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Discussion in 'Opinions, Beliefs, & Points of View' started by Jemm, Dec 8, 2012.

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  1. Jemm

    Jemm Well-Known Member

    Do you think it's plausible to get out of this state without a doctor? I don't really understand why meds or a doctor is the go to answer...? I'm genuinely asking because I don't have any answers but I am also reluctant to believe with all the beauty in this world the only way out of the darkness requires cash and a prescription? But honestly, if this is what people who have experienced this anguish have done to heal (and believe needs to be done) I will let down my guard of skepticism and seek professional help...
    I would really like to know anyone's opinion...
  2. pickwithaustin

    pickwithaustin Staff Alumni

    I am not "pro" medications. Personally, I think if you can get there without them, then you should. Adding chemicals to the body can never be ideal. That said, there are times and situations where chemicals are essential. Even in a non mental health issue, for instance an infection of some kind, antibiotics can mean saving a life. Many other situations are also very true. In the field of mental health, while like anything else where no medications would ultimately be ideal, there are situations where medications are vital as well. Many mental health issues, including depression, are the result of chemical imbalances that affect the way that we think and feel. Medications can help replace those chemicals, or they may do things that stimulate the production of the chemicals that need to come back into balance. The unfortunate thing about today's mental health community, however, is that even though it can be agreed upon that medications can work wonders and are important, it seems that the drive forward is to assume that any situation just requires throwing medications at it. In many cases, in particular in the public health sector where people without insurance and/or who cannot pay for good therapy and counselling, government funded assistance plans almost require only medication dispensing vs. actual attempts to drill down to root cause for resolution.

    Your options are to either find coping methods on your own, or through peer support... or to seek professional assistance. Peer support groups are an excellent alternative to formalized doctor type treatment - though may not be enough in itself. Certainly worth trying. If you're in the U.S., check out NAMI (nami.org) to see if there is anything available near you. NAMI's programs do not have any fees.
  3. Jemm

    Jemm Well-Known Member

    It takes 4-6 weeks for an SSRI to take effect (brain chemistry changes)
    It takes 4-6 weeks of regular exercise to elevate a persons mood (same brain chemistry as above)
    all the drama and controversy centers around the stigma associated with meds and mental health... Does anyone believe the focus is in the wrong place? Instead of changing people's view to embrace meds, shouldn't we be teaching/guiding/counseling people to embrace a healthier life style, which in and of itself will elevate mood...?
  4. Acy

    Acy Mama Bear - TLC, Common Sense Staff Member Safety & Support

    I think a person's treatment choices for mental health treatment like any other health treatment is influenced by many things.

    If any health issue of any kind is impairing our ability to function and cope in our life, then a trip to the doctor to find out what he/she can offer is in order. Depending on the problem, there may be a cure (e.g, antibiotics for a specific bacterial infection). Or it might be less certain..."chemo" for cancer might depend on the kind and stage of cancer, the general health of the patient, the size of the tumour/extent of the systemic cancer...Or maybe there is no cure (as with the common cold), just symptomatic treatment to make us feel better.

    A diabetic can measure blood sugar and know if there's a problem. A person with broken leg can see a fracture in the bone on x-ray. In mental health issues, we don't have a yardstick that comes from the body, we generate a benchmark of our well-being by how well (or poorly) we are able to function emotionally and mentally. If we are delusional, we are not likely functioning well. An antipsychotic may be the fastest if not the only way to reground ourselves in reality. In many mental illnesses, the patient's own capacity to understand that his/her mental processing capabilities are impaired might be part of the illness. This makes that patient the wrong person to understand their own state of mind. And in such a case, it could be that taking the meds until we at least have our thinking back online is perhaps a good idea.

    Every medication has its desired effect(s) along with possible side effects. A good doctor will be happy to discuss the side effects and the pros and cons of taking/not taking meds. Patients, more and more, need to be advocates for their own health choices. Ways we can advocate are to have questions for the doctor - What is this med for? How does it work? How soon can I expect results? What are the side effects? How long will I likely be taking it? If this doesn't work, what is the next plan? Are there other treatments to go alongside of this medicine?

    By no means do we need to just go willy-nilly into taking meds, but I find myself concerned in threads such as this that being completely anti-meds might not be in our best interests, either. Working as a team member on our own health care team can help us find the right treatment and therapies that will suit us and our individual needs. No one wants to be on medication they don't really need to take...but by the same token, to eschew all meds just because they're meds, might prolong one's suffering. If an anti-depressant takes the edge off a mood disorder so the person can function better and then as they function better they begin to feel better and then because they feel better they don't need the med anymore...that's the aim...the hoped-for outcome.

    When we are offered or advised to take meds, I think we owe it to ourselves to ASK the DOCTOR some questions. The doctor is the best person to discuss your concerns and needs with - the doctor knows your medical and mental health history and can tell you about the drugs and about any additional or alternative therapies out there. And the doctor will be well-versed in the treatment outcomes of meds vs non-meds approaches.
  5. total eclipse

    total eclipse SF Friend Staff Alumni

    I totally agree with Acy the doctor your doctor is the one to give you the best advice on treatment hun please discuss it with him or her and then it will be you decision whether to take your doctors advice or not As stated you doctor knows your history we don't hun hugs
  6. Jemm

    Jemm Well-Known Member

    Thank you for the replies
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