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Mileage

Feeling Isolated - Words Of Encouragement?

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Hey guys. It's my first post here. I'm a 20 year-old male who recently just started seeing a psychiatrist and was prescribed generic escitalopram. I've pretty much never taken hard oral drugs before other than minor pain relief like ibuprofen and acetaminophen (Tylenol). Excuse the terrible expression, but you could say I'm a medication virgin. lol.

Here's what happened. When I went to go pick up my prescription a few Mondays ago, I felt encouraged that finally someone listened to me so that I can start to begin the process of rebuilding my life. I took the medication after eating that night as directed by splitting the 10 mg tablet in half. Afterwards, all hell came crashing down apparently. I felt tired initially after like an hour. Then I felt like I didn't have a worry in the world. Then I went to the mirror and noticed that my pupils were dilated. I tried brushing my teeth and then I had a major freakout because I couldn't feel my face at all. Then I had a major panic episode and thought I was going to die my first time taking this medication ever, and at a reduced dosage. I felt like I was going to throw up and have diarrhoea at the same time. I started pacing the floor endlessly and kept asking my parents how I should know if I need to go to the hospital. They kept telling me I didn't and that I shouldn't take the pills anymore.

I was afraid to be alone that night because I kept feeling parts of my body going numb like my entire left arm and my left leg. My heartbeat felt a little weak and slow despite having a major freakout. I had bad coordination and I was having some minor visual hallucinations such as a big gigantic black blob in the corner of my right eye's vision that I couldn't see out of. I couldn't sleep at all that night because I was afraid I wasn't going to wake up. Any time I tried laying down, I'd have a spastic jolt awake without explanation 10 seconds after falling asleep.

Later on the following Tuesday morning (closer to the afternoon) was the time I actually tried falling asleep again. I kept being jolted awake with random and scary muscle spasms. I seriously thought they were mini-seizures. My left leg felt like it wouldn't relax and my left arm felt like it wasn't even there. Eventually I did fall asleep and slept until about 3 PM.

I tried calling my psychiatrist and leaving a message to tell him what happened but failed to remember all the bad side effects and only gave like half of them. His nurses called me back later to tell me that he'd written another prescription for me and that it'd help me not have such bad anxiety while on the drug. (I didn't mention the major anxiety, but whatever). I kept worrying, asking them if I'd done permanent damage to my body with that one dose (because it honestly felt like it since my left leg and arm felt incredibly weird for several HOURS). They told me no and I told them I was too afraid to take more pills. So I haven't taken anymore of the escitalopram tablets.

I had a major medication hangover Tuesday afternoon and evening. I was still not sleeping well until like 11 PM Tuesday. When I finally woke up on Wednesday, it was like 2 PM. I didn't want to go through another episode of Lexapro madness.

As of recent, the side effects have subsided, almost two weeks later.

I don't have that much of a support group at home. My sister is a very "au naturale" person when it comes to life and she condemned me for going to a psychiatrist and getting pills, saying I was just as bad as people she knew who use drugs to study for school. I don't think I'm that bad, but I knew she was going to have that type of reaction which is why I intentionally didn't tell her why I was going to go see the "doctor" (as in never told her it was a psychiatrist). My parents just laughed at me when they saw me freaking out. Again when I was having this freakout overnight from that Monday evening, no one wanted to stay with me to make sure I didn't die or something, so being alone while on such a bad drug trip was incredibly scary and anxiety inducing.

HOWEVER... that isn't the end of the story. Eventually the next week, I'd finally gotten over the major medication hangover and felt good enough to drive (and plus, it was Thanksgiving week and the office was closed). I finally went to go speak to the psychiatrist again as a last-minute followup that wasn't expected since I wanted to ask more about the medication he'd prescribed and ways I can manage the side effects that come with it. I did this simply because his nurses suggested I come see him to do so.

