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ToriLikesCats's avatar

Been Super Anxious, Having Migraines and Been Paranoid/Having Panic Attacks After Quitting Medical Pot?

Asked by ToriLikesCats (5points) July 14th, 2019

I find myself more paranoid than usual, scared that I’ll experience the hallucinogenic properties of THC due to the residual thc in my fat cells from the 50mgs of thc I took almost two months ago. Getting high was actually an accident as I wanted CBD instead of THC but the lady at the dispensary gave me THC gummys and I didn’t read the bag so I took five. It made me feel like I was going crazy. Seeing colors at the edge of my vision or grainy vision would cause me to be fearful that I was going to start “tripping” as the hippies called it, unable to control or see my real environment. When I trip my heart rate increases till my heart feels like its about to race out of my chest, I sweat until I seem like I’ve ran a marathon yet I feel physically cold to myself (a hallucination) but to the touch I am hot. I also see a tunnel but its colored, rainbow and circular- constantly moving with shapes as well, almost hexagonal or diagonal shapes similar to a kaleidoscope. The experience sounds ok on paper, but in reality its terrifying, as the level of anxiety is high and the shaking and feeling vomiting or nausea that comes with it. The flashbacks of the experience have caused me more harm than good and I live in real fear that at any moment I could be transported back to the anxiety I felt and the visions I saw. It hasn’t happened since the end of June but I am scared it will happen again. I’ve thought about seeing a therapist about it but I’m afraid they’ll think I’m a drug addict even though I have my medical marijuana card and I’ve done it a few times and found I hated it.

Since the experience, I’ve been zoning out more often and having issues concentrating more than usual, I’ll have flashbacks of the experience randomly or particularly when I’m in a situation that makes me anxious. Sometimes when I close my eyes I can still see imprints of colors from lights or thousands of grainy dots darting around. Or I’ll feel sort of “out of it” like I’m depersonalizing or having derealization.

Another thing that has been happening is zoning out when others are talking to me. For example when I talk to my mother or father I find that I will randomly tune them out when what they are talking about causes me to be bored or even anxious, and I’ll think of me randomly dying in a car crash with my family vividly and I’ll be disturbed but know its not real. This has been going on since childhood after I was in many life threatening experiences, but it got better for a while and went away but came back after I did mmj a few times. I decided that ceasing all pot usage would be best and that any kind of drugs may not be the answer. When I was younger the main thing that made me feel the best was nature, escaping the feeling of society’s pressures and just being in the present. I crave that, being alone and not having anything to do or worry about- in fact during the summer I haven’t been able to “not worry” or get a “break” because I’m constantly thinking about when school will start, what I’ll have to do, when is the next time I will get paid, what days I’ll work and so on. I know people will suggest a therapist but I’ve never had any luck with shrinks, they’ve always made me feel like a dead cat under a microscope- analyzing me so they can find something wrong to make me feel guilty about how my life situations have affected my mental health. I’ve been told with what I’ve been through, it seems like I have PTSD but the shrinks and doctors are reluctant to diagnose it in someone who is 19 or younger because they want to “exhaust” all their other diagnosis’. I hope someone has some advice as to how I can get back to feeling normal that doesn’t involve shoving big pharma pills down my throat and telling a shrink about my emotions. I also apologize if I seem stressed but I’m in a tough position right now life wise and going through an immense amount of stress, my father might die from kidney disease caused by diabetes and my mother and brother are worried, bills are piling up and I haven’t been paid for a while- I just feel like I’m at my wits end mentally and need a break. Any heartfelt advice is welcome, just understand that I am super frustrated with life at the current time.

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10 Answers

Patty_Melt's avatar

THC does not store in your fat. LSD has been known to store and come back, but THC does not. Nor is it hallucinogenic.
Paranoia happens sometimes while using it, but the effects are gone by the time it leaves your system. If you were hallucinating, you were on something else, or you are suffering a psychosis. If that is the case, you must get some help.
I know you say psychiatrists creep you out, but in order to help you, they have to be thorough.
Look at it like this, if they want to know how somebody died, they do an autopsy, which means everything in their body gets scrutinized.
If someone is suffering because their mental health is tilted a bit from normal, they must be studied so the doctor knows what to do to help them.
Self medicating is a very bad idea. Stop doing that.

Here is another way to look at it.
If you had stomach trouble, and went to a doctor, he could not prescribe anything to help you unless you answered questions about frequency of bowel movements, and what kinds of food you eat. It would be embarrassing to answer questions like that, but you would do it so you could feel better.
Me, I’m stuck taking over a dozen pills daily for an autoimmune neurological disorder. I hate swallowing pills all day every day, but if I don’t, I have seizures which contort my body in painful, unnatural positions. Many times I was on the brink of death, unable to breathe. I hate taking the pills, but I am so grateful a doctor finally figured out what was wrong, so something could be done to make my life better.
I still suffer every single day and night, but at least not to the extent that I fear constantly that my every breath could be my last.
I spent years suffering. Doctors couldn’t figure out what was wrong with me. I hated going to another doctor and another, and I still kept getting worse. Believe me, I know deeply how awful it is to tell your story again and again and nothing gets better.
Just hang in there, and keep trying, because when you find the right doctor, it will be such a huge relief.
Hang on, love. The answers are out there, somewhere.

