To ask the GP for something other than talking therapies- mental heslth(7 Posts)
My mental health has always been all over the place. I had a non-specified eating disorder for 4 years as a teenager- closest to bulimia but more of the purging than the binging. A few years later I started to feel very anxious and low with suicidal thoughts. I didn't seek help for a long time and was recommended CBT and counselling. I've been on and off for the last 7 years and have been through several rounds of talking therapies of sort. I seem to feel like I'm getting better, go through a few month periods when I'm very happy and positive about life and then... Bam. Crying, low, suicidal thoughts, awful anxiety. I'm there again right now.
DP encouraged me to make an appointment to see the GP and I'm on my way now. I've moved around a lot and don't know how much of this is on my records. I'm scared of antidepressant side affects. Shall I ask them to explore my options and take the risk- I'm a bit at a loss of what to do.
Just be honest with the GP and tell them you're open to anything that might help. For what it's worth anti-depressant side effects aren't necessarily awful (mine aren't) and they can help to get you in a stable place to engage effectively in therapy or give you enough stability for your brain to heal
I'm scared of antidepressant side affects
These are not necessarily severe or long-lasting. (Haven't been for me.) I'd give the ADs a go.
The benefit of AD side effects is that if you try one and it doesn't work for you, you can discontinue the med and the effect will go away. My DS was started on a SSRI and had the specific side effect we were most warned about (symptoms worsened, and he really went into a downward spiral). Once we figured out what was causing his deterioration, thanks to my astute niece, the med was discontinued and he returned to baseline within days. Now, he is on an AD/anti-anxiety med combo that is finally bringing him back to us - but the meds don't work overnight. I'd say it took 2-3 months to get dosages and meds right. Between the medication and therapy, we are beginning to see the amazing young man he is again.
I am on the other side of the coin... I would love to be able to access CBT but where I live (Ontario, Canada) it isn't covered under the provincial health care and is out of my reach financially. Forthunately, care for teens and young adults is a priority, so DS hasnt fallen into the same crack. I am trying to find a sliding scale service, so I can add my name to the wait list.
It is so difficult to face these demons - feelings you don't understand and can't control - but you are doing a fantastic job. Don't sell yourself short, this has been your reality for years but you are still fighting to make life better for yourself and your family. Your DH is right, your GP may well be able to help, good on you for taking the tough step to confide in DH and talk to your GP.
And, during dark times, there are no shortage of Mumsnetters who have walked this road who can hold your hand and help you walk it too. You aren't alone - please, never forget that.
Thank you for the kind responses. I've been put on a 10mg dose of citalopram
Good luck with the citalopram. I was on it for about two years for depression, started on 20mg and after about 6-8 weeks there was a noticeable improvement (I was severely depressed when I started on it). Bear in mind you may have to increase the dose as the therapeutic dose for depression is 20mg and above. Also, I was horrendously ill for about a fortnight when I first started it, with all kinds of side effects, but I'm so glad I sat tight through it all because after that almost all of them went away. The only things that stuck around was yawning, night sweats, and a dry mouth, none of them a big deal. I hope it helps you as much as it did me.
Personally I've only ever found ADs to be a sticking plaster solution. Talking therapies on the other hand enabled me to change.
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