When I got into his office, he basically just tore into me about how I didn't listen or follow the directions on the medication. He told me to NOT call his office ANYMORE. He doesn't want me calling because I ask lots weird questions and I was annoying his staff and wasting their time. I only called like... three times. Now of course, I called three times over the span of one day last week and called no more. And I still had to pay the $30 copay for the visit even though I only went to go ask questions...

More stuff he told me about was to not read the medication guide that comes with them because I'm going to start believing I have all the serious side effects that come with it. I thought I was being thorough by doing what the guide said and calling my doctor immediately if those side effects occur, which I honestly thought they did.

So now I feel like a failure and I feel incredibly depressed that I couldn't even follow a doctor's orders correctly. In fact, he was so adamant about not having me call the office anymore that he prescribed me Klonopin. Over the phone. I don't know if I can confidently face him right now because I'll just feel like a failure when I go in for my followup appointment. Since he told me to blindly take the medication without reading anything, I feel kind of alone and afraid to begin taking the medication.

Again, I haven't taken any more medication since that night a few weeks ago. I've got plans to try again this coming week. The reason I don't start right now is because I have an important volunteer obligation I'd already said yes to that I need to be mentally competent for to both drive and be aware for. Obviously I didn't die like I thought I was going to while going through the Lexapro trip, and so the next time I take this medication, I'll try my best to remember that I probably am not going to die, but the side effects just seem incredibly scary. Anyone have any words of encouragement or can anyone relate?

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Hey Mileage....

Your story and actions taken are very similar to my own.

My ordeal started in the beginning of June this year, and as of today, things are way better. I have my life back.

I'm going to try and help you with what i can, from my own experience.

First off, it was very wrong of the doc to treat you like that. Trust me, they are not all like that. If you can find another one, I'd change him/her.

What you experienced first time you took your Ads, it is common. I went through the same thing, I woke up one morning in June after I started Cipralex and I thought my whole word crashed. I had suicide thoughts, I felt like I was out of this world. I took some ativan that day and slept all day. I was too scared to take another dose, so I stopped them.

2 days later I was throwing up in the emergency room...I told the ER nurse I don't need to see a regular doctor, but the psychiatrist on duty.

The pshychiatrist saw how the condition I was in and prescribed Celexa and Clonazepam.

Honestly, I actually thought that my life was over and that I'll end up ******* myself.

It took me 3 months to get over that, but it wasn't easy. I started with 5 mg celexa and now I've levelled at 40 mg. I also just completed a group CBT teraphy, which also helped.

Still doing CBT teraphy one on one.

Cipralex (escitolapram) it is a very good med, and depends on the person how long it takes to work.

There are couple post here, where my friends and I posted all summer about our anxiety and meds. You will get better, I've been there. I'm a mom, I have a 14 year old son, and for almost a whole month I couldn't leave the house, I couldn't drive, clean, cook. My husband did all that. I took time off work.

Be gentle to your body and mind...They are working with you, not against you. Just give it some time.

I'm here to help if you want....

Hope to hear back from you.

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Hey guys. It's Thursday morning at like 4:20 AM. I just thought I would share what's happened thus far.

Last night, I took Lexapro 10 mg again for the first time after the first time a few weeks ago. I was extremely frightened of what was going to happen after last time. After dinner last night, I actually took a knife and cut a pill into fourths instead of two halves like I'm supposed to. I thought about only taking a fourth so that the bad drug trip wouldn't last as long.

I was still terrified of intentionally putting myself through neurological torture and stood at the counter with a quarter-pill, anticipating whether or not I would take it. Almost 45 minutes passed before I manned up the courage to just take it. And what a ride I was in for...

I took it and went to go hug my parents and ask them if they'd watch over me to make sure I didn't keel over. I kept telling myself that I didn't die last time so I probably wasn't going to die this time. But immediately I started feeling the effects of the Lexapro. And it was bad. I couldn't believe what was happening. I kept thinking, "You id iot, this is exactly what happened last time!" I had an increased heart rate, twitchy arms and legs, tingling in my throat area and my limbs, and light sensitivity. I kept taking deep breaths and hoping I could beat it. But I couldn't.