JLeslie's avatar

It sounds like you might have a panic disorder and paranoia, could be PTSD also. It also really sounds like you are obsessing, I’m not sure if you are compulsive, it doesn’t sound like it, but you might look up OCD and see if you fit that. Pot is NOT what I would recommend to treat any of it. There are specific treatments and drugs for many of these things, and some types of therapies can help some times, but I know you said you don’t like therapists. There are different types of therapies, and there are good and bad therapists. Sometimes you need to see a few to get a good one. You might need a psychiatrist more than a counselor. Someone who can prescribe.

You named things you worry about, are they actually things that deserve that much worry? Or, you can’t explain why you are so afraid and worried?

Have you been through constant stressful times? Bad things happening? Or, one extremely traumatic event?

Have you had your thyroid tested? I highly recommend it.

Do you think there is any possibility you might be paranoid schizophrenic? If so, there is medication for that.

If I read correctly, you’ve had these symptoms before the MJ, and now it’s heightened as you come off of it. So, it’s not caused by the MJ, but rather worse as you withdraw. Is that right?

KNOWITALL's avatar

This sounds abnormal for thc od. Even shrooms and acid dont cause this in single doses. I would seek counseling, may all be in your head.

ToriLikesCats's avatar

No, I have not had my thyroid tested and I have not been hallucinating before the pot. It ceased after the use, it has happened only when I used it (when I had ingested the pot) and it hasn’t happened since. I have a generalized anxiety disorder already, PTSD includes paranoid behavior and I do not have delusions or hallucinations on the daily – I meant I fear being high without having it in my system since being high was so traumatic. What I was trying to say was that I am afraid of having the same experience that the drug caused me again, I’m not saying that I’m seeing or hearing things 24/7— if thats what you took away from my explanation then Im sorry. This only happened while on the drug.
I’m a sexual assault, physical abuse and rape trauma survivor- I’m not sure if all the terrible shit I’ve been through has messed me up but I’m 99.9 percent sure I am not a schizo, I would say there is a high chance I have OCD- my mother has it really bad. My Dad has PTSD really bad and paranoia from his PTSD as he’s a veteran. I also have BPD or borderline personality disorder that could be contributing to some of the things I listed above. I know for fact that depersonalizatoin and derealization are part of PTSD and anxiety- which I have both, and depression. And to answer one of the questions, yes I’ve been having withdraw symptoms, super bad anxiety and flashbacks and the craving for pot even though I know I shouldn’t use it.

JLeslie's avatar

With everything you’ve been through it’s completely understandable you are having an anxiety reaction, and even some obsessiveness. Add in the example in your home life from your parents, even if you didn’t inherit some sort of predisposition, you might need to learn better ways to cope.

I hope you can find some help and relief. I do think you can feel better. Reframe some things, and maybe find a more appropriate medication if you want to try medication.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@ToriLikesCats I’ll be really honest with you, with the issues you have, I would probably stay away from self-medicating with street drugs.

One of the things you learn at NAMI (Natl Alliance for the Mentally Ill) is that alcohol and street drugs can cause exacerbated reactions, especially if you are medicated. Not a good idea.

PS, As the kid of a bi-polar mother who refused to stop partying and drinking, the meds won’t work right until you back off the partying.

Patty_Melt's avatar

The symptoms you describe do not come from using THC, not even in heavy doses.
You have argued the point, but that will never change the facts.
If you were smoking joints with someone else who supplied the pot, it could have been laced with something, but don’t try to convince me you used shop THC and hallucinated.
You have come to a Q&A site which is not a medical facility asking for help with an obvious medical issue.
If you continue to look in wrong places you will never get the answers you need.
Get with some doctors, and get the help you need.

Kardamom's avatar

@ToriLikesCats You definitely need to see a doctor and tell them exactly what you have told us here, and any other backstory that goes along with it. The doctor will give you examinations and ask you lots of questions, but that is the only way they can figure out what is going on with you. Because of the PTSD and past trauma, you probably need to be seeing a psychiatrist too, or some other kind of therapist.This kind of situation needs the attention of doctors, it won’t resolve itself on its own.

Hawaii_Jake's avatar

@ToriLikesCats Thank you for trusting us and telling us your situation. It sounds very difficult. I’m sorry you’re going through this. Hugs to you.

The incident with the THC gummies must have been very scary. I’m glad you’re not taking those any more.

I am a person who lives with a mental illness, and I work in mental health. Here’s what works for me:
1. I stick very close to my doctor. I’m talking about my regular doctor and my psychiatrist. I tell them everything that is going on in my life. The more information I give them, the better the help I get from them.
2. I tell my therapist everything. Absolutely everything. My therapist does not tell me how to live my life. He listens, and then he asks me how I want to take these experiences and make a good life for myself despite all the trauma I’ve lived through.
3. I only eat the healthiest food.
4. I try to exercise 5 days a week.
5. I try to get good sleep every night.
6. I meditate at least 20 minutes every single morning without fail.

I came from a very dark place of actually trying to kill myself, and now I live a completely normal life with a job, an apartment, a boyfriend, etc. It wasn’t quick. The change from suicidal to normal took many years, but I did it with the help of doctors and therapists.

One of the things I found was that I had to shop around for a therapist who fit. It worked. I found one that I got along with really well.

I wish you all the best.

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