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Old 06-10-2016, 05:36 PM   #1
infinitely
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Starting medication

For about half a year I've been discussing with my therapist whether or not I should start taking antidepressants. I've finally concluded that it's the right step for me and that it's something I need to try along with my therapy, so we decided that I should start. I saw my doctor today and talked through it and got a prescription.

So now I have the medication in my hands and I'm supposed to start tomorrow, but suddenly I'm really scared. I don't know why, but the idea of it all feels so serious and I'm getting cold feet. I've been struggling with depression for the past ten years and panic disorder for maybe seven, so it's probably about time that I try this, but I'm just scared.

While I'm well informed when it comes to possible side effects I can't know which I'll get, if any. I'm worried that it will do more harm than good, but I also can't know what before I try. I know this is something I should/want to try. I guess I just need some support and maybe advice? Does anybody have any tips for how I can get the courage to take that first dose in the morning?




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Old 06-10-2016, 07:10 PM   #2
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I think it is quite common to have that moment of doubt once you get the prescription in your hand. It sounds like it is something you have discussed at length with your therapist would it be helpful to remind yourself of the reasons you have decided to give medication a go.

It is good to be well informed of the side effects, they are most common during the first couple of weeks - particularly things like nausea. It just takes a bit of time for your body to get used to having the medication. Do you have any friends or family that know you are trying a medication? It can be helpful to have people in your corner whilst you adjust. We are here too.

For the first dose I would try to take as soon as you get up. It can be helpful to keep your meds next to your glass or cup for your first drink of the day and then it is there ready.

Good luck! I hope the medication helps you.



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Old 06-10-2016, 08:11 PM   #3
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Thanks for the response!

I talked to one of my roommates yesterday and told him that I was going to the doctor today. The pamphlet that came with said it could be a good idea to tell someone you're starting meds so they can help you look out for any negative changes, so maybe I'll talk to him.

I talked to my mother a few months ago about how it was something I was considering, but she seemed to feel like it was something she had done wrong that made me need that kind of help, so I'm not sure if I should tell her now. She doesn't have anything to do with my depression, and I don't want her to think that either. I'll probably wait a bit before I tell her and my dad.

I'm thinking I'm going to get it ready tonight, because for the first week I'm only taking half a tablet instead of the entire thing, so maybe that will make it easier in the morning.

Thanks again for the response. It's does help.




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Old 07-10-2016, 09:12 AM   #4
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Oh my mother does the same, my parents don't know about my mental health for the same reason. Talking to your roommate sounds like it might be a good option though.

How did you get on this morning?



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Old 07-10-2016, 10:27 AM   #5
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I ended up not being able to talk to my roommate, but I'll see if I can tonight.

I've had the day off today, so I've been procrastinating getting up, but I'm going to get up now, try and make a nice breakfast and get it all ready so I can take the meds. I'm sure it won't be as hard as I imagine, but still - wish me luck!


Update: It went okay, in a way it was kind of anti-climatic, while at the same time I feel like now I'm "officially" mentally ill? Which is kind of scary. But I think I'm going to be fine. I just have to wait and see what happens.


Last edited by infinitely : 07-10-2016 at 12:47 PM. Reason: Update



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Old 07-10-2016, 05:50 PM   #6
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I'm glad it went ok, how are you doing now?

In what way does feeling "officially mentally ill" feel scary? I wonder whether there are alternate ways of framing taking medication.



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Old 07-10-2016, 10:20 PM   #7
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I feel alright. Obviously nothing has happened as of yet, so in a way that's good. I'm not sure why exactly, but thinking that it's going to work is equally as scary as the thought that it might now work. In a way I guess I've gotten "comfortable" living this way, or I don't know who I am without it, in a way.

It just feels so real. Now that I'm on medication I feel like I can't explain it away as a bad day or a though period. It's probably not a good way of viewing it. I'm trying to just look at it the same way I see my allergy pills or my asthma medication - just something I need to take to help my body function the way it's supposed to. I don't know why antidepressants should feel any different than that. Maybe it just takes time to get used to the idea.




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Old 08-10-2016, 03:40 AM   #8
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Starting medication was the best decision I've made. Don't be discouraged if the first one or two or three dont work. Communicate with your doctor. If you're seeing your primary care physician instead of a psychiatrist, you might want to ask for a referral. Medicine takes time to get the right mixture, but once you get it, you'll feel like yourself for the first time in ten years and all of it will worth it. It took about 8 months to regulate my medicine and doses, two of those months were unnecessary because I saw my primary care and he didn't know what was doing. The day I woke up and realized I was OK, I knew the medicine had worked. And when I thought, "I actually want to live today" I knew my life was changed for the better. If you have side effects or notice it's not working by the alloted time period, bug the heck out of your doctor. Call every day, leave messages, get an earlier appointment, anything you have to do to get that medicine and dose stabilized as soon as possible. And please do let one or two people know you've started this. It's a good journey, and something to celebrate!