I tried to go lay down and hoped I could immediately fall asleep, with the door open of course so that I could call my parents if I needed anything. Nope. The room started spinning and I felt like I was floating and not in a good way. The tingling got worse. I was afraid to move. I had to keep calling my parents over and asking to hold their hands because that made me feel emotionally better at least.

What was so scary for me is just watching yourself helplessly lose control of your body and there's nothing you can do about it. For about an hour, I suffered through the side effects from the Lexapro. I was NOT okay with taking the Klonopin/Clonazepam just because I felt like I wanted to live above the influence and not take addicting drugs like that. But my parents told me I probably need to take it so that it'd help calm me down. I was reluctant at first just because I was afraid of losing even more control over my body and mind, thinking, "I want to make sure I don't start saying or doing anything that will haunt me for years to come..."

But then I said screw it. So I asked my parents to go cut one of the Clonazepam tablets in half and I took that. I immediately felt the effects of it. First, my brain felt so foggy and cold that I could barely think and I was worrying, "Oh no, what have I done?!" I started tasting the toothpaste on my lips from when I brushed my teeth after dinner which started scaring me that I was sensing things that weren't something I normally notice. Then I just got very dizzy while in bed. I had to keep calling my parents over just to help calm me down.

I eventually calmed down a whole lot. My heart rate returned to normal, but it was still a thick beat. But I felt very groggy and was concerned I wasn't coherent enough to realize what I might do or say. I kept trying to do math problems in my head to make sure I was still sane, and felt like I was struggling but I got them all right.

I had to ask my parents to walk me to the bathroom about four times, but eventually I started feeling so much better that it was almost like I didn't take the Lexapro/escitalopram to begin with. I was so relieved to be in control of my body again.

Within an hour, I was up and walking on my own. Magical.

I slept a little but had some trouble. Specifically, when I first lay down, I would have the jolting-awake spasms immediately if I fell asleep like I mentioned in the OP. But I wasn't freaking out about them as much and just kept trying to fall asleep more than anything.

I eventually woke up to write this. I feel so much better than I think I would've without the Clonazepam. I have a killer headache, but so relieved I don't feel horrible like I would've without it. But now I have a dilemma: I will be taking half of the Clonazepam and quarters of the Lexapro/escitalopram. I feel like that might be a bad mismatch for addiction reasons. I can't call my psychiatrist since he doesn't want me calling his office anymore. I have an appointment with him this Monday though. I could ask him then, but I'm afraid he's going to tear into me again for not following his directions. His directions were to half both of them for four days in a row, then begin taking full tablets. I don't know how to correct a mismatch like this. Maybe my local pharmacist would know.

Thanks to anyone who reads this. It makes me feel not so alone.

Edited by Mileage

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I'm shocked at how poorly your psychiatrist has treated you. I'd dump him and look for someone else who has compassion and shows interest in helping you.

I am not a doctor, but the reaction you've had to a quarter of a 10mg escitalopram pill seems extreme, and something your health care provider should be aware of. He should be listening to your concerns and helping you, not telling you to stop calling.

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Alright you guys. Tonight is my fourth continuous night of taking both Lexapro and Klonopin together. The fear that gets struck in my heart/stomach when I think of the past, go out in public, and whatnot is basically masked and I hardly notice it. When fear does break through, it's not a sharp fear. Moments of depression are also masked, so I guess that's good.

I'm on half a pill of both the Lexapro and Klonopin now. Let me just go ahead and say that when I woke up this morning, I had quite a bit of difficulty coherently reading anything like text messages, webpages, actual printed text. It feels like medication-induced dyslexia. I'm able to still read, but I have to reread passages multiple times before I can finally see what the text even says. My brain seems to be adding in words where they don't belong, mixing up words, or even changing the order that things are written in. Especially when things are multi-line, my brain will start reading from the next line. This has continued all day. I hope it's a temporary side effect that doesn't last long.

