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when you know you're going rapidly downhill, how you you try to ward off a "bout" of depression?

(30 Posts)
mellyonion Thu 28-Aug-08 14:14:18

am looking for tips really to make myself feel better...

have sufferred from depression on and off for about 8 years...

am really feeling it at the moment, and am hearing all my alarm bells ringing loudly....don't want to take anti d's, and am trying to manage to drag myself out of my pit before reach the bottom...

what do you do to help yourself?

thanks.

MissChief Thu 28-Aug-08 14:17:12

in similar situation myself so no real tips, hope you get some and good luck! At least you're heeding the warning signs, that's a real strength in itself.

forevercleaning Thu 28-Aug-08 14:20:22

have you tried st johns wort? Excellent to help take the edge off things during the winter months, and now is the time to start taking it.

Please check the contra indications before you do though as itcan interfere with certain medications.

I would highly recommend it though.,

mellyonion Thu 28-Aug-08 14:21:57

thanks, but it doesn't help that i can see it coming....

i haven't been this bad for ages....almost years i don't think....

had really bad thoughts over the weekend...am not going to do anything daft, but the fact i had these oddly calm random thoughts worried me....

i need to hide away, stop giving my all to everyone else and take some time for me...i don't know how to though....

i hope you're ok misschief.

mellyonion Thu 28-Aug-08 14:23:13

x posted FC.... does it have side effects like anti d's?

i suffered with panic attacks triggered by lots of medication in the past...

forevercleaning Thu 28-Aug-08 14:26:50

not as far as i know, will google and come back to you. think it may interfere with the pill or something i read. Hang on a mo...............

forevercleaning Thu 28-Aug-08 14:30:49

found this...

You should not take St John's wort at the same time as any other antidepressant.
St John's wort may prolong the effects of some sleeping pills and anaesthetics. If you are to receive an anaesthetic you should tell the anaesthetist if you are taking St John's wort.
It reduces blood levels of oral contraceptives, increasing the risk of pregnancy and breakthrough bleeding.

i have never had a prob with it, and take it for just the winter blues feeling!

MissChief Thu 28-Aug-08 14:32:41

exercise? good diet, lots of fish oil/oily fish, avoid alcohol etc etc/ All of which I#m sure you probably know about, I know all this stuff too but it's finding the time/motivation to sustain it that does me in.

legalalien Thu 28-Aug-08 14:43:09

um

long hot bath with good book (if feasible)

tell relevant people around you about imminent gloom (helps to avoid petty arguments during the descent, if you know what I mean)

st johns wort (second this)

hot camomile tea or, I've recently found helpful, fennel tea.

<keeps thinking>

actually I tend to end up drinking too much white wine, and it doesn't help at all.

Igotwheels Thu 28-Aug-08 15:00:32

Exercise helps me, a walk, swim or cycle. Just at my own pace. I have to plan the next one as I am doing the exercise and this gives me a focus.

Phoning a friend for and planning something i haven't done before also helps me. Gives me time out from the everyday

pagwatch Thu 28-Aug-08 15:22:01

i drink more water
<< hmm i know but it does make a difference to me>>

I make sure i get out for a walk every day. Even if I have to wait until kids are in bed and DH is home.
Excercise and being outside are key for me.

mellyonion Thu 28-Aug-08 16:20:57

thanks everyone...

have just had a big chat with my friend...feel better for doing it...

i find it very difficult to say how i feel to anyone..i hint around it, or play it down, and just wish that someone would read between the lines...stupid eh?

they never do, and think how well i cope with day to day life doing all i do...sad

legalalien Thu 28-Aug-08 17:03:17

melly - so do I. I've been fighting this thing for - somewhat frighteningly - about 20 years now, and it's only recently that I've managed to convince myself to actively tell DH and one of my good friends when I feel a bad episode coming on - like you, I expect them to work it out, and when they don't I feel resentful, which adds to the problem. Don't actually expect them to do anything differently - and generally they don't, other than refuse to take no for an answer when I refuse to participate in activities - which is helpful iyswim.

BlaDeBla Fri 29-Aug-08 17:37:47

I've suffered from depression now for years and years too. I've found that when things start going wobbly, it's really important just to start taking the tablets before I fall off! Do you have good support?

Monkeytrousers Fri 29-Aug-08 17:42:23

8 years^?

^Why
don't you want to take ad's?

mellyonion Sat 30-Aug-08 08:30:39

because monkeytrousers, i feel awful when taking them..all fuzzy, out of body, physically unwell.... coming off them is worse, and with having 3 young children and an evening job, i can't afford to feel any worse than i do!

my depression is not constant. most of the time i tick along, but when i have a "flare up" its bad...really bad, and i live with it.

i was asking for advice on how others cope...so i could maybe try some of their tips....

bla...i have a lovely husband, and my parents are around. i have good friends, but all see me as a coper...i smile, i fake my behaviour around them...and even when i say i am feeling down, i don't think anyone really knows the full extent...its odd. i sort of go into overdrive, and rather than sitting and moping, i do so much that i never stop....i guess thats a coping mechanism too...

thanks to everyone who has replied.

MarlaSinger Sat 30-Aug-08 08:41:24

I have episodes or bouts of depression, more on than off, I refuse to take ADs because I did when I was younger and my memories are of being nauseous and angry a lot.

