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How will I know if my teen needs anti depressants? How can I tell if they are recovering without?

(9 Posts)
hopskip123 Wed 20-Jan-16 14:57:47

Can anyone share please? Parents or medical people.
Doctor has suggested that my young teen is suffering from mild/moderate depression. For various reasons they have suggested we seek prescription andi ds. However we have now been able to introduce 3 other recommended mental health interventions and also 3 months of CBT starting soon.
So I'm wondering how long might it take before I can feel certain that recovery is happening without the anti ds? How will I know that the anti ds aren't required? Things are certainly better than 4 weeks ago but still has many bad days and still shows all of the symptoms that were concerning the doctor in the first place (just a little less frequently).

Clare1971 Sat 23-Jan-16 21:25:34

Doctors are normally reluctant to prescribe anti D's for young teens so I think they'd be on your side re waiting to see if the other input makes a difference unless they feel she is at risk of serious harm in the meantime. I'm guessing it was a GP who suggested you seek a prescription because presumably if it was an adolescent psychiatrist they would have prescribed if they thought it necessary. If that's the case then it would be worth getting a proper assessment from an adolescent psychiatrist and discussing it with them.

Rascalls3 Thu 28-Jan-16 11:01:28

It does sound a little unusual that they are keen to prescribe ADs for a teen suffering from mild/ moderate depression.
Our GP wouldn't for my 19 year old ( severe anxiety with mild/ moderate depression) Through private health insurance we were able to access a psychiatrist assessment and counselling ( CBT, mindfulness etc) She was given the option by her psychiatrist to take ADs but was reluctant. He suggested she discuss it with her GP. We spoke to a young (different) GP at our surgery, my DD was still reluctant to take medication and the doctor said he felt they were overprescribed on the NHS because they are used as a treatment to fill the long gap before talking therapies are able to kick in. In our situation she was able to see a counsellor almost straightaway.
A year later she is making a long, slow recovery. Exercise ( running), mindfulness etc all help. I think her anxiety is something she will always have to manage. However she has been able to continue with her nursing degree, something I doubted a year ago.
Obviously if your child has suicidal thoughts all of this is irrelevant and medication will be necessary. Go back to your GP ( possibly see a different doctor??) and take through your concerns. Good luck.

hopskip123 Thu 28-Jan-16 12:24:59

So for example, the previous 2 weeks were better than any in the last 6 months, but the last week has been really bad again, with today being close to one of worst days ever. But I dont know what recovery looks like if you see what I mean?
Do they have less bad days, or all the days are a little bit less bad than before, or small signs of happiness are more frequent or what?
I would prefer to avoid medication as its not a quick fix and brings problems of its own, but on the other hand I dont want my child to suffer unnecessarily if recovery isnt really happening.

Rascalls3 Thu 28-Jan-16 22:56:25

I imagine that every recovery is very individual. I know a year on my daughter is a great deal better, but I certainly wouldn't use the words fully recovered. I wonder if she will ever be completely free of her MH condition to be honest. It has been a very stressful year. I still breathe a sigh of relief when I see a positive text from her ( and we text multiple times a day). It is a like walking on egg shells and I await the next low mood, sleepless night, overwhelming anxiety with trepidation. Over the last year I have researched as much as I can. You want as a mum to find a solution and make them better. I visited yesterday and took vitamin D3 with me as I read this can have positive effects on low mood. No idea if she will actually take any. I have sent endless self help books. Bought a lumier lamp ( in case SAD was responsible ). You name it. It would be wonderful if one day I can say she USED to have MH problems.

febel Sun 07-Feb-16 21:51:56

In our (doctor's) practise the teenager has to be referred to our local mental health team at CAHMS and go for counselling before chemical intervention is even thought of. My YD did this, still ended up on anti anxiety/anti depressants which have worked for her....though they aren't a magic pill and she still has problems. They deal with the chemical imbalance in her body however , enough so she can function. She had to agree to continue to have counsellling/CBT therapy etc whilst taking them and they were prescribed by CAHMS. She says talking doens't work for her at all...but she doesn't go in thinking it will so that doesn't help. she is still v up and down and it's like living with a tinder keg at times...but not quite as bad as it was and she does sleep more now. Good luck.....

Nic002 Thu 18-Feb-16 07:05:03

My daughter suffering from anxiety, there has been bullying (not sure if it still going on- she doesn't talk to us now about her thoughts/problems) Dr told us anti d's seemed to be handed out like sweets she referred my 15yr old dd to cahms but referral was a long time coming through and she was getting worse, had to go private. she's on day / night calmers vitamin b/d and just lately I've introduced magnesium oil (from Holland and barret) since the oil there's been a slight improvement - more positive days than anxious or moody or down days. Counselling is a waiting game a long drawn out process we've been told. We're lucky she's willing to talk to someone. On bad days she harms herself, cries and cries and panic attacks. I just wanted to say that I too want to try everything before anti d's become a necessity.

Savagebeauty Thu 18-Feb-16 07:10:37

I have a DD with severe anxiety and ocd. The difference 18 months on Sertraline has made is incredible.
She's now at university and is a different girl.
She would never have got A levels and be doing degree without medication.

Her life has been transformed. Hours at CAHMS and private therapists did not help much.

mumslife Sun 21-Feb-16 19:14:18

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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