But again, it seems like the Klonopin has saved the day from all the bad side effects from the Lexapro, so that's good at least. Taken together at the same time and all the bad side effects from the Lexapro just go away and I can function like normal without feeling like I'm losing total control over my body.

Edited by Mileage

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I had my follow-up appointment today!

Let's just say I want out of this mess right now...

Here's how today went: My appointment was pretty early in the morning. I had skipped the Klonopin last night just to see if the Lexapro was now working without it. It no longer gives me the bad side effects, at least initially. However, I didn't sleep more than one hour overnight. I was dead-tired (and still am because I haven't slept yet!). I tried driving myself to the psychiatrist's appointment, and I honestly didn't feel like I should be driving--the road I know to be perfectly straight that leads to his office actually started warping in my vision, so that was bad. Thankfully his office is a couple of blocks from my house.

When I first got into his office, my psychiatrist actually congratulated me and said he was proud of me for not calling the office once for the last two weeks. So that's good. Then he asked me how I was doing. I told him about the stuff I'd written here beyond the OP. He just attributed everything including my sudden inability to coherently read to anxiety. I hope he's right...

He wanted to increase my dosage of Lexapro. Yeah, no thanks right now. He then wrote me another prescription for both Lexapro and Klonopin. I'm not even 1/3 done with my current prescription filling. So that was the end of that. He wants to see me in a month. I scheduled an appointment, but I don't want to go back. His scheduling nurse said we had to schedule an appointment because he doesn't like patients holding onto prescriptions for too long.

I don't even want to hold onto these prescriptions. I don't feel like they're my cup of tea, so-to-speak. I hope my ability to read comes back once I stop... I think it will, but I keep watching horror stories on YouTube and reading everything I can about Lexapro and its benefits and dangers from actual consumers.

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Mileage,

what were you diagnosed with? Depression or anxiety or both?

I have to say, i'd get rid of you psychiatrist...to congratulate you that you didn't call him in 2 weeks??? wow!

I remember back in 2010 when I started my anxiety, i made an appt with a psychiatrist, however it took 2 months to get in. Meanwhile, i remember calling his office and talking to the secretary (who was his wife) and she'd calm me down. She used to talk to me a lot, even thou I wasn't even a patient yet. So, if you can find another one, please do so.

Lexapro is a good drug, i was on it. If you can ride out the side effects, you will benefit from it. Side effects are the worst, lots of people stop the meds because of them.

By googling all the time, you'll get mixed results. Some people don't came back to talk about their success story, so you only hear the worst.

Everyone is different. I had terrible side effects at the beginning of the spring, because of select. I stopped working for 1 month, and I thought I'd never get better.

However, hear I am , 6 months later, doing much much better. My anxiety is under control and I also took CBT.

I remember reading through these topics back in June, and one thread really stuck with me. Here it is, if you want to start from page 1.

Please Tell Me It Gets Better by JAMommy

All the best!

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Skip the psychiatrist and go to your general practitioner. They know about AD drugs too and are generally very, very interested in helping to manage side effects and would never tell you not to call them with concerns. You mentioned you had trouble sleeping. That's common and you doctor can prescribe additional meds to help with sleep. I use Trazodone and it helps a lot.

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Mileage,

what were you diagnosed with? Depression or anxiety or both?

I have to say, i'd get rid of you psychiatrist...to congratulate you that you didn't call him in 2 weeks??? wow!

I remember back in 2010 when I started my anxiety, i made an appt with a psychiatrist, however it took 2 months to get in. Meanwhile, i remember calling his office and talking to the secretary (who was his wife) and she'd calm me down. She used to talk to me a lot, even thou I wasn't even a patient yet. So, if you can find another one, please do so.

Lexapro is a good drug, i was on it. If you can ride out the side effects, you will benefit from it. Side effects are the worst, lots of people stop the meds because of them.