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Old 08-10-2016, 11:21 AM   #9
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I am seeing my primary care and not a psychiatrist, but my psychologist is the one who made the recommendation for what kind of medication, dose etc. When I saw my doctor she said she wanted to be in touch with my psychologist so she could get a better picture of how things are going and stuff. Based on my talk with her, I'm confident that she knows what she's doing - she seems to have experience, but I'll keep my eyes open and get a referral if I feel like I need it.

I hope this is going to be a good experience, but I also feel like it's important that I realise that just because I started doesn't mean that I can't stop if I feel like it's not for me. But of course I hope this is going to work for me. I'm ready for it to work.




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Old 08-10-2016, 02:45 PM   #10
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Well done for taking that big step and starting the medication, I really hope it's helpful for you! Were you able to speak to your roommate about it?

I really like your way of thinking about it as being something to help your body function the way it's supposed to.

Just wanted to echo what others have said that even if this one doesn't work out, there's plenty of other medications to try, though obviously hopefully it won't come to that.

You're right to remind yourself that you can stop if at any point you feel like it's not the right choice for you; hopefully knowing that will help you with taking it day to day. The only other thing I'd say is that often side effects do pass after a while, so if you find yourself experiencing an adverse effect that you feel you couldn't tolerate long term, if it is feasible to cope with it in the short term, maybe consider giving it a bit of time to see if it passes.

All the best with it!


Last edited by Pi.R^2 : 08-10-2016 at 03:03 PM.


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Old 09-10-2016, 07:20 AM   #11
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I still haven't been able to talk to him. We've been on kind of opposite schedules the past few days, so I haven't been able to catch him alone. I'm hoping I can talk to him tonight.

As for wether or not this is going to work, my psychologist and my doctor both said that we can't really know for sure if it's working until about three months, so I should be on them for at least that unless the side effects are really bad.

So far all is good, but it's still early in on, so I'm trying not to focus too much on it. It's too early for me to notice anything anyways.

Again, thank you for all the support. It's very helpful, especially since I haven't been able to tell anyone in real life yet.




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Old 17-10-2016, 09:38 AM   #12
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When I started medication I was 14 and at that age I did feel apprehensive.

Some people find reading up about the medication helpful (I did), but some people don't.



PM me if you want a PDF copy of the ICD-10 or the Mental Health Act 1983/2007. I ALSO HAVE THE DSM-V BOOK and am a pharmacology student.

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Old 19-10-2016, 09:49 AM   #13
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I have read a lot about it, and did find that helpful. I keep the leaflet that came with so I can go back and read it if I feel uncertain about things I'm experiencing. It's only been like two weeks, so it obviously hasn't really started working. I do think there's been some minor side effects though, because I've been noticing increased nausea (although it's thankfully very little) and I sweat a lot more, especially at night. Which is kind of annoying, but not something I can't deal with.

I'll see how things continue developing. I'm seeing my psychologist tomorrow, so I think that will be helpful. And like I talked about further up, I was finally able to talk to my roommate - he's very supportive. I also talked to my mum last night, so I actually told her about it. I'm still confident that I've made the right decision, so I hope I keep feeling like this.




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Old 22-10-2016, 03:43 PM   #14
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How are you finding the medication and how did it go with your psychologist the other day?

Great to hear that you were able to talk to your mum and roommate and that your roommate was supportive! How was your mum's response?



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Old 24-10-2016, 07:00 PM   #15
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So far, I haven't really noticed much change other than what I've listed below. If anything, maybe I don't feel as tired and irritable as I used to? But not like a huge difference. Both my parents came to visit and we brieftly spoke about it then, but they seemed neutral to it. Like, they're supportive, but they didn't say much about it.

I ended up not being able to see my psychologist. Turned out he was ill and in hospital, but he's well now and we rescheduled for Friday.

All in all I'm feeling okay though. I feel like I'm on a good path. I don't think the meds have given me much physical change as of yet, but just being in that routine and pushing through with everything I'm supposed to doing while still trying to find time to recharge, I'm okay.




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Old 29-10-2016, 08:24 PM   #16
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Sorry, reading my response back it was kinda dumb to ask how it was going as you had just answered that I must have missed that bit when I read it first time!!

Do you feel a little disappointed that your parents didn't say more or are you happy with their response?

Hope your psychologist appointment went well yesterday.

That's great that you're feeling OK; even if there isn't a physical effect yet, you could be experiencing a bit of a placebo effect too- just knowing that you're taking something that's hopefully going to help can make you feel a little better!



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