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Anxiety/Panic recurring pattern.

just_let_go
Community Member

Hi All.

Have any of you noticed your anxiety runs in a kind of weekly pattern? I've noticed mine does, with variations of course. It usually goes something like this, with 10 being a panic attack 1 being no anxiety at all. 

Sunday 7 - 10, Usually the worst night, I often get no sleep and panic all night. Occasionally I get a proper panic attack. 
Monday 6 - 8, Due to a bad night sleep the night before, usually a pretty bad day with a dose of depression. Anxiety remains high and can lead to a second bad sleep. 
Tuesday 4 - 7, Usually starts to improve slightly.
Wednesday 3 - 6, Usually my best day
Thursday 3 - 7, Can be a bit random but usually manageable.  
Friday 4 - 8, During the day I'm fine, but for some reason later on it starts kicking in again.
Saturday 4 - 8. Often make the mistake of sitting around all day and the thoughts take over.

Once I noticed this pattern I thought about how stupid it really is. Why is it worse on weekends? Shouldn't I be better? Even the Sunday night panic attacks I'm getting make no sense. I don't hate my job, it's not that stressful. I know what I'm doing. I'm starting to realise that my anxiety is not getting any better which is not a very encouraging thought. I just had 2 nights in a row where my anxiety was VERY high and hard to manage. 

I'm currently on no medication for my anxiety or depression. I'm thinking about it but the more I read the more I become unsure. I was thinking of just getting something to take when I get really anxious before bed. Something to calm me down. Maybe that could break the cycle? The way I see it is it usually starts on Sunday, and that potentially screws my entire week up. Like this week for example. I had panic attacks sunday night, and basically no sleep. Therefore Monday was just horrible, I felt exhausted, and when I'm exhausted my anxiety often tries to take advantage of my weak state, and kicks in again throughout the day and night which can lead to yet another bad night. Which happened. It's Tuesday and I am just a zombie. 

I've read that anxiety meds can cause a lot of bad side effects, and can even make it worse. Apparently it takes up to a year for your brain to even realise that the meds are helping. I'm not really sure what to do. 

15 Replies 15

JessF
Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor

Hello Manipulator, I would look into talking to your doctor about medication, I have found it incredibly useful for my anxiety and its my experience that they definitely don't take up to a year to start working, particularly for panic attacks there are short acting medications that actually take effect within about half an hour.  The worst side effect I've had has been some drowsiness, but if you take them at night then it's usually fine.

It's interesting that Wednesday is your best day. Do you think this is because you've got into a routine by the middle of the week? As for the weekends, I think you may have identified part of the problem: sitting around.  Can you use your Wednesday/Thursday to start planning your weekend?  Organise to meet up with friends, go to a movie, anything to get you out and occupied.  I find stability and planning is the key to managing my anxiety.

Chloekat84
Community Member

I know how u feel. My anxiety can often be predictable but often it can be unpredictable and thats what i hate. Today isnt a good day for me. Bad anxiety has hit me for no apparant reason i dont know why but its horrible feeling of too much adrenaline in my system. It was hard when i was out down the street today feeling the way i do 😞

AGrace
Blue Voices Member
Blue Voices Member

Hi Manipulator,

It's a good idea to monitor how your mood operates throughout the week, it can be useful information in terms of identifying triggers. It may be worthwhile noting what you were doing before the panic attack, what you were planning to do, and what you did do to get through the attack.

In my instance Anxiety ranked about a 10 nearly every day. During the week because of pressure at work, and on the weekends due to pressure from my partner to do things or go places.

Jess has provided some really insightful advice, which I completely agree with. I don't think I'd be here today if it wasn't for medication. There are a variety of options and your Dr/Psychiatrist will be able to talk you through their possible side effects. I haven't heard of the one year thing, for me it's usually been about 6-8 weeks. The other thing is don't expect to try one and that will be the ideal, sometimes it's a bit of trial and error because we can absorb and react to the ingredients differently.

I also wondered if you are getting support from a Psychologist/Counsellor? For me it's be the combination of treatment angles that has been most helpful. 

The other trick with anxiety is to try to commit to opposite actions. ie if you feel anxious and don't want to go out. The best thing to do is to go out anyway. If you stay home, then each time you want to go out it will cause anxiety. In essence anxiety has a way of feeding itself it we reinforce it through our behaviours.

Let us know what you decide.

AGrace

geoff
Champion Alumni
Champion Alumni

dear Manipulator, anxiety is a great concern because it also controls how we feel and what we do or want to do.

