Therapy or Medication Psychiatrist, which one?

Discussion in 'Mental Health Disorders' started by yous, Nov 4, 2011.

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  1. yous

    yous Well-Known Member

    So this is my first time attempting to tackle my depression by going to see a doctor (I think I have bipolar).

    I was give 2 choices.

    One was to see a therapist which was a 50 minute talk with some doctor.
    The second was just a medical psychiatrist who will probably ask me brief questions then prescribe to me some medication.

    Which is best? Which benefited more?

    They asked me if I had thoughts of hurting someone or myself. I have thoughts of suicide and ways I was going about doing so, but I never really found myself to the point yet of acting upon it, though I do have a time. I guess you can say I sorta lied about the severity? I don't want to be caught in a "trap" where they have you locked up in a facility for days or can't work around the schedule. I don't want this to be a frustrating experience where I am controlled.

    Please if anyone can share their experiences, that would be help A LOT. Thanks!
     
  2. BeautifullyChaotic

    BeautifullyChaotic Well-Known Member

    I would talk to a therapist first, he or she can help you with some questions and quizzes that will tell you if you are bipolar and need medication. Before you go (if you decide to go) make a list of the things you want to address with the first meeting, such as bipolar testing and your "intention-less suicidal thoughts". The list will help keep you on track and accomplish what you want from the meeting. Then, if you test as bipolar he or she can refer you to a psych to seek more input and medication.
     
  3. Butterfly

    Butterfly Pokémon Master Staff Alumni SF Author SF Supporter

    Both have their pros and cons. A psychiatrist will be the one who will actually in the end give you a diagnosis. They will do an assessment, if bipolar is suspected will perhaps ask you to keep a mood diary etc and can refer you on to a therapist should you need it.

    A therapist will be able to help you explore your mind and thoughts and can help you change the way you think and to be able to come to terms with other thoughts and feelings.

    Either one will be helpful but if bipolar is suspected you may need some meds to help stabilise your mood so I would perhaps see the psych first but it is entirely up to you.
     
  4. Shock

    Shock Well-Known Member

    This is tough.

    I have been to about 8 therapists during my time and none have ever helped, apart from having someone to talk to. I just think that the techniques for avoiding depression most therapists suggest are very obvious - 'take some time out everyday for yourself', 'organise activities you enjoy', etc. There is also no science behind therapy. Its just people who think that their way of thinking is better then yours. Perhaps it is - its up to you to decide. For me, I'm just too stubborn to let some one tell me how to think and how to run my life.

    Over all I have found medication a lot more effective. For one its cold hard facts: chemicals can alter your mood. But of course there are downsides to be wary of:

    1. Withdrawl - This is the big one. If you decide to stop taking a pill do it slowly over time. With the pills I am on right now I cannot miss even 1 without getting nausea and headaches.

    2. Side effects - these vary per person per pill and can differ in severity. The pills I am taking now have no side effects. Ones I have taken before have made me so drowsy they may as well have been sleeping pills.

    3. Finding the right drug for you - this takes time. I have tried about 10 different types over 5 years.

    4. Waiting for it to kick in - again this can take time - up to a month - when you first start taking a pill. Be patient.

    5. Your body adapting - not sure if it happens to others but with me I have to increase my dosage about once every 6 months.

    Anyway, sorry to be long winded. I hope that helps in some way!
     
  5. yous

    yous Well-Known Member

    Did the current medicine you are taking help you at last? Also can you PM me the type of brand of medicine you are taking?

    Thanks
     
  6. Slothbear

    Slothbear Well-Known Member

    What works for them may not work for you though. I agree that that with my personal experience i have had better luck with medication over therapy. However even with medications it varies from each and every individual. What works for others may not for you. I would honestly try both avenues.... therapy and medication and see which you one is most effective to you. Also it may take a couple tries to get the medication and dosage correct.
     
  7. red ribbons

    red ribbons Well-Known Member

    I saw a therapist first who got me on to another therapist who sent me to the pshrink for meds. A pshrink won't see you in the US without having a therapist too. I guess they are covering all bases legally.
     
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