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Dr. Keane
Dr. Keane, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 1760
Experience:  Clinical Psychology PhD, Licensed Professional Counselor with experience in marriage/family, teens and child psychology.
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I have been having a lot of dizzy spells, accompanied with

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I have been having a lot of dizzy spells, accompanied with clouded impairment and anxiety attacks. Can all three of these be attributed to stress? And is there a medication that might alleviate these symptoms?
Hi and welcome to just answer,

Anxiety and panic attacks may cause the symptoms you are describing. It could also be something that isn't related to stress. There are medications available, however I would suggest that you go see your doctor to rule out any organic illnesses or conditions. He can prescribe something for immediate relief and then refer you to a psychiatrist and/ or a psychologist who can help you with the anxiety attacks.. You have started to help yourself by giving up caffeine, that's good news. Taking a warm bath is relaxing and if that helps you may be right in your assumption that it could be due to anxiety.
In the meantime, try this and see if it helps.
Practice deep breathing ...take a breath in through our nose and count to 4, hold it to the count of 4, and slowly release through your nose, to 4. Repeat for five, ten mintues if you can. If this is anxiety related, what the breathing does is "trick" your brain into thinking you are calm and stops producing the hormones that are causing the symptoms. You can do the breathing anywhere, it for as long as you are able or until the "feeling" has abated. When we experience constant states of anxiety we tend to tighten our muscles, clench our teeth, make a fist and so on. Once you become aware of doing any of these behaviors, try and relax, unclench, and breath.
This information is useful for right now, there is no substitute for going to physically see your doctor. I hope this helps and gets you feeling better until you see him/her.   
Dr. Keane
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Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Thank you so much for the suggested breathing exercise. I will certainly give it a try, and see what kind of results that I get.

As far as my physical health, I have already visited several doctors regarding this, and even though I am a little overweight, I have not been told of any sort of indication that my health would be causing the physical issues mentioned, however I will certainly go in and see if any new problems have surfaced since my last visit.

Regarding a mental health professional, I have always been afraid to visit one, as there tends to be (in my mind at least) a direct relationship with admitting that something is inherently wrong with me, and that needs to be corrected by someone that knows better (as who else would be a professional about my body, other than myself?).

So I guess what I need to know is, between the different mental health specialists, what kind of doctor would focus on anxiety related issues, and what would they do for me?

Also, when, if ever, should medication be used to treat anxiety?
First, you may be in perfect physical health, you just want to make sure there are no underlying issues. Then you can focus on your anxiety.
The concerns you have regarding "admitting something is wrong with you" is one common reason people do not seek help. Many people do not understand what the therapeutic process entails. It isn't a place where one goes to have the therapist fix them, we don't have that power. The patient does the fixing, what we do is teach you, we educate you to recognize the signs that say...oops, I'm getting ...(fill in the blank) and be able to halt it in it's tracks.
There are two types of doctor you can look for and may utilize both depending on how severe your anxiety may be. First there is the psychiatrist, the medical doctor who is versed in psychophamacology. They do an evaluation to determine if you may need medication for the anxiety. He will explore issues such as, family, alcohol, drug use and so on....Then there is the psychologist. Anxiety is best treated by a cognitive behavioral psychologist. What they do is give you the "tools" so that you are able to live without tremendous anxiety, to help you change faulty thinking.
For example: some people become anxious whenever they start to think about the "what if's", what if I fail , what if I lose my job and so on. The therapist helps the patient learn to use different techniques to stop this way of thinking, one way is called "thought stopping" think "what if" and you tell yourself to "stop" and train yourself to think of something else , after awhile it becomes automatic and the "what if's" aren't threatening anymore....I tell people who are the "what if's" to say "so what" instead. This is just one of many techniques you will learn. Of course it is not that simple, you the patient must be fully involved and be ready to do the work. The treatment is not what they can do for you, it's what they can do together with you! You have to do for yourself but they give you all the "tools". They are there to assist, teach, validate and encourage. I hope this helps.
Dr. Keane
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Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Wow, that was exactly the answer I was looking for. Thank you so much for your help. You've given me some helpful tools to try, and I'm going to see how they work this weekend. Again, thank you so much!
good, glad to help...

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