By googling all the time, you'll get mixed results. Some people don't came back to talk about their success story, so you only hear the worst.

Everyone is different. I had terrible side effects at the beginning of the spring, because of select. I stopped working for 1 month, and I thought I'd never get better.

However, hear I am , 6 months later, doing much much better. My anxiety is under control and I also took CBT.

I remember reading through these topics back in June, and one thread really stuck with me. Here it is, if you want to start from page 1.

Please Tell Me It Gets Better by JAMommy

All the best!

I went in for several different diagnoses but only left with two: generalized anxiety disorder and major depressive disorder.

I went in because I've had anxiety all my life. Recently it got so bad that I've barely left my house and cut off all of my friends and quit school. It's been four months since this happened and it's still ongoing.

I tried going to go see my family doctor and she actually suggested several different diagnoses, but actually tried referring me to a different psychiatrist in the area. I had to actually go to a screening agency BEFORE I could make an appointment with that psychiatrist and they actually denied me the ability to see that psychiatrist because the social worker who saw me said my anxiety was worse than anything and she said she didn't believe I had clinical depression. The social worker explained to me that this other psychiatrist didn't want to see me unless I had clinical depression, schizophrenia, or bipolar disorder. So that was a dead end.

I got kinda desperate and looked through my insurance network for the first psychiatrist who would see me. There weren't a lot of options... There were only two. Incidentally the first one who could see me was the psychiatrist who I've been seeing these last three weeks. He could see me within a week.

Several weeks later, here we are! I read your reply yesterday and told myself to be brave and took another 5 mg portion of some Lexapro. I'm just barely waking up fifteen hours later. This is tough.

Edited by Mileage

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Mileage, your psychiatrist sounds like a terrible human being. I would not tolerate him for another second. Make an appointment to see the other psychiatrist that your insurance will cover. He or she HAS to be better than your current pdoc. Sorry you are feeling so alone. Please come here and chat when you need a friend :)

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As a minor update, I just want to say I'm heavily irresponsible with this medication. I've skipped twice this past week, but not consecutively. I'm on whole 10 mg tablets now.

I skipped once earlier this week because I kept looking up the dangers of Lexapro and whatnot on the internet, and it just frightened me to the point where the hours kept going by and I ended up not taking it. The second time, I came down with a cold and I was suffering through the cold symptoms. I wasn't sure if I wanted to suffer through both a cold and Lexapro side effects.

But I took another 10 mg tablet tonight. Something interesting happened that hasn't happened since starting Lexapro up about a week ago. I got that "happy, not a care in the world" feeling a few hours after taking the tablet. I also noticed that my pupils were greatly dilated. This happened initially when I first started Lexapro like in the OP. I'm not sure if that's what Lexapro eventually will bring me to once it starts working, but it's both fun and scary at the same time. Fun because I wanted to do so much all at once like go on a date to go see the community Christmas lights, read a book (that's a shocker), and go to the gym. But scary because I've never seen that side of life in so long that I honestly don't know if that's me.

I've been through a mental battle this whole past week of wanting to just quit Lexapro and switch to something like St. John's Wort and convince myself it works. Coming down with the cold in the midst of skipping doses felt like the opportune time to do so because I'm taking lots of OTC pills that you're not supposed to mix with Lexapro like ibuprofen. But I took more Lexapro tonight because if I don't, I keep asking myself, "What else are you going to? You're about to start at your dream college here in a few weeks and you're still going to have the crippling anxiety that caused you to not go this past fall."

I know that herbal doesn't necessarily mean better for you, but I again just worry about the long-term effects of what antidepressants will do to you, particularly when you get up to 65+ in age. Especially with how Lexapro is actually relatively new in comparison to other antidepressants, not much might be known about its effects yet. I also keep telling myself that I wasted all this time trying to get treatment that I might as well utilize what I've been given.

I'm rambling at this point. I just thought I'd share more about the good and the bad from this past week.

