!

06-16-2010, 05:42 PM
I am SOOOO glad to see this thread. I go through a lot of the feelings and emotions that you all have described. I knew that they were some type of anxiety and/or stress, but I couldn't put my finger on "why".
I know that stress can trigger a flare-up in Lupus and that it can make our symptoms worsen. I try, very hard, to manage these feelings of anxiety because I do not want to cause my own flare-up.
I can see that this is yet another thing that many of us share and have to learn how to deal with and control.
I also, quite often, fall into states of deep depression and I know that this is something else that many of us share and have to learn how to cope with.
So, you are not alone and, while that can be comforting, it is also rather sad that we have to deal with these issues as well. :-(

Peace and Blessings