When I know it is coming I have to do stuff. Often I don't and then it is too late but I do find I can keep it somewhat under control by doing little things like keeping the house tidy (I say 'little' things - that can become mammoth...) - going outside every day (so easy not to with a young baby) - eat fruit and veg (don't want to) and wash my hair a lot - actually with this I think it is the act of washing and drying, I used to do it if I felt a panic attack coming on.

Sorry, am a bit weird I suppose so probably not much help.

MissChief Sat 30-Aug-08 10:49:46

not weird at all, it's knowing ourselves and being good to ourselves which counts, isn't it?
I'm with some other posters reluctant to take ADs - I've been given several differnet ones, almost as if they were sweeties to dole out by my GP. I've been shocked at how different they all are in terms of potency, side-effects etc (IMHO, they *all& have side-effects). With me, depending on the type of AD, these have ranged from extreme PMT type symptoms all month, insomnia, zombie-like feeling all day, lack of hunger, extreme hunger leading to over-eating, bad wind blush, nausea and headaches! Quite a list and I'm sure I'm not alone! So melly I think you're brave and sensible to try to handle it in other ways. I've completely lost faith in ADs and think even if they do work they're at best, a plaster over the cracks or a placebo, at worst they can turn you into a rather unwell person.

piratecat Sat 30-Aug-08 10:54:47

i can only say form my exp, that ongoing depression, with highs and lows, for me couldn't be controlled effectively.

I finally settled on prozac, after some 'lost years' on seroxat, or on nothing. My depresion is too strong at it's worst to handle, so i am on a constant low does of prozac, which has prob saved my life.

I wasted about 4yrs of my life battling not to be on anti's, i was desp againsy them and wantd to be 'norma' all by myself.

piratecat Sat 30-Aug-08 10:55:32

controlled effectively by diet, water, fresh air-- i meant

plantsitter Sat 30-Aug-08 11:04:14

Sorry you're feeling like this. Last time I felt the same I went to my GP and said exactly what your OP says, pretty much. The GP was really great and organised a one off counselling session for me where the lady gave me some really helpful tips such as the old exercise and diet ones plus some more behavioural stuff about catching yourself thinking in a certain way and methods to change the thought patterns. Obviously it was never going to be a deep level psychology thing but it really did help - partly I think because I felt like I'd actually taken control of the depression rather than leaving myself at its mercy. If you have a sympathetic GP, I'd really reccommend trying them first.

BeachBunni Sat 30-Aug-08 11:24:02

I'm another one for exercise. I find when I'm depressed I cut myself off from the world which in turn makes me feel worse. So when I start to feel it again, I try and make myself go out and meet people and make plans. Distraction, I suppose is the key for me.

mellyonion Sun 31-Aug-08 08:47:55

more thanks for replying girls...

plantsitter..

i was referre for councelling years ago. the woman works from my gp surgery...

i had a terrible experience with her...she madfe me feel a hundred times worse about myself...

i started crying when i first started taking...it was the first time i had been able to open up, and she told me i was wasting her time by crying...she also said that if i was paying her i wouldn't waste my money by crying.....it makes me fill up now, just thinking about it...

i'm sure that i will feel better soon...my mood has lifted hugely since last week....i think that sometimes life gets in the way..you know, you do so much for everyone else...i feel very unimportant and invisible sometimes. you know, i'm mum who keeps everything going...i feel like a glorified housekeeper, a mother who tends to her childrens needs, a wife who tends to her husbands needs, a daughter who tends to her parents needs, a friend who does stuff for friends who never return the favours or worse than that, the loyalty...

it helps actually to just get it out here....

i'll stop now while i can....wink

thanks again.

SammyK Sun 31-Aug-08 08:56:54

Hi OP, I really identify with how you are feeling. Having those terrible random thoughts and being so oddly calm about it. I do this too and could never explan it to anyone in RL.

Do you have anyone who is great company. I go see my sis for a cuppa and a walk when I am down.

I have happy songs I play.

I take a walk somewhere nice, pick brambles.

If I am frustrated I get my paints out.

I try to be kind to myself, have a bath, brush my hair, get a routine and force myself to keep it. This is harder than it sounds to someone who has never had that darkness over them.

Please rememebr though that this is a chemical imbalance in your body - if you need ADs again then you need them, it is not a step back to go back to them, it shows you are managing things by identifying these feelings and trying to banish them. {hug}

penona Sun 31-Aug-08 09:06:05

Have you thought about writing things down? It was suggested to me in counselling some years ago, and I find it does help. When I am having a bad patch and can feel myself descending into something worse, I try and write down all the negative feelings, all the stuff I can't tell people in RL in case it scares them (or me) to speak it out loud. It gives me the chance to unload all those feelings somewhere, and then walk away from them so I am not carrying them round hidden inside all the time. It doesn't always work, but sometimes it wards it off.

I keep the book, every now and then when I am in a good space I read it and it sort of amuses or frightens me. Some people I know ditch the writing altogether so they cant read it again.

Some of the other suggestions seem quite good. I actually had some cognitive therapy too, which was very effective and a good way to help yourself. Might be worth finding out about that from your GP or something (although it is time intensive).

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