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Hey Mileage,

Just a word of advice, you should not be playing taking/skipping Cipralex. If you decide to remain on it, you should really stick to a routine. if you don't remember to take it, set yourself an alarm for the time you usually take it. Even if you have a cold, you have to take it.

Always take the same dose, do not increase or decrease it without talking to your doctor.

Antidepressants are safe, not like the antianxiety meds (ex. Ativan, Valium, Klonopin) which are highly addictive. You don't get addicted to antidepressants, and if you dont go over the max dose, it is safe.

For example, for celexa max dose used to be 60 mg daily. But, studies showed that the dose it too high for the heart, so now max dose for Celexa is 40 mg daily.

Also, if you are worried, you can also go to your gp and get a full blood test. Then, 6 months or so down the road, get another blood test and compare the results.

Cipralex is a very good med and very "clean". You just need to give it time to work. Stick to your daily dose, and DO NOT skip any doses.

How long has it been on Cipralex now?

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Hey Mileage,

Just a word of advice, you should not be playing taking/skipping Cipralex. If you decide to remain on it, you should really stick to a routine. if you don't remember to take it, set yourself an alarm for the time you usually take it. Even if you have a cold, you have to take it.

Always take the same dose, do not increase or decrease it without talking to your doctor.

Antidepressants are safe, not like the antianxiety meds (ex. Ativan, Valium, Klonopin) which are highly addictive. You don't get addicted to antidepressants, and if you dont go over the max dose, it is safe.

For example, for celexa max dose used to be 60 mg daily. But, studies showed that the dose it too high for the heart, so now max dose for Celexa is 40 mg daily.

Also, if you are worried, you can also go to your gp and get a full blood test. Then, 6 months or so down the road, get another blood test and compare the results.

Cipralex is a very good med and very "clean". You just need to give it time to work. Stick to your daily dose, and DO NOT skip any doses.

How long has it been on Cipralex now?

Well, I started taking Lexapro on December 10 and have skipped multiple doses for fear of long-term effects like brain damage or heart damage. I haven't taken Lexapro since Saturday, the 20th, and skipped a dose for the same reason on the 18th. I also completely quit the Klonopin about three days in.

I feel like I need some kind of treatment immediately and there's never been a better time in my life to try and get help since I have literally no responsibilities like housework, kids, bills, school, job, etc. I don't have any of these responsibilities simply because I have so much anxiety that it prevents me from being able to do them. Like right now as I'm typing this, it's currently supposed to be time for my next dose of Lexapro but I will not have taken it for the past three days.

I've been having depressed episodes these last three days of how I'm such an absolute failure that I can't take this medication but I just can't, I haven't left my tiny little room except to maybe use the bathroom these last three days and that's how it's been before starting Lexapro. My room is the only place I feel safe, but it just feels like a prison most of the day. It's Christmastime and there's family members who come to visit throughout the house and I just have too much social anxiety to leave my room and face them.

I've tried going to counseling with a psychologist months before starting Lexapro, but it simply didn't work out. It was one of the free counselors offered through my university (even though I dropped out secretly without telling him). I tried it as a "throw all your cards down on the table at once" deal and we simply didn't cover a whole lot because we went in circles each session with me telling the psychologist what I thought (I have a severe distrust of people and think they're conspiring against me, so I told him that no matter what, I was going to be skeptical of him thinking bad thoughts about me as a person) and his responses to try and get me to break free of that. This went on for 6-7 weekly sessions over the course of a month and a half before I stopped going. I could try another counselor, but I don't think I have the money for that. Antidepressants are much cheaper, at about $12.74 for both my Klonopin and Lexapro prescriptions. Definitely they work, but I just can't take them without feeling like I've made a terrible mistake of ruining my body with pills.

My mother, whom I don't live with nor grew up with, takes antidepressants. More specifically Zoloft. Over the last several years, she's experienced significant weight gain. I'm a height-weight proportionate guy. I don't want something like that to happen to me where I can't take the weight off once I want to get off Lexapro. All scientific sources I can find about Lexapro say it's not associated with weight-gain, but polls here and stories I read/watch elsewhere tend to claim that it's more common than not you'll experience weight-gain on Lexapro.