The hump day of the week seems to be a good day for most people, maybe it's looking forward to pay day or you are on the down run to the week end, so a lot of good comments have been made to you from those above, but you do need to be on some medication, and it does only take a few weeks for this medication to take effect, because if it took a year then no one would even bother taking it.

So unfortunately someone has told you a misconception, so we would like to help you, as anxiety is a curse.

This medication that your doctor will give you will be a low dose to start with, just to see whether or not the side-effects are too great or whether your body will adjust to them, and if so then this medication can be increased.

Your sunday level of 7-10 could be that you do have to go to work, although I know that that isn't a problem, but from having a day or two off means that this freedom will go, because work commitments will then take over, and this also means the travelling in maybe a congested peak hour which by itself makes anyone anxious and annoyed.

Are your hours flexible so that you could avoid the traffic which would then make the start of your day less stressful.

I please suggest that you do go and see your doctor, because you don't know what will happen until you give it a go. Geoff.

just_let_go
Community Member

Hi Jess, thank you so much for the insight. I will go ahead and look into some medication. I feel like I have a grip on anxiety, but the panic attacks are what really trouble me. If I could get something that settles it down in 30 minutes like you said, well that could change the entire cycle. Wednesday I think is my best day because i have the day off, so it's a nice mid week break for me. Also because my routine is back in cycle I suppose. I think I am the same as you in terms of stability being comforting.

Hey Chloe, I can relate. Just when you think you've worked your anxiety out, or you think you're starting to get better, BAM, here's a panic attack to remind you who's in control. I'm sorry you had a bad day, just remember that it will pass. Don't fight it, let it happen and try to embrace the feeling. That always helps me. Sometimes when it gets really intense I say things to myself like, "Bring it on." .. "is that all?" I don't know why it helps. It's like the anxiety gets confused by your reaction. The adrenaline thing I get.The past few nights at almost exactly 2 AM, I've woken up abruptly as if someone stuck me with an adrenaline shot. My heart is racing and I feel like running a mile. But it always passes. I hope you're feeling better today. 

Hi again Agrace 🙂 Well the panic attack hit while I was in bed, and I think I know why. In combination with Sunday being abad night usually, I played video games for way too long before bed. So my mind was buzzed which couldn't help. Silly move on my part, but video games take my mind off my worries brilliantly. 10 every day? Wow. I tip my hat to you for enduring that. Amazing. Yes I will look into some medication, I understand that some meds will cause side effects, my housemate takes them and had a horrible reaction to his first prescription. I am seeing a Psychologist, but I've only had 2 sessions as she went on holidays shortly after we started. She should be back soon. That last bit of information was very interesting. Doing the opposite. There have been a lot of things I've put off because of this. Like going overseas, taking my relationship with a girl to the next level ect. I'm just so frightened of when a pnic attack might hit. I will try to put this into practise though. I'll see what's happening this weekend. Thank you so much, hope you are well.

Hi Geoff, Yes, you guys have reassured me that medication is ok. I will get some. And you're right about Sundays. Thank you. (I'm out of characters)

Hello Manipulator. How are you today? Today is an average day for me today. Thank for the advice i often try to fight the anxiety rather than embrace it. Its a different way of looking at it it might give it a try next time its bad. Im just finding it hard to keep still atm like i cant even fit down at read the paper it gets that bad. Anyways hope u are having a better day than me. Well wishes. Take care x

Hey Chloe. I'm doing OK today thankyou. It's usually after 6pm that my anxiety/panic starts. From my experience fighting it only makes it worse. I stumbled across a site called 'anxietynomore' and some of the techniques the authors mentions have really helped me at times. Little things like when you get that intrusive thought that instantly triggers that anxious feeling in your chest, don't try to get the thought out your head or fight the feeling, try analysing the thought, feel the anxiety and embrace it. It's hard at first but in the long run I believe it helps. When its so bad that I can't even sit down and read I often take a walk or a run. I hope you start to feel better. Keep in touch. 

Hello Manipulator. Thanx for the reply and advice on tking on the anxiety rather than ignoring it and fighting it which is what ive always done. Ill look up that site u said its called "anxiety no more"? Anyway im still battling away here as im sure u are as well. Hope to talk soon. Take care x

Hi all,

Manipulator I'm amazed that your anxiety patterns are like that. Until I read your post I never considered "patterns". I've now looked back on my experience and see that Fridays always start well, but usually it's all a trick to lull me into a false sense of security before the crap hits the fan. Your Sundays are your worst, and mine too. 

I get so worked-up about what I'll face at work on Monday, I have very troubled sleep. My depression usually whacks me by 8am so I'm primed for a "good day at work" - not!

ill have to watch those other weekdays and see if there are indeed more patterns to discover. 

Nice work, and thanks.