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Recovering from an almost year long episode.

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    Recovering from an almost year long episode.

    I was first diagnosed with depression at 16 and again at 22. At 31 I was put on medication for depression. A few years passed, then hello perimenapause and hello first nervous breakdown. Recovered in a few weeks, but continued thearapy for two years. After that my mood swings got worse and I was never sure who I would be. I blamed hormones.

    About a year ago, the depression was getting really bad so my doctor upped my depression medication; and started my year from hell.

    I got manic, noticeably manic, went back to doctor. They changed me to Paxel to see if that worked better. Things got little crazy, I got a little crazy. At this point I still was diaganost as having depression. After about 6 weeks on Paxel I was straight up crazy, although I didn't realize this until the episode ended. I'd walk for between 3 to 5 hours a day. I couldn't sleep, regularly going 2/3 days without sleep. I realized I'm a genius and could solve all the world's problems from my computer. I was off work for this entire time.

    Luckily I worked for NSHA and they have a long term disability program. They got me into a psychiatrist for an assessment; only an assessment that would determine if I could work. One three hour visit that would not be repeated. This was in December, 9 months from when I started my downward spiral. This is were I find out at 49 years of age that I have Bipolar 1, with mixed episodes and rapid cycling. It was the Paxel that had carried me to my full blown mania.

    I went off Paxel, started wellbutrin and Seraquil. This took about 3 months to get to the starting dose the psychiatrist recommended. This is sort of where I am now.

    I live in NS. It is about 1 1/2 years wait to see a psychiatrist, if your able to pay for private. It is between 2 and 3 years to see a psychiatrist through our health care. My doctor didn't seem to get it (he didn't even read the report sent by the psychiatrist, it was 12 pages and he didn't have the time). He was kind enough to give me a copy so at least I now know what is wrong. After reading the report and realizing I was not being treated the way it was recommended, I switch doctor's. Except this is Nova Scotia so I switched to a nurse practitioner. She's great, but doesn't have the training to cope with me. It is almost June and I am still home, scared to go out in fear of what I might say or do. I did see a therapist for the first 6 months through EAP but that ran out. After a 9 month wait I finally got to see someone through mental health, he retired 6 weeks later. I go to see another therapist starting this week(it's been about 2 months with nothing).

    I have friends and family who want to help but they don't how. Everyone keeps saying the meds will kick in soon and everything will go back to normal. For now everyone just tries to avoid me until everything returns to normal.

    I no longer know what normal is. It's been over a year of depression and mania. I wanted to die everyday through out January and February, when I was switching meds. The only reason I made it through is my youngest daughter graduates high school this year and I would not put her through that during an already stressfull time. Summer of 2020 looks like my earliest escape time if I don't want to completely screw up my children.

    Sorry for the rant but I've had no one to talk to about this for months. I'm struggling. Although I'm not battling suicide everyday anymore, I still think how it might be nice if I had a heart attack in my sleep. I try to hide how I'm feeling from my family, I never see my friends anymore, but they know things aren't good
    My husband keeps asking why are you upset, why are you so tired, what did I do to upset you. I can't answer these questions, I wish I could. I try telling myself this will pass but I'm have a hard time believing it.


    I need help.



    #2
    Hi Chantelns,
    Sorry to hear about your troubles - hang in there! I hope you find a doctor that does "seem to get it". I had to wait in Ontario to see a psychiatrist (only six months compared to NS), but had a family doctor that was reasonably knowledgeable about bipolar. It took me about a year and a half to get back to something approaching normal after a manic episode that was recognized early. Meds take time and patience is key. But I know patience can be hard to come by. If you've got the energy to exercise, some find that helpful. For me, getting enough sleep is more important. Some people notice diet makes a positive difference. Medication does most of the work in my case, but these other things can help while you work on finding the right med mix.
    I've never been on Seroquel, but have taken Wellbutrin during depressive episodes and find that it doesn't cause any serious side-effects or discontinuation problems. I was on 450mg of wellbutrin. BTW, any trouble finding wellbutrin at the pharmacy? It was on backorder in Ontario recently.
    In the midst of an episode, it always feels like it will always be the way it is right now, especially during a depressive episode. But while episodes can be long, they do pass.

    Comment


      #3
      Welcome to the forums Chantelns. Nice to hear from you again quack424.
      AJ

      Humans punish themselves endlessly
      for not being what they believe they should be.
      -Don Miguel Ruiz-

      Comment


        #4
        I'm sorry to hear you had to go through such a long waiting period (and still going) waiting for a Psychiatrist. It can be a hard experience going through mania and the fact that you've had to wait so long between doctors isn't helpful. Can you do a special request for a Psychiatrist. Can you get a Psychiatrist that does sessions over the phone, Skype or Facetime? I've heard of some doctors doing this now.

        I hope everything is well with you now. Hopefully the meds have kicked in by now and you're experiencing somewhat stability.

        Comment


          #5
          Hello and welcome Chaneteins . Unfortunately some doc docs presrcibe and forget. That is they precribe something to a person with depression and then forget about it un less the patient complains. As you have found out some A/D's can cause mania.

          Perhaps you can get your A/D medication in a smaller amount? It is sometimes easier to ease down on the medication that are affecting you. Take Care. paul m
          "Alone we can do so little;
          Together we can do so much"
          Helen Keller

          Comment


            #6
            Thanks for the comments. It really does help knowing there are other people like me out there. I appreciate all advice. To clear things up a bit, at present I am taking 300 wellbutrin and 250 seraquil. I am on waiting list for both private and public psychiatrists

            Comment


              #7
              I have gotten a new therapist through mental health. Biggest problem is figuring out proper meds. Although I really like and trust my Nurse Practitioner she has told me herself she is not qualified to answer my questions about meds, so we're both researching and trying to figure out what does what. I know it can be a really long hard battle to get the right meds. I'm just really worried that because we don't really know whay we're doing we aren't going to be able to get it right. Thanks again for the support it really helped.

              Comment


                #8
                Chantelns a pharmacist would probably be a good resource for your drug related questions.
                AJ

                Humans punish themselves endlessly
                for not being what they believe they should be.
                -Don Miguel Ruiz-

                Comment


                  #9
                  That's a good idea AJ. Thanks.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Let me know how you make out.
                    AJ

                    Humans punish themselves endlessly
                    for not being what they believe they should be.
                    -Don Miguel Ruiz-

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Hello Chanteins .I hope that your nurse practitioner can find what works. For me it was large doses of seroquel that finally got me off the rapid cycling and mixed state roller coaster that I was riding. Once I was fairly stable the doc worked at lowering the amount of seroquel while slowly adding other meds. until we found out what worked.

                      My main problems with high dose seroquel is that it turned me into a couch potato, but it did work eventually.Take Care. paul m
                      "Alone we can do so little;
                      Together we can do so much"
                      Helen Keller

                      Comment


                        #12
                        I am so sorry it has been a rough year. It is a lot to take in but you appear to be extremely proactive. Which is hard to do when your mood is low. In my experience, it does take some time to adjust to it all but with supports it will be a little easier. I highly recommend seeking out a support group, if possible. It is one way of having your feelings and experiences validated but those who have a different understanding.
                        Do take care

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