I haven't worn the collar my neurologist prescribed since my big panic attack on Friday night, but that attack was so terrible that I still get scared when I even think about putting that collar back on. I really felt like I was suffocating and that there was nothing I could do about it and I was going to die. I'm not sure if it meets the DSM V definition of a panic attack, but I was certainly panicking.
So I don't want that to happen again & I've been avoiding the collar. Yesterday I actually hid it in a closet so I don't have to see it.
My anxiety has been worse since Friday night than it's been in a long time, like several months. Since Friday, I've been taking my extra .5 mg of Xanax each day. (I usually take two .5 mg dosages—one at noon and one at bedtime—every day, regardless of how I'm feeling, but I also have an additional .5 mg I can take at my own discretion, which I haven't been needing much for quite some time now.) I've been feeling like that addiional .5 mg hasn't been enough these past few days, like tonight. I already took my extra .5 yesterday only about 4 hours ago, so I really shouldn't take another right now, but I'm too scared to go back to sleep.
My therapist is on vacation right now. Last week and this week. I know she's going to say that her absence affected all this, and maybe she's right. It certainly is distressing that I don't have the kind of professional support that I'm used to right now. Normally, I also see an intern for individual therapy at CWC once a week on Friday mornings, so I'm going to go to CWC as soon as they open this morning & ask if I can see her today, as well. If she isn't available, I'll ask if I can see one of the other interns (There are generally about 6 at any particular time.), because I know all of them reasonably well, and so it wouldn't be like talking to a stranger, as it would be if I called whoever is standing in for my therapist while she's gone.
I phoned my psychiatrist last night and told him I'd had a couple of panic attacks, but I didn't mention that the increased anxiety has been continuing. I hadn't really thought it was until after I'd left the message, and particularly now since I woke up from the nightmare & want to take Xanax & can't.
I keep crying when I think about not being able to take the Xanax, because I know it woudl help. It's been a long time since I had anxiety this bad. I probably should just take an extra Xanax—my dosage is quite low according to the Internet. (Average daily dosage is apparently something like 3 mg, with doses up to 10 mg to prevent panic attacks. I'm only taking 1.5 mg/day.)
I think I'm going to go take another .5 mg right now. I think my psychiatrist would say that's okay when I'm too afraid to sleep, and I can talk to him about it tomorrow.
I'm going to go play a game on the iPad. I'll see if the Xanax takes effect & I feel like I can go back to bed. Worst case scenario: I just stay awake for the next 5 hours until I can go to CWC. I'm hoping that won't be necessary, but it's a comforting worst case scenario, because it isn't too terrible.