In short, I've pretty much screwed up. I can't take the help I've been given because of major anxiety of what could happen, and it's probably going to continue in a viscious cycle for the foreseeable future.

:(

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Hey guys. It's a new year.

I feel trapped and don't know what to do. I quit taking Lexapro all those weeks ago and my depression has taken a turn for the worst, leading me to think I truly might need medication to help me through my life right now.

But again, I've never taken pills in my life and just watching myself lose control over my body while on medication is just one of the most scariest things ever. I've hidden the pills from myself.

I have my next psychiatrist appointment coming up in about a week and I don't know what I'm going to do. I haven't been taking my medication like I'm supposed to, so I'm thinking about just canceling that appointment saying I moved or something because I feel like it'll be a very expensive visit for the psychiatrist to lecture me about how he'll drop me as a patient or something for not listening to him.

Treatment for this is kinda expensive for me. I'm 20 but unemployed, eating out of my savings. I have insurance, but the copays I've accrued thus far are kinda high.

I don't have anyone to talk to about this in real life. I guess I've only come here at this point because this is one place where I feel like I can express myself and not be judged...

What to do...?

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Hi Milege :) Sorry to hear you aren't feeling well. It sounds like you probably could benefit from the antidepressant right now. Don't worry about what the long term side effects might be. Just focus on today, which is all you have, and how you can get yourself feeling better right now. You may only need to take it for 6 months to a year to get back to feeling ok again. Or, you may need it longer. You don't know that. No one knows. But what you do know is that today, this day, you are not doing well, and there is a medication that very well may be able to help you get your quality of life back again.

As for the cost...I don't know about you, but my insurance does not cover the cost of a psychiatrist....that got to be very prohibitively expensive for me to pay out of pocket for that, at $100 a visit, so now I just go to my family doctor and pay a $10 copay. I would prefer to see my psychiatrist but I have found that the family doctor has been knowledgeable and helpful and you can't beat the cost. Hope that helps.

Oh, and don't be afraid of what your doc thinks of you. Just tell him the truth. Trust me, he has seen it all and will not be surprised that you haven't been compliant. People are noncompliant with their meds all the time...it's not good, but it happens allllllll the time.....I know this because I am a home health nurse and I am always after people to take their meds as prescribed :)

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Hey Mileage...

TiffanyC gave you some very good advice.

The startup side effects could be bad, I agree...but they go away. Just take them DAILY around the same time. It will get easier, you just need to tell yourself that you're mental health is worth it.

I don't see a psychiatrist, I go to my family doctor and he prescribes me the meds.

Don't be ashame to take the meds. Think of people that suffer from diabetes or blood pressure. They are on the meds for life.

You may not need to take them forever, but if you cannot get out of this without meds, than it will be worth it to take them.

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Hey Mileage, I haven't been here long so I just read all of your story, I wish I had joined earlier and seen this, I can relate so much to how you feel, suffering through the side effects and all the fears that act like a snowball rolling down a hill.

In the past, I would have posted that while your psychiatrist is a total (censored for your protection), for your own sake do what you can to find another doctor, this guy sounds unhealthy.

I also see things the same way others have mentioned, Ina and Tiffany's advice is dead on.

When I first started having problems with anxiety, I also felt kind of ashamed that I was taking these man-made drugs. I read the warning labels extensively and bothered my local pharmacist after my own "doctor"reacted to my own calls in the way yours did. In the beginning when I knew next to nothing, I did not know what to expect. I felt all kinds of things (not just imagined, some of them from different drugs I tried), although I tended to hype myself up and worry too much over something that was not actually true, I had just scared/talked myself into it. I hated that I took them, but when I found the right ones they really made a huge difference, like you said- magic.

