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Please help me to help my friend

(12 Posts)
TryingNotToWorry Tue 10-May-05 12:48:05

Sorry I have had to change my name (more to protect my Mnetter friend's ID than me!).

My friend has had a very rough time recently and is on ADs and some other tablets. The problem is they are making her very drowsy, almost like she is really drunk. I am worried about her looking after herself, her child and being able to do her (very demanding and responsible) job, and even to drive her car.

I think it is the combination of all the drugs that isn't helping. Anyway, I am going with her to the doctor's tonight to give her a bit of support. I get the impression that the doctor just wants to give her some pills and send her home, treating the symptoms rather that the cause.

I feel really helpless, I don't fully understand depression and don't really know what to do to help her. The drugs are making her like a zombie and I don't know if she'll be able to assert herself to the doctor and get a solution.

Sorry this has turned into a right load of woffle. I guess what I'm saying is should I say anything to the doctor, should I be fighting her corner if she doesn't have the energy to?

Has anyone had similar probs with ADs making you drowsy and low, and been able to change to some that brought you 'up' instead of 'down'?


starlover Tue 10-May-05 12:51:49

i had similar probs when I was on cipramil/citalopram.
I took them at night rather than in the morning so that the drowsiness helped me sleep!
However, it is totally ok for her to aask for a different type of AD. Her gp should be able to prescribe something else for her to try, although bear in mind that these may take a few weeks to kick in.
AD's are a matter of trial and error, and what works for one person may have no effect on another.
A lot of them have drowsiness as a side effect, but unfortunately until your friend tries them she really won't know which side effects, if any, she will experience!

oh yeah, and yes... DO fight her corner if she can't!

TryingNotToWorry Tue 10-May-05 12:58:58

Thanks starlover. I had no idea they took that long to have an effect, I was thinking it would be a couple of days.

starlover Tue 10-May-05 13:04:26

no, unfortunately the vast majority take at least 2 weeks... i think it probably is because it needs to build up in your system

however, it cases like your friends it may be worth it. If she is so drowsy that you are worried about her ability to drive etc, then it would probably be better if she tried something else.

Having said that, some side effects do disappear after a while...

Angelus Tue 10-May-05 13:06:54

Yes, I've seen this with a friend with a couple of different ADs.

TryingNotToWorry Tue 10-May-05 13:08:29

She's been on the current drugs combination for at least a month I think.

Just feel a bit useless really. It's so frustrating that there's no quick fix. I think there must be a better way than what she's taking at the mo, she's just so doped up.

I thought that at least if the doctor is a bit dismissive I can help her push for what she wants (which is to get some different ADs).

starlover Tue 10-May-05 13:10:37

I actually found that my psychiatrist was a much better person to prescribe my AD's (having been through about 4/5 diff sorts!)... simply because he works int he field and is much more up on what the different ones do, side effects, how effective they are on different aspects of depression etc...

TryingNotToWorry Tue 10-May-05 13:24:22

Can you get referred to a psychiatrist through your gp? Might suggest it to her.

darlingbud Tue 10-May-05 13:26:28

My AD's are called Fluoxotine - why not mention that to the dr to see if they are an option. They are a mood regulator and have made me feel soooo much better that I can't put it into words.

starlover Tue 10-May-05 13:27:20

yep. By law they have to give you a referral if you ask.
might be a bit of a wait, depending on what area you are in. Our local health authority doesn't put a huge amount of money into mental health, and I had to wait 3 months for an appointment (despite 2 suicide attempts in the meantime !!!)

However, had I lived about 10 miles up the road I would have been given intermediary counselling etc whilst waiting, and put to the top of queue cos of my attempts to hurt myself!

TryingNotToWorry Tue 10-May-05 13:41:28

Thanks for the advice, I will see how she gets on at the doctors tonight.


starlover Wed 11-May-05 20:39:24

how did u get on???

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