One of the reasons people will recommend you either stay on a medication or keep off of it is because the initial side effects will be felt more strongly with this ebb and flow of varying dosages. Your body is going to try and compensate for the change and unfortunately you may end up feeling uncomfortable over something that may just be a small muscle spasm because you were subconsciously flexing a muscle in your leg from feeling anxious, or felt dizzy and as if you couldn't catch your breath, but really it was just hyperventilating. I do not say this as a snide remark towards you, but I used to sabotage myself a LOT worrying about worrying.

If you are depressed and anxious, you're likely a more sensitive person, so don't forget to give yourself credit. It's healthy for people in your situation to make a big deal of the good things and put down the bad ones. Ah right something along those lines and worries- if you are taking a medication like Lexapro or Clonazepam, it would be completely normal for you to have dilated pupils at times. I freaked myself out so many times staring at my eyes, hoping they would just go back to normal and stop making things look so sharp. Our eyes dilate and contract based on light or neuroactivity, it doesn't necessarily mean anything bad is going on with you. Also, if you are prone to anxiety attacks, it's like your subconscious is tricking your body into thinking you are in a fight or flight response. Our minds and imagination are fascinating things, though they can make something that isn't a big deal feel like a life-threatening situation.

If you are feeling anxious please feel free to send me a private message, I know how much it can mean to have someone who understands, or at least someone who is listening, not babbling or judging

Best wishes!

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What a great reply from I have no name!

Mileage, we have been there. I know the ins and outs of the side effects. I had them all. And more. There were times when I didn't think I'd make it through. But I had friends here that encouraged me to stick with it.

First time on meds, I gained weight. So after 3 years I gave them up. Big mistake.

Honestly, I'd rather be 20 pounds overweight for now than to experience anxiety at its worst.

Cannot stress enough how right TiffanyC and IHaveNoName are.

We are here if you need help!!

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What a great reply from I have no name!

Mileage, we have been there. I know the ins and outs of the side effects. I had them all. And more. There were times when I didn't think I'd make it through. But I had friends here that encouraged me to stick with it.

First time on meds, I gained weight. So after 3 years I gave them up. Big mistake.

Honestly, I'd rather be 20 pounds overweight for now than to experience anxiety at its worst.

Cannot stress enough how right TiffanyC and IHaveNoName are.

We are here if you need help!!

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Btw, back in June 2014 when this whole anxiety thing kicked back in, I never thought I'd be able to travel again. I had plans to visit Spain last summer, but due to anxiety I cancelled everything. I took CBT group therapy this past fall, and combined with celexa....guess where I am now? On a trip to the Dominican Republic. That meant getting on a plane and traveling again. Yes, here I am, 7 months after my ordeal started again.

You can do it too my friend!!!!

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Hey guys. I greatly appreciate the replies. I have read through them but haven't gotten around to being able to sit down and write an appropriate response yet.

I start college in a week and I am having major anxiety about my situation. I chose on campus housing and I got placed in the newest dorms. I looked up my roommates and they don't seem like the most harmonious group of people, so I'm worried about that.

The newest dorms are also incredibly expensive. More expensive than I thought. I tried changing rooms to a cheaper option but they said I probably couldn't change rooms until next week, which is after the move in date.

My anxiety is just flaring up so bad. I keep having that butterflies-in-the-stomach feeling pretty bad and a feeling of impending doom. I've never lived in a dorm before and I've never lived away from home more than a week. It's just incredibly frightening. So much so that I'm just freaking out and contemplating filling out the withdrawal form again. (As in this has happened before where I dropped out of this university because of major anxiety.)

I still haven't begun the Lexapro again. I feel like I should but I seriously have so much trouble with getting the courage to swallow the tablet.

I registered with the student office of disabilities in case my fears of impending doom DO happen. My family is pleading for me to not go away to college and stay home for college, but my major depression is tied (but not the main cause) with dropping out the first time.

Again, it's just me rambling. I'll formulate a response for you all later.

Edited